As I mentioned in my update last night, a Michigan Court of Appeals panel ruled that the Board of State Canvassers needed to reconsider Jill Stein’s petition to force a recount and reject it. At nearly the exact same time, the U.S. 6th Circuit Court of Appeals upheld the federal order allowing the recount, rejecting the appeal by Michigan Attorney Genera Bill Schuette and the Michigan Republican Party.
However, the 6th Circuit’s order also said, “If, subsequently, the Michigan courts determine that plaintiffs’ recount is improper under Michigan state law for any reason, we expect the district court to entertain any properly filed motions to dissolve or modify its order in this case.” Since the Appeals Court has actually done this with their decision yesterday, all it takes now is for the Board of State Canvassers to meet and declare Stein’s petition for a recount invalid, setting the stage for the recount to be stopped. Since they tied with a 2-2 vote the first time they ruled on her petition, it’s simply a matter of flipping one vote. That could happen as early as today when the Board of State Canvassers meets at 9:30 a.m.
That will be followed an hour later when U.S. District Judge Mark Goldsmith will hold a hearing at 10:30 a.m. to reconsider his previous ruling in light of the Board of State Canvassers’ decision and potentially halt the recount. Only he is able to do that.
UPDATE: Both the Board of State Canvassers met this morning/afternoon. The elections board adjourned while they wait for a ruling from Judge Goldsmith. Judge Goldsmith’s adjourned his hearing just before 1 p.m. ET without releasing a ruling. He is expected to issue a written opinion later today. It took eight hours for him to release his ruling after his hearing last Sunday so we may be waiting awhile.
UPDATE 2: The Board of State Canvassers decided to call it a day and didn’t wait for the ruling from Judge Goldsmith to be released. They voted to direct the Secretary of State to stop all recounts if Judge Goldsmith rules that the recount should be allowed to be ended.
The board recessed initially until 1 p.m. to wait for a ruling from U.S. District Court Judge Mark Goldsmith, who ordered the recount to go forward by noon Monday. At 1:30, the board recessed until 4 p.m. while they continued to wait for a ruling from Goldsmith, who said he will issue a written opinion on the recount.
When they reconvened at 4 p.m. – still without a ruling from Goldsmith – Colleen Pero, one of the Republicans on the Board of Canvassers said that they had already given the Secretary of State authority to run the recount and they should give them authority to stop it so that an estimated 2,600 county workers don’t head to their counting stations Thursday morning. By Thursday, 34 counties will be recounting the ballots cast for president.
Meanwhile, we await Judge Goldsmith’s ruling.
Meanwhile, Ingham County has already completed its recount and County Clerk Barb Byrum announced it with this epic mic drop:
UPDATE 3: The recount has now been halted. Click HERE for more.
[CC image credit: Gage Skidmore | Flickr]