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Michigan Senate approves petition to revoke Whitmer's pandemic powers

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The GOP-led Michigan Senate on Thursday approved the Unlock Michigan campaign on a 20-15 vote, likely ending the 1945 law employed by Gov. Gretchen Whitmer to exercise pandemic powers for the past 16 months.

Democrats and Republicans exchanged heated remarks over COVID-19 policy.

“This petition will hamstring our leaders of both parties — from preventing or slowing the spread of a deadly disease. This is about our ability to react to other pandemics and disasters in the future,” Sen. Rosemary Bayer, D-Beverly Hills, said pre-vote.

Sen. Tom Barrett, R-Charlotte, pushed back, noting the state holds the emergency powers act of 1976 that grants broad authority to the executive branch in genuine emergencies and limits emergency declarations to 28 days without the Legislature’s approval.

“That balances the immediate need risk of the issue in front of us with the important protections of the separation of powers for the people in our state,” Barrett said.



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