Judge blocks ban on open carry of guns near Michigan polling places on Election Day


The ruling from Chief Judge Christopher Murray came Tuesday after Michigan  Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson’s recent directive to ban them within 100 feet of polling locations for Nov. 3.

As a result, this led to three gun rights groups suing Benson because of that directive.

Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel’s Press Secretary Ryan Jarvi said an appeal is in the works.

“We intend to immediately appeal the judge’s decision as this issue is of significant public interest and importance to our election process,” he said in a release.

During the hearing earlier today, Murray said that this was the kind of directive where public input is usually needed.

“The other thing that is concerning, in respect to the other preliminary injunction matter, is there is already a state law that prohibits voter intimidation. If anyone feels intimidated by someone carrying an open weapon, then there is already statutory authority to take care of that problem.

“The secretary just did not do this at the right time. She should have done this months ago.”

The attorney for the secretary of state’s office said that the concern was raised only recently due to the foiled Gov. Gretchen Whitmer kidnapping plot of militia members. Another factor was that two of the suspects of the group which also allegedly plotted to storm the Capitol in Lansing, attended an open carry protest.  

On Monday FOX 2 reported that Bob Stevenson, the head of the Michigan Association of Police Chiefs, said the order was probably not enforceable.

“All we are saying is if someone is inside a polling station and they are open carry, and they are not violating any state or federal law, not brandishing a weapon, intimidating voters, they are not threatening people, in and of itself – we can’t go and lock them up,” Stevenson said. “(If) they are standing in the parking lot, they are yelling at people, there are two or three people with guns standing breast to breast and people and they have to walk around them to get inside the polling station that is clearly voter intimidation.”



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