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Dear Friends and Neighbors,

Welcome to the latest edition of my e-newsletter.

Below you’ll find a legislative update along with some additional resources I hope you find helpful.

Thank you for allowing me to represent you in the Michigan Senate. I am grateful each and every day to work for the people of the 17th Senate District.

In Liberty,

Jonathan Lindsey
State Senator
17th District

Democrat-driven election bills cause election integrity concerns

Recently, in a hurried attempt to implement Proposal 2, legislation was introduced that will further weaken our elections.

The Democrat majorities recently passed several radical bills that aim to leverage the allowances granted by Proposal 2. These new bills would codify provisions of Proposal 2 into state law, like in-person voting up to 29 days prior to Election Day; sending permanent absentee ballots to individuals upon a single request; and mandating that each municipality must have one ballot box per 15,000 voters. The bills would also go even further by allowing things like accepting high school and college identifications as valid identification at the polls.

These proposed bills are part of the ongoing changes being pushed by the new majority, which have already included moving up the presidential primary and discussions to include Michigan in the national popular vote compact.

While some argue that these bills will increase accessibility, there are concerns about the potential disparities they may create. For instance, the early in-person voting period could range from a minimum of nine days to a maximum of 29 days, depending on each municipality's decision. This variation may result in unfair access, with some areas offering the full 29 days while others can only afford to maintain nine days. Moreover, the extended early voting period poses financial challenges for local municipalities, as they need to allocate additional resources for staffing during those extra days.

Estimates suggest that the state would need to allocate approximately $2.1 million to purchase an extra 690 ballot boxes before the next election. Additionally, an estimated $4.8 million would be required for absentee ballots alone in the upcoming election year.

We will continue to closely monitor these developments and provide you with timely updates. It is crucial that we stay informed and engaged in constructive discussions about our electoral system.

Senate Democrats implement Obamacare guidelines into state law

Senate Democrats recently passed bills incorporating certain aspects of Obamacare into state law. However, there are concerns about the necessity of these bills, considering they essentially mirror existing federal standards.

The Democratic lawmakers behind these bills are out of touch, as they continue to advocate for Obamacare, despite the drastic increase in healthcare costs since it became law. Rather than focusing on initiatives that could provide tangible relief to Michigan residents with health insurance, Democrats continue to double down on bad policy.

While these pointless bills have been put forward, I have been working to gather bipartisan support for legislation centered around enhancing medical pricing transparency. Health care policy must tackle out- of-control cost increases, which starts with transparency in pricing to drive a more competitive model.

I will continue working to champion this cause.

Reversing Michigan’s decline?

The governor recently announced a new council tasked with turning around Michigan’s population trends. This council is a deflection from the governor’s failed policies that are driving people and job opportunities out of our state.

Policies like:

Complicated tax changes that are unfairly applied and will not spark economic growth. Democrats in the Legislature fought against a reduction in the state’s income tax rate that would make Michigan a more attractive and affordable place to live, work and raise a family.
Repealing Michigan’s “Right to Work” law that gave workers a choice on whether they wanted to join a union, and helped the state emerge from its massive recession in the early 2000s.
Lowering education standards in Michigan. Democrats are lowering the bar for our teachers and students by eliminating every law they can find that focuses on better outcomes for students.

I am proud the Republicans in the Senate nominated me as our representative on the governor's council. Although she may be treating this as a gimmick, if my nomination is accepted, I certainly will not be. I will bring pro-growth economic perspective and a focus on reversing our state's decline through tax reform, commonsense regulation, worker freedom and holding the bar high so our students receive a world class education.

Senate passes bloated, unsustainable spending plan

The Legislature recently passed the largest budget in our history, spending over $81 billion of your money. The process to achieve this budget was shameful and it disrespected every hard-working Michigander in this state.

Secret negotiations and deal making culminated in budget votes that took place only a few hours after the final budget bills were revealed. The result was that the Legislature effectively “had to pass the budget to know what was in it.”

The broken process alone should have been enough for every lawmaker to vote no, and I am proud to have done exactly that.

Even worse, however, is what is in the budget:

• A billion dollars of pork projects doled out to secure individual votes.
• Race-based spending that violates our state constitution.
• Funding for “thought police” to come after people who express the “wrong” opinions.
• Increased funding for corporate welfare handouts.
• Reduced pay for teachers (through automatic deductions to unions).
• Massive increases in ongoing programs and personnel that will be unsustainable in the near future.

This budget represents nearly a 50% increase over five years. How many Michiganders can say they have seen a 50% increase in their personal budgets over the last five years? It is disheartening to witness such reckless spending, especially when there are pressing needs that could benefit from these funds.

I will continue to advocate for fiscal discipline and focused spending on critical areas that will help all Michiganders.

The 17th Senate District

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The 17th state Senate District includes Branch, Cass, and St. Joseph counties, along with parts of Berrien, Calhoun, Jackson and Hillsdale counties.

Senator Jonathan Lindsey
3500 Connie B. Binsfeld Office Building
P.O. Box 30036
Lansing, MI 48909-7536

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