Author: Barb Byrum

I’ve got 39 election bill problems and early tabulation ain’t one of them

I’ve got 39 election bill problems and early tabulation ain’t one of them

With outsiders trying to politicize election administration in the United States, it is time to enshrine voter protections and access to the ballot box nationwide. The constant drumbeat of election conspiracies, prompted by the former President and perpetuated by radical Republicans has resulted in suppressive legislation being introduced in 47 states across the country.  Some of these laws have even […]

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You can’t wash the stench of “Unlock Michigan” off Michigan Republican Mike Shirkey

You can’t wash the stench of “Unlock Michigan” off Michigan Republican Mike Shirkey

Yesterday, I wrote about the one year anniversary of the first diagnosed COVID case in Michigan.  Today, I want to spend some time talking about the coordinated attacks Governor Whitmer has faced as she has tried to save the lives of Michiganders.  I have shared my previous thoughts on Senator Mike Shirkey. But those were merely his words and actions […]

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Remembering life before COVID-19 — And looking ahead

Remembering life before COVID-19 — And looking ahead

We knew that March 10, 2020 would be a historic day as it was the Presidential Primary Election in Michigan and voters exercised their vote to select their party’s nominee for the Presidency. I spent Election Day, as I always do, fielding calls and questions from local clerks, ensuring that polls were open, tabulators working, and issues dealt with.  One […]

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2021: A far more Dangerous year for Democracy in America than 2020

2021: A far more Dangerous year for Democracy in America than 2020

Our political process was tested in 2020 in ways that it has never been tested before.  With the outbreak of COVID-19 nationwide, election administrators were forced to come up with creative ways to make sure voters could cast their ballots safely, while trying to avoid large gatherings at polling places, wherever possible. Election infrastructure and processes had to be updated […]

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Sunshine on the Horizon: Finally some Progress, Michigan

Sunshine on the Horizon: Finally some Progress, Michigan

There is a common convention that sunshine is the best disinfectant. While that does not apply to the COVID-19 pandemic (wearing a mask, washing your hands, using hand sanitizer, and getting vaccinated when you are eligible are the answers there, not sunshine), it does apply to another scourge that has plagued Michigan for decades; one that will hopefully be rectified […]

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For Michigan Republicans, racism is the brand, not a mistake

For Michigan Republicans, racism is the brand, not a mistake

The Michigan State Legislature, under the leadership of Mike Shirkey and Lee Chatfield has furthered the ‘boys club’ misogyny that has been present for years, its leaders have actively supported the insurrectionist militias that have attacked the Michigan and U.S. Capitol buildings, and has been incredibly backward in its view of LGBTQ+ rights. It being February, and Black History Month, […]

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MIGOP vs. LGBTQ+ — The story of Michigan Republican Lee Chatfield failing up – spectacularly

MIGOP vs. LGBTQ+ — The story of Michigan Republican Lee Chatfield failing up – spectacularly

I have taken the past couple of days to reflect on how Mike Shirkey and the Republicans in the Michigan State Legislature have contributed to the culture of misogyny and support of the insurrectionist militias that have attacked the U.S. Capitol. But these are not their only sins. They have also victimized and persecuted members of the LGBTQ+ community through […]

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Mike’s Militia: Republican Institutional Support of Insurrectionists Unacceptable

Mike’s Militia: Republican Institutional Support of Insurrectionists Unacceptable

Yesterday I highlighted the bad behavior of the Michigan Senate Majority Leader, a handful of his colleagues, and the sexist environment that they have engendered through decades of underrepresentation for women in the halls of power in Lansing. But misogyny is not their only sin, so I thought it appropriate to share another.  The recent impeachment trial of Former President […]

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Misogyny in Michigan

Misogyny in Michigan

The Mike Shirkey I knew when I served in the Michigan House of Representatives was just as bad as the one we see today. I called him vile in 2012 and that description continues to hold true.  Being term-limited has only emboldened him to say terrible and misogynistic things out loud because he knows that he will never be held […]

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Register to Vote and Make a Plan to VOTE

Register to Vote and Make a Plan to VOTE

Yesterday was #RequestYourBallotDay while this weekend is #TokTheVote and September 22nd is National Voter Registration Day!  All of these election holidays have one goal in common:  Engage Voters! Trying to engage younger citizens to register to vote and participate in the electoral process is always a focus, especially when there is excitement around an election, like there typically is for […]

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Legislature: Do Your Job

Legislature should do their job, pass laws to make elections smoother The recent spat between Sen. Ruth Johnson and Sec. of State Jocelyn Benson regarding Benson’s mailing of absentee ballot applications to Michigan voters is not productive as we approach a significant presidential election in November and during a global pandemic. Instead of further spreading the misinformed claims made by […]

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