Conyers on ballot as federal judge strikes down Michigan petition rule

file000495587744A federal judge has struck down Michigan’s requirement that only registered voters can circulate candidate nominating petitions.

As we hear from Michigan Public Radio’s Rick Pluta, the decision allows veteran Congressman John Conyers to appear on the August primary ballot.

Earlier in the day, the Michigan Secretary of State ruled that a problem with petition circulators threatened to bring an end to Conyers’ almost 50-year congressional career. But Detroit US District Judge Matthew Leitman (LITE-man) quickly followed with a ruling that requiring petition circulators to be registered voters violates free speech rights, and is not consistent with other court decisions.

Also, Michigan does not have the same requirement for people who circulate petitions to put a question on the ballot.

Leitman issued an order that puts Conyers name into the Democratic primary, where he’ll face Detroit pastor Horace Sheffield. If Conyers is reelected, the icon of the civil rights movement will be the dean of the House.