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Judge to rule today on Detroit absentee ballot case

Absentee ballot
Absentee ballot

A Wayne County judge is expected to rule Monday in a court case challenging thousands of absentee ballots already dropped off in Detroit. The challenge was filed by the Republican candidate for Michigan Secretary of State, Kristina Karamo.

The lawsuit targets absentee ballots turned in by Detroit voters. Karamo says those ballots should be declared invalid if voters didn’t show an ID or if the ballots were deposited in unmonitored drop boxes.

Detroit’s attorneys call the lawsuit “frivolous,” and want the judge to reject the request and to order Karamo to pay the city’s legal costs.

The city’s final response in the case says the Karamo legal team offered no evidence that any laws were broken or that any impropriety occurred.

From the city’s final brief:

Instead, Plaintiffs have offered preposterous conspiracy theories. They have misrepresented evidence to this Court. To say their case is based on speculation and innuendo gives speculation and innuendo a bad name.

The legal drama is playing out as early voting is already underway. The city says, if Karamo prevails in court, that could invalidate as many as 60,000 votes by Detroit residents who expect their ballots will be counted.

Karamo is an election denier who supports “the Big Lie” that former President Donald Trump won the 2020 election. Her campaign missed the deadline to file a final response brief.

Karamo faces incumbent Democratic Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson on the ballot. Benson is not a direct party in the case.

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Rick Pluta is the managing editor for the Michigan Public Radio Network.
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