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Ann Mullen,, (313) 400-8562  

October 16, 2020


DETROIT, Mich. – The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) of Michigan applauds Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson for issuing guidance today to clerks and the public that prohibits people from openly carrying guns within 100 feet of polling places on Election Day, November 3rd. This comes in response to numerous inquiries that the Secretary of State has received from clerks and residents across Michigan regarding this issue. Benson’s guidance also prohibits people from openly carrying guns within 100 feet of clerk’s offices and absentee counting board facilities. 

This is ACLU of Michigan Executive Director Dave Noble’s reaction: 

“We are in full support of Secretary of State Benson for taking steps to ensure the sanctity of polling places is protected. The Supreme Court has long recognized that polling places should be an ‘island of calm,’ free from distraction and interference. Therefore, just as people are not allowed to carry signs or pass out political literature within 100 feet of polling places, people should not be allowed to openly carry guns. Voting must be easy, accessible, and free of all barriers as it is the cornerstone of our democracy.”