MICHIGAN: LGBT Rights Ballot Drive Folds

Michigan Live reports:

The proposal to add civil rights for LGBT people to Michigan’s constitution will no longer aim for the 2016 ballots, its organizer announced during a taping of public television show Off The Record Friday morning.

“We are suspending our 2016 campaign, but I can assure you this is not the end of Fair Michigan,” said organizer Dana Nessel, best known for arguing against the state of Michigan’s prohibition on same-sex marriage in a court case that went to the U.S. Supreme Court and ultimately legalized it nationally.

Fair Michigan was aiming to prohibit things like housing and employment discrimination based on gender, gender identity, sex or sexual orientation. Asked why the group was pausing its efforts, Nessel cited finances.

“It’s a financial issue. There’s no question that it’s a very expensive proposition to try to get a ballot proposal and particularly one that is a constitutional amendment,” Nessel said.

The ballot measure was opposed by Equality Michigan and the ACLU. Fair Michigan says they remain committed to putting the issue on the 2018 or 2020 ballot.