LANSING, Mich. (Michigan News Source) – The Board of State Canvassers deadlocked on whether the Reproductive Freedom for All proposal belongs on the Nov. 8 ballot, kicking the decision to the Michigan Supreme Court for the second time.

The Board’s two Republican members agreed with a Fred Wzsolek challenge that the lack of spaces between several words in the text of the pro-abortion ballot petition would put nonsensical words into the state Constitution.

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“I feel disappointed, because 730,000 people read, understood and signed these petitions and we know the Bureau of Elections gave them a recommendation,” said Darci McConnell, communications director for Reproductive Freedom for All. “So, we are going to file a request with the Michigan Supreme Court for a judicial intervention to ask the Board to do its job.”

Steve Liedel, representing Reproductive Freedom for All, said he plans on filing within 24 to 48 hours.

McConnell said she is optimistic about the chances before the court because of a favorable Bureau of Elections staff report that recommended placing the constitutional amendment question in front of voters.

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Christen Pollo, of Citizens to Support MI Women and Children, applauded the decision by the board.

“The Board of State Canvassers today did the right thing by refusing to insert into our constitution the gibberish proposed by advocates for this extreme amendment. The Michigan Supreme Court should support this move to protect our constitution from their vandalism as well,” Pollo said.

Wzsolek said Citizens to Support MI Women and Children would be taking advantage of the board decision.

“We are going to the airwaves immediately with a spot, informing voters about their attempt to cram 60 typos into the constitution, which nobody should appreciate,” he said.

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Eric Doster, representing Citizens to Support MI Women and Children, handed out several exhibits to the board giving a rundown of the errors discovered in the language. Doster said it wasn’t the same petition that was approved by the board on March 23 and because of errors that were in a previous Secure MI Vote petition that the board couldn’t move it forward.

Liedel said the form is exactly the same as what was submitted to the State Board of Canvassers on March 23 and there are no regulations regarding the issues of spaces between words. State Board of Canvassers Chair Tony Daunt called the errors on the form “egregious” and asked Liedel if it was the exact submission that was presented to the State Board of Canvassers on March 23.

Liedel said the formatting of the spacing, or kerning, is a problem that happens when the language is moved between different programs and that every letter and space is there. He said there were no changes done to the ballot language.

Daunt said the issue was clear-cut and they didn’t approve the ballot language as it was presented by Doster during the meeting. He said the board has rejected language that has had the same problems that have been shown on a Secure MI Vote petition.

Democrat board member Jeannette Bradshaw said the Secure MI Vote petition had more typo issues than just spaces.

Liedel said there is absolutely no precedent set that allows the board to disapprove the question from getting on the ballot.

Doster came back against Liedel’s argument and said that the statutory requirements are set in the same law that sets the eight-point type.

Doster used the eight-point type argument against the same petition and sent it before the Michigan Supreme Court the first time for a union printing logo.

The board unanimously approved the designation of the ballot question as Proposal 3 immediately after the deadlock.

Leidel and Doster then went back and forth regarding the 100-word summary of the ballot language. Bureau of Elections Director Jonathan Brater eventually wrote up a summary that both didn’t completely agree with, but did not find fault with.

Brater had explained earlier why it was recommended that the board approve the proposal number and 100-word summary.

The board unanimously approved the language and adjourned for the day.