Fiers bid as a write-in may be illegal

August 12, 2012


Over the weekend Sheriff Jeff Fiers announced on his Facebook page that he will be conducting a write-in campaign against Republican candidate for sheriff Kim Cole. Cole defeated Fiers in Tuesday’s primary election. There is no Democrat candidate.

But, Fiers’ announcement opens up some questions.

The main question is can he legally run a campaign for sheriff in the November general election? I have been researching the Michigan Sore Loser Law, which states that the loser in a primary election can’t then run as an independent in the general election.

To run a write-in campaign, one must fill out a letter of intent with the county clerk’s office. This would seem that the person is declaring himself an independent candidate for office, which is a violation of the sore loser law.

We intend on following up on this question with some lawyers and with County Clerk Jim Riffle.

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