Trump, Whitmer Spar on Twitter Over Michigan Supreme Court Ruling

President Trump on Wednesday praised the Michigan Supreme Court’s ruling overturning Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s emergency powers, calling it a “big win” for the state.

The Michigan Supreme Court on Friday struck down Whitmer’s emergency ruling, saying the governor had issued her numerous executive orders pertaining to coronavirus restrictions unconstitutionally, rendering them null.

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Whitmer Asks Michigan Supreme Court To Clarify Ruling Takes Effect Oct. 30, Republicans Say Order Effective Immediately

Gov. Gretchen Whitmer on Monday asked the state’s Supreme Court for clarification that its recent order overturning her emergency powers does not take effect until October 30.

The ruling, mandated October 2, struck down the statute under which Whitmer had been issuing coronavirus emergency orders, nullifying the orders and saying that their issuance had been unconstitutional.

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Michigan Supreme Court Overturns Whitmer’s Emergency Powers

The Michigan Supreme Court on Friday struck down Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s coronavirus orders, following months of back and forth between the Democratic governor and the Republican legislature.

The court said that Whitmer cited authority for her multitude of executive orders from a 1945 law that is unconstitutional, the Emergency Powers of the Governor Act of 1945. Republicans said Whitmer should used have a 1976 law, which requires legislature approval to continue after any emergency declaration lasting 28 days, ClickOnDetroit said.

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MCC to Host Trump 2020 Cannonball Run on October 11

The Michigan Conservative Coalition (MCC) has announced the Michigan Trump 2020 Cannonball Run, a Trump rally taking place on October 11.

The rally’s route will stretch from the Ohio and Indiana borders via Interstate-75 and US 131, respectively, and will end at the Mackinac Bridge. Participants are asked to their cars, trucks, van, motorcycle or other highway-legal vehicle to enter their closest highway entrance to drive on either I-75 or US 131 along the route. The MCC’s suggested drive is for one hour north and then reverse course and drive an hour south.

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Whitmer Extends State of Emergency Order Until October 27

Gov. Gretchen Whitmer extended Michigan’s state of emergency order on Tuesday, pushing back its end date until October 27.

Whitmer originally declared a state of emergency in Michigan on March 10 in response to the coronavirus pandemic and has continuously extended it since then. She also extended four other executive orders that protect people in prison and long-term care facilities, those who are working in establishments that sell food, and those who are considered at-risk.

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Former Michigan Secretaries of State Sue Benson Over Absentee Ballot Counting

Two former GOP secretaries of state are suing current Michigan Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson over a recent ruling that allows the department to count absentee ballots that arrive after Election Day.

Michigan Court of Claims Judge Cynthia Stephens ruled earlier this month that absentee ballots postmarked for November 2 can still be counted as valid even if they arrive up to two weeks after polls close on Election Day, a temporary rule for this election that goes against normal procedure, which generally allows absentee ballots to only be counted if they arrive before 8 p.m. on Election Day.

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Whitmer Relents, Signs New Executive Order Re-Opening More Gathering Places

Michigan movie theaters and performance venues will soon be allowed to reopen, according to an executive order signed by Gov. Gretchen Whitmer.

The order, which also amends coronavirus safety mandates in schools, will allow a variety of previously closed entertainment venues, including indoor theaters, cinemas, performance venues, arcades, bingo halls, bowling centers, indoor climbing facilities and trampoline parks, to reopen statewide on October 9.

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MDHHS Publishes Trick-or-Treating Guidelines, Even As CDC Recommends Against It

The Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) released guidelines for trick-or-treating on Thursday, going against guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), which recommended against the activity entirely.

In addition to standard coronavirus safety guidelines such as mask-wearing and social distancing, the MDHHS also recommended that homeowners passing out candy use duct tape to mark six-foot distances leading from where the candy is, distributing candy on a disinfected table to limit direct contact and handing out candy in an open space. For trick-or-treaters, it suggested participating in one-way trick-or-treating and only going to houses with safety measures in place.

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House Education Committee Approves Legislation to Increase Access to Apprenticeship Programs

The Michigan House of Representatives Education Committee approved legislation that increases accessibility to apprenticeship programs in high schools on Thursday.

The legislation, sponsored by Rep. Ben Frederick (R-85-Owosso), brings Michigan apprenticeship and pre-apprenticeship programs in line with federal workforce mandates so federal funding can be used.

