WASHINGTON – Wayne County Michigan’s board of canvassers deadlocked this evening 2-2 on certifying the Nov. 3 election. Wayne County is the largest county in the state of Michigan with more than 1.7 million people, nearly 70% of whom are Black. Detroit, the largest metropolitan area in the state, is 78% Black.
The deadlock comes one day after Trump allies voluntarily dismissed a failed lawsuit attempting to throw out tens of thousands of votes, overwhelmingly cast by Black voters, in Wayne County, combined with continued rhetoric from the outgoing president that he did not lose the November 3 election. Kristen Clarke, president and executive director of the Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law, issued the following statement:
“Our democracy is built on respecting the will of the people when they express it at the ballot box. President Trump and his allies’ relentless and anti-democratic attempts to undermine the election combined with the Wayne County Board of Canvassers’ failure to certify the vote are part of an attempt to promote chaos, confusion, and discord. The will of voters is clear. As the process moves to the state level, eligible Black voters and others across Wayne County, who overcame tremendous obstacles to vote this season, are being rendered, second-class citizens. Astonishingly, Chairwoman Monica Palmer indicated a willingness to certify results across Wayne County with the exception of Detroit. This is striking evidence that Palmer’s decision was likely racially motivated and intended to lock out votes cast by eligible voters in majority-Black Detroit. We will continue to fight these post-election attempts to disenfranchise voters on a scale that is simply unprecedented in modern times. Deadlock or not, in America the people will always have the last say.”