Friday, December 19, 2014

Michigan Presidential Primary Move Bottled Up in State House Until After Christmas

The Michigan legislature stretched what was to be its last day of the 2014 session working well into Friday morning on an 11 bill package with a sales tax increase to fund road repairs.

What the state House did not get to was the Senate-passed legislation that would move the presidential primary in the Wolverine state to March. What that means for SB 1159 is somewhat unclear. Both the Michigan House and Senate have adjourned (for the time being), but the 2014 session may not have been gaveled closed yet. As of this writing, the Michigan Legislature web site is showing that the state House is adjourned until Tuesday, December 30 at 11:30am.1 That may provide a window in which the presidential primary could be passed. Otherwise, it may simply be a casualty of a countdown clock that reached all zeroes.

Regardless, the presidential primary move to March is an idea endorsed by the state Republican Party and got broad bi-partisan support in the state Senate. SB 1159 may die somewhere in the committee-to-floor transition for 2014, but the presidential primary shift is something that will very likely be revived in 2015.

For now, though, the 2016 Michigan presidential primary remains in February, non-compliant with national party delegate selection rules.

1 The Senate has already acted on this, so as long as the House passes the bill in its Senate-passed form, it will be enrolled by/in the Senate. That would, of course, require the Senate to be in session in late December as well. Michigan Senate offices are closed December 22-January 4.

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