Conyers’s son in danger of missing ballot in Michigan

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Local officials say John Conyers III, the son of former Rep. John Conyers Jr. (D-Mich.), has fallen short of signature requirements to make the ballot, according to a internal report obtained by The Detroit News.

That finding could jeopardize his status on the primary ballot in August, throwing a serious wrench into a crowded field of Democrats.

John Conyers III is running in a crowded field looking to replace his father, who resigned in December amid reports of sexual harassment. There will be a special election on Election Day to pick a candidate who will serve out the rest of the term through 2018, and another on the same ballot for a full two-year term that begins in 2019. There will be two primary elections in August to determine the candidates for those elections. 


The Detroit News reported that while John Conyers III submitted more than 1,900 signatures on petitions for both races, the Wayne County Clerk’s Office found more than half of those signatures invalid. That would put him under the 1,000 signature mark needed for each petition to be ratified and for him to make the ballot.

The county clerk investigation came after John Conyers III’s cousin, state Sen. Ian Conyers (D), officially challenged the authenticity of his cousin’s signatures. Ian Conyers is also running for the Democratic nomination in the upcoming August primary.

The News notes that the recommendation to keep John Conyers III off the ballot is only a recommendation and that County Clerk Cathy Garrett will make the final decision this week. 

Garrett’s office did not immediately respond to a request for comment. 

Ian Conyers has a vested interest in ensuring that his cousin stays off the ballot, Democrats say, since having two Conyers on the ballot would ruin any name identification advantage he could receive, blunting his chances of surviving a primary. Ian Conyers is also running in both races. 

Along with the two members of the Conyers family, the field for the safe-Democratic seat includes former state Reps. Rashida Tlaib, Detroit City Council President Brenda Jones, Westland Mayor Bill Wild, state Sen. Coleman Young III and former state Rep. Shanelle Jackson. 

Tags 2018 midterms 2018 primary election John Conyers Michigan Michigan

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