Ingham County Circuit Court Affirmative Action Ruling

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Ingham County Circuit Court Judge Paula Manderfield is ordering the State Board of Canvassers to cancel its okay of a petition submitted by the Michigan Civil RIghts Initiative. Manderfield ruled Thursday that the petition was incomplete because it made no mention of a possible ammendment to the state constitution.

State Representative Leon Drolet, Co-Chair of the Michigan Civil Rights Initiative, says the State Board of Canvassers does not judge the language of the petition and therefore the ruling has no effect on the initiative. The petition to ban public schools and agencies from granting prefrence based on sex, color, race or ethnicity started circulating in January. Drolet says other lawsuits are pending and more are expected before the issue is settled.

The group 'By Any Means Necessary' was one of the plantiffs in last weeks lawsuit against the State Board of Canvassers. George Washington, attorney for the group, says last weeks ruling is a great vicotry for civil rights and for the people of Michigan.

The Attorney General's Office represents the State Board of Canvassers and could appeal the ruling. A spokesperson for the Attorney General's Office says all signatures collected on petitions are still valid at this point.