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Michigan canvassers board to finalize election results after November primary


The board is made up of two Democrats and two Republicans, will meet Monday to ensure numbers add up

The Michigan Board of State Canvassers will meet Monday to certify the results of the November elections. The board is made up of two Democrats and two Republicans. It will vote on whether to adopt a determination by the Michigan Bureau of Elections that the numbers add up.

The statewide tallies are based on results certified last week by county boards of canvassers. The process was quiet this year compared to 2020 – when some Republicans driven by unfounded conspiracy theories tried to stop certification of the tallies.

Christopher Thomas, who retired in 2017 after serving as the Michigan Bureau of Elections director for 36 years, said the board’s role is both practical and ceremonial. He says say it’s one of the last steps to make sure elected government is ready to go when new terms begin next year.

“It’s the final gong, if you will, that closes out the 2022 election cycle,” he said.

“It’s really to put the imprint of both parties coming forward and saying, ‘hear ye, hear ye, this the official results of the election,’” he told Michigan Public Radio. “It’s not one partisan officeholder doing the math. It’s a bipartisan effort.”

The board’s action also starts the clock for recount requests or court challenges. But, Thomas stressed, the board’s job is not to make legal decisions. It’s to look at vote totals and certify the math is correct.