More fallout from the investigation into the nominating petition saga involving former Michigan GOP Rep. Thad McCotter. The fraudulent petition problem, it appears, reaches back beyond this year. From a Gongwer New Service report : Former U.S. Rep. Thaddeus McCotter had less than the minimum 1,000 petition signatures from registered voters to make the 2010 ballot, a Gongwer News Service analysis of those petitions shows. East Lansing-based Practical Political Consulting, the state’s top firm when it comes to voter lists, realized it had Mr. McCotter’s ballot petition signatures in its archives for all of his elections to Congress going back to his first run in 2002. The firm provided those records to Gongwer. In 2010, Mr. McCotter’s campaign claimed it submitted the maximum 2,000 petition signatures allowed. But rampant copying of petition signature pages showed at least 35 petition pages were copies.
Michigan: 4 GOP Congressional Staffers Indicted in “Blatant and Disgraceful” Election Fraud | Politics365
Four congressional staffers of former Republican Rep. Thaddeus McCotter (R-MI), who resigned from Congress on July 6, will face criminal felony charges for voter and election fraud in Michigan. The charges were announced by Michigan’s Attorney General today. The election fraud, described as “blatant,” includes forgery and faking petition signatures including using old signatures from past election forms. The voting fraud listed in the indictment report would appear to be the type of criminal activity that various voter ID laws recently passed would not have prevented.
Michigan: ‘Criminal acts were committed’ by McCotter aides forging election petitions | Detroit Free Press
Four staffers of former U.S. Rep. Thad McCotter, R-Livonia were charged today in connection with the false nominating petitions that led to McCotter’s departure from Congress. Michigan Attorney General Bill Schuette described the four as “not simply Keystone Kops running amok … criminal acts were committed.” He said the petition forgeries and cut-and-paste jobs on the petitions “would make an elementary art teacher cringe.” Schuette said the McCotter staffers also likely did the same thing in the 2008 elections, using 2006 petition signatures. … “Let me tell you this, we find any other evidence, we’ll review it in the same painstaking … thorough fashion,” Schuette said at a late-morning news conference. Schuette blasted McCotter for being “asleep at the switch,” and providing no guidance to his staffers. “They acted above the law as if it didn’t apply to them,” Schuette said.
Michigan: Criminal charges coming Thursday in allegedly fraudulent McCotter petitions | Detroit Free Press
Attorney General Bill Schuette is scheduled to announce criminal charges Thursday arising out of the investigation of allegedly fraudulent petitions submitted in the failed attempt to qualify former U.S. Rep. Thad McCotter for the ballot. Multiple defendants will face both felony and misdemeanor charges in the case, according to a person familiar with the 11 a.m. announcement. It remained unclear whether McCotter himself was a target in the probe.
Republican Nancy Cassis of Novi said Friday on public television’s “Off the Record” that she may withdraw as a candidate to avoid the $650,000 cost of a special election to fill the last six or seven weeks of former Republican Thad McCotter’s Oakland-Wayne congressional seat. If no more than one Democrat and one Republican file for the Sept. 5 special primary election, the special election – which county, city and township clerks say presents an unnecessary financial burden – would be canceled.
In accordance with state law and the U.S. Constitution, Lt. Gov. Brian Calley on Tuesday called a special election on Wednesday, Sept. 5 in the 11th Congressional District to fill the vacancy created by last week’s sudden resignation of U.S. Rep. Thad McCotter. State election officials estimate the cost of the special election to total $650,000 for the impacted local and county governments. The lieutenant governor’s strong preference is to save local tax dollars and spare election officials a significant burden by conducting the special primary election in conjunction with the regularly scheduled Aug. 7 primary. However, the timing of McCotter’s resignation makes that impossible. Primary ballots already were printed and absentee ballots were mailed when McCotter made his announcement. In addition, ballots must be sent to Michigan voters who are overseas or serving in the military at least 45 days before an election, which means the special primary election must be held on a different date than Aug. 7.
Michigan: McCotter’s resignation timing difficult for Michigan election officials | Detroit Free Press
Local election officials are anxiously awaiting word from Gov. Rick Snyder on whether a special election will be held to fill the remaining time of U.S. Rep. Thad McCotter’s term of office in Congress. The timing of McCotter’s resignation on Friday, following a petition signature scandal that erupted on Memorial Day weekend, couldn’t be much worse. It’s too late to include a special election during the Aug. 7 primary election because absentee ballots already have been mailed to thousands of voters. And the resignation comes as thousands of voters already are confronted with the prospect of new congressional representation because of redrawn districts, dictated by population shifts that are reported every 10 years by the U.S. Census.
Michigan: Governor to review holding special election for U.S. Rep. Thad McCotter’s seat | MLive.com
Gov. Rick Snyder said late Friday he does not yet have on answer on whether to schedule a special election so someone can serve out the term of U.S. Rep. Thad McCotter, who resigned abruptly. Spokeswoman Sara Wurfel said Snyder received the Livonia Republican’s resignation letter in the afternoon. “The governor thanks the congressman for his years of service to our state and country,” she said. “We won’t have a definitive answer on next steps until we have the opportunity to more closely review Michigan’s election law and consult with the state’s election experts.” The U.S. Constitution says the governor shall hold elections to fill vacancies in the House. But with the Aug. 7 primary less than five weeks away, it may be too late to hold a coinciding special election then – when the only Republican on the ballot, Kerry Bentivolio, faces a write-in challenge from former state Sen. Nancy Cassis. Perhaps the election could be held during the November general election, though whoever wins would only serve about two months.