Washington, D.C. – Today Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer signed two election protection bills into law – HB 4129 and SB 505 – that will make it illegal to intimidate an election official or otherwise prevent election officials from performing their duties. The bills were introduced by Rep. Kara Hope (D-Holt), with strong support from Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson.
The bills add a new section to the Michigan Election Law to deter acts that prevent an official from performing their election-related duties, including intimidation and harassment.
“The job of election officials has increasingly become politicized. It’s critical that we step up to protect their safety and their ability to do their jobs,” said Rep. Hope. “These basic safeguards are critical to addressing the threats to our democracy as we head into 2024.”
“We applaud Michigan for prioritizing protecting election officials, and we’re proud to support Rep. Hope and Secretary of State Benson in their efforts to address this threat to Michigan elections. We hope more states follow suit to protect these essential workers of American democracy,” said Aquene Freechild, Co-Director of Public Citizen’s Democracy Campaign.
“Our freedom to vote is sacred, and our election officials do the incredibly important work that allows us to exercise that freedom. They are the hard working heroes who keep our democracy running,” said Ilana Beller, Organizing Manager for Public Citizen’s Democracy Campaign. “By standing up for election officials, we are standing up for our right to choose who represents us.”