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Whitmer Signs Orders Wednesday to Make Michigan Carbon Neutral by 2050

Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer signed two executive orders on Wednesday aimed at making Michigan carbon-neutral by 2050.

The first order creates an advisory council within the Department of Environment, Great Lakes, and Energy (EGLE) called the Council on Climate Solutions, which will be tasked with developing and implementing the MI Healthy Climate Plan. The second order creates EGLE’s Office of Environmental Justice Public Advocate, which will “ensure fairness for and representation from underserved communities,” the governor’s office said.

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More Than a Third of Michigan Voters Have Requested Absentee Ballots

A third of active Michigan voters have requested absentee ballots so far, a spokesperson from Michigan’s Secretary of State (SOS) office announced on Tuesday.

More than 2.39 million Michigan voters have requested ballots, more than 31 percent of the 7.7 million people registered to vote in Michigan and 35 percent of the state’s 6.7 million active voters, according to state data released by the SOS. Detroit City has requested the highest number of absentee ballots at 109,561 ballots, followed by Ann Arbor City at 40,786 ballots and Sterling Heights City at 32,083.

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Trump Includes Michigan Judge on SCOTUS Shortlist

President Trump has pointed to several female judges — including a Michigan judge — to fill the seat of the late Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, according to an interview he gave on Fox News’s “Fox & Friends.”

Ginsburg passed away on Friday at age 87. She had served on the U.S Supreme Court for 27 years and was championed as a solid liberal vote.

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Michigan Judge Rules Absentee Ballots That Arrive up to Two Weeks After Election Day Still Valid

A Michigan state judge ruled on Friday that absentee ballots that arrive after Election Day can still be counted.

Michigan Court of Claims Judge Cynthia Stephens ruled that absentee ballots that are postmarked for November 2 can still be counted even if they arrive up to two weeks after polls close on Election Day, according to reporting from CNN and ABC News. Absentee ballots were previously only allowed to be counted if they arrived before 8 p.m. on Election Day.

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Trump, Benson Spar on Twitter Over Misprinted Overseas Ballots

President Trump and Michigan’s Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson sparred on Twitter on Thursday after overseas ballots incorrectly listed a Libertarian candidate in the spot of Vice President Mike Pence.

The Bureau of Election alerted clerks on Tuesday after it was discovered that more than 400 overseas ballots had listed Libertarian vice presidential candidate Jeremy Cohen instead of Pence, according to The Detroit News. The bureau asked clerks to notify the recipients of the ballots and issue corrected ones.

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UM, MSU Excited to See Football Return, Fans Have Mixed Reactions

Michigan sports fans had mixed reactions after the Big Ten conference announced it would be bringing back football this year, while conference leaders rejoiced.

The conference, which had originally postponed playing because of the coronavirus pandemic, announced on Wednesday that it will resume games on October 24, according to ESPN.

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Michigan Begins Identifying Schools with COVID-19 Outbreaks

The Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) has begun publishing coronavirus outbreak information broken down by school building.

The state had previously been confirming regions in which outbreaks were taking place at schools, but not identifying the individual schools or school districts.

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Trump Goes After Whitmer at Rally, Saying She ‘Doesn’t Have a Clue’

President Trump slammed Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer during a rally on Thursday, saying that she “doesn’t have a clue.”

“Michigan has already gained and regained more than half of the jobs that it lost — and if your state was ever allowed to safely reopen by your governor, who doesn’t have a clue, just like Joe [Biden], you would have gained far more than that,” Trump said in a rally in Saginaw County, according to FOX 2.

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University of Michigan Resident Advisers, Cafeteria Workers Join Strike

The resident assistants at University of Michigan have joined protests over the school’s coronavirus regulations, announcing earlier this week that they would be striking.

More than 100 residential advisers voted to strike in demand of increased coronavirus protections, hazard pay and additional communication about coronavirus statistics at the school, according to reporting by The Michigan Daily, the student newspaper for the University of Michigan. The strike began Wednesday morning and mostly impacts mailroom operations and lock-out services. Participating resident assistants will also not perform duty shifts, although they will informally enforce COVID-19 safety regulations.

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Michigan Bill Allowing Early Vote Counting Still Not Passed

A bill that would allow Michigan polling clerks to begin processing absentee ballots before Election Day is still in legislative limbo, Michigan Senate Majority Leader Mike Shirkey said, adding that the Senate continues to “finesse” the proposal.

