Republican Attorney General Bill Schuette’s office will argue against a proposal for an independent redistricting commission Wednesday and ask the Michigan Supreme Court to keep the measure off the November ballot. The state’s highest court on Monday granted Schuette’s request for Solicitor General Aaron Lindstrom to participate in the high-stakes arguments over the Voters Not Politicians proposal. Lindstrom will get to use five minutes of the 30-minute bloc that had been reserved for attorneys from Citizens Protecting Michigan’s Constitution, the opposition group that first asked the Supreme Court to kill the initiative that would redefine the way political boundaries are drawn in the state.
Schuette, who is also a candidate for governor, filed a brief last month arguing the redistricting initiative proposes a revision, “not a mere amendment,” to the Michigan Constitution. Revisions require approval through a constitutional convention, not the statewide ballot.
A three-judge Michigan Court of Appeals panel rejected similar arguments in early June, calling them “without merit.” The proposal is “narrowly tailored” to create a 13-member redistricting commission, the panel said in a unanimous ruling appealed to the Supreme Court.