Federal judge rules Rep. John Conyers Jr. allowed on ballot

By Kyle Johnson,

One of the senior-most members of Congress will be on the primary ballot after all, their 26th time, a federal judge ruled on Friday.

As previously reported, Congressman John Conyers Jr. (D-Mich) was going to be left off the primary ballot as many of the 2,000 required signatures collected were invalidated.

Wayne County Clerk Cathy Garrett said that only about 592 of signatures were valid. Some signatures were deemed not acceptable as the signee was either not a registered voter or was approached by a petition circulator who was not considered qualified as they themselves weren't registered to vote.

After a failed appeal to Garrett, Conyers' lawyers went to federal court, arguing that it violated the First Amendment requiring petitioners be registered to vote, reports The New York Times. They were able to cite precedent with a 2008 Ohio case that called into question a similar law.

Michigan Sen. Bert Johnson, who is running the campaign, said, "We believe it's a very big win for the voters. It puts one of the more ugly parts of the campaign process behind us."

U.S. District Judge Matthew Leitman, who issued the injunction, said that it was "an exceptionally difficult case."

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