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SOS announces post-election audits, Wayne County Canvassers trying to rescind certification

November 19, 2020
Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson in a press conference on Nov. 2, 2020. Courtesy photo by Michigan Secretary of State's office.
Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson in a press conference on Nov. 2, 2020. Courtesy photo by Michigan Secretary of State's office. —

Michigan Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson announced a statewide audit of recent election votes after all state counties voted to certify the Nov. 3 election results Wednesday; however, Wayne County canvassers have rescinded their votes, according to statements from each.

The risk-limiting audit ensures elections are accurate and is accompanied by local election performance audits. The audit was announced Thursday morning and meant to start after the Board of State Canvassers certified the election.

"This a typical, standard procedure following election certification, and one that will be carried out in Wayne County and any other local jurisdictions where the data shows significant clerical errors following state certification of the November election," Benson's statement said.

The audit is not performed in response to allegations of election irregularities, the statement said. The department conducts these audits after the Board of State Canvassers has certified the election, under the state law.

"This is because it is only after statewide certification that election officials have legal access to the documentation needed to conduct such audits," Benson said in the statement.

After Benson's Tweet, Wayne County Canvassers Monica Palmer and William Hartmann signed affidavits to rescind their votes to certify election results, according to a release from Michigan Republicans.

The announcement came a day after President Donald Trump posted about Detroit's votes; however, the post is marked as disputed.

Palmer and Hartmann said they were told they had to certify by Wayne County counsel Janet Anderson-Davis, according to the release. The canvassers were also reportedly threatened by the public.

There is no evidence that widespread voter fraud occurred in Michigan; however, election disputes continue, according to The Detroit News.

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