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Michigan repeals law that gave Gov. Gretchen Whitmer emergency powers

In a rebuke to Gretchen Whitmer, the Republican-led Michigan state House of Representatives repealed a 76-year-old law that gave the governor broad emergency powers used to lock down much of the state during the COVID-19 pandemic.

In a 60-48 vote mainly along party lines, the Emergency Powers Act of 1945 was officially scuttled. The state Senate had already voted to kill the act last week.

Though the legislation does not take effect immediately it was a clear shot at Whitmer, whose strict shut-down policies stirred protests last year, but also made her a political darling among Democrats.

Because the law came to the state legislature by a petition drive, under Michigan law it is not subject to a veto from Whitmer and will go into effect 90 days after the legislative session.

The petition was organized by a group called Unlock Michigan, its spokesman, Fred Wszolek said, “Our Unlock Michigan citizen army collected over 540,000 signatures in just 80 days. Now, 292 days later, we’ll complete our mission with a final vote in the Legislature to end Gov. Whitmer’s rule by decree,”

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