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Politics & Government

Citizenship box on Michigan ballot goes to court

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Steve Carmody/Michigan Radio
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DETROIT (AP) - Michigan Secretary of State Ruth Johnson has been ordered to court as critics try to stop the use of a citizen check-off box on the November 6th ballot.

Detroit federal Judge Paul Borman has set a hearing for Friday. A coalition of civil rights groups and labor unions is asking Borman to issue an injunction.

The secretary of state's office is defending the citizenship box, saying voters still will be given a ballot even if they refuse to answer the citizenship question. A poll worker will read a brief statement that says a voter must be a U.S. citizen.

State lawyers representing the secretary of state say a citizenship question could prevent an unqualified person from voting and committing a crime.

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