Michigan: Secretary of State wants $40M from feds to hold election during COVID-19 | Beth LeBlanc/The Detroit News
Michigan Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson told federal lawmakers Wednesday that the $11.2 million in CARES Act Funding appropriated to Michigan for election challenges posed by the coronavirus is not enough. Benson told the Subcommittee on the Constitution, Civil Rights and Civil Liberties of the U.S. House Committee on the Judiciary that she still needs roughly $40 million more to adjust election procedures in light of the COVID-19 pandemic. “Democracy can and will survive this pandemic, but we need your ongoing help,” the Detroit Democrat said. The testimony comes nearly two weeks after President Donald Trump threatened Michigan funding over Benson’s decision to mail absentee ballot applications to qualified Michigan voters ahead of the August and November elections. The state already allows voters to cast ballots by mail for any reason. Benson announced Tuesday that she will mail all of Michigan’s 7.7 million voters an absentee voter application, an effort first employed in the May 5 election to curb in-person voting amid the coronavirus pandemic.