The bill is sponsored by Sen. Ruth Johnson (R-14-Holly), who is a former secretary of state and chair of the Michigan Senate Elections Committee. It calls for allowing clerks to begin processing, but not counting, ballots before the election, according to The Associated Press.

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Michigan Launches Ambassador Program To Guide Businesses Through Coronavirus Guidelines

Michigan state employees will visit businesses one-on-one to help them reopen safely under a swath of COVID-19 safety guidelines.

The program, launched by the Department of Labor and Economic and the Michigan Occupational Safety and Health Administration (MIOSHA), features ambassadors that will visit businesses to help them navigate through safety guidelines and regulations. Unlike their MIOSHA counterparts, these ambassadors will not issue penalties or citations.

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University of Michigan Graduate Student Employees to Go on Strike

The graduate student union at the University of Michigan has voted to go on strike beginning Tuesday, the group announced on Monday.

The Graduate Employees’ Organizations represents Graduate Student Instructors and Graduate Student Staff Assistants at Ann Arbor-based University of Michigan.

The four-day strike is protesting the university reopening for in-person classes during the coronavirus pandemic and has the potential to be reauthorized for a longer work stoppage. The union called the strike a “historic moment.”

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DeVos Tells Michigan Schools Not to Expect Federal Testing Waivers

Michigan schools should not anticipate waivers to allow schools to skip statewide testing for the upcoming school year, according to a letter sent by U.S. Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos to State Superintendent Michael Rice.

Rice and State Board of Education President Casandra Ulbrich had, in light of the continuing coronavirus pandemic, requested waivers from DeVos that would allow Michigan schools to skip student assessments typically required federally.

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Michigan Conservative Coalition to Host ‘Back the Blue’ Event in Frankenmuth

The Michigan Conservative Coalition (MCC) will be holding a MAGA Back the Blue event on September 13 that will feature a classic car and biker cruise and a flyover in Frankenmuth, Michigan.

The event, which will run from noon to 4 p.m., will be raising money for the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund and local law enforcement K-9 Units. The Trump Unity Bridge, a touring support team for President Trump, will also be in attendance.

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Michigan to Publish Which Schools Have Coronavirus Outbreaks

Michigan will begin identifying K-12 schools that have coronavirus outbreaks beginning on September 14, a state spokesperson told BridgeMI on Tuesday.

Up to this point, the state has been confirming the regions in which the outbreaks are occurring, but have not provided more specific information, such as the specific school districts in which the outbreaks are located.

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86 Percent of Michigan Schools to Offer In-Person Learning

Eighty-six percent of school districts in Michigan will offer some or all in-person instruction at the beginning of the school year, according to a study conducted by Michigan State University (MSU).

The study, released Friday, showed that 59 percent of Michigan school districts will be offering in-person schooling five days a week and 27 percent will be offering it at least two to three days a week.

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Prison Union Calls for Removal of Michigan Prison Director for Coronavirus Response

A union representing Michigan prison officers has called for the removal of Corrections Department Director Heidi Washington due to the state’s handling of the coronavirus pandemic inside prisons.

According to a letter obtained by the Detroit Free Press, the Michigan Corrections Organization says it has lost confidence in Michigan leadership.

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Department of Justice Requests Nursing Home Data on COVID-19 Deaths from Michigan

The Civil Right Division of the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) has requested information about COVID-19 deaths in nursing homes from the state of Michigan.

The request, made on Wednesday, will help the department determine if it will open up an investigation under the federal Civil Rights of Institutionalized Persons Act, which will identify if the state orders requiring coronavirus-positive patients to be admitted to nursing homes were responsible for the deaths of residents.

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Two Michigan Residents Charged with Defrauding $1.8 Million in Unemployment Scam

Two Michigan residents have been charged in a criminal complaint for their alleged role in defrauding $1.8 million in unemployment benefits from the state.

Jermaine Rose, 41, is an employee of the State of Michigan’s Unemployment Insurance Agency whose duties include processing and verifying the legitimacy of unemployment insurance claims. Beginning in May, Rose allegedly used his employee access to authorize payment on hundreds of fraudulent claims, specifically overriding “fraud stops” on claims that had been flagged by the state computer system as potentially fraudulent.

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Whitmer Reportedly Lone Governor Preventing Big 10 Football

Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer could be a “major roadblock” to the start of the Big 10 football season, according to Ohio State insider Jeff Snook.

The Spun reported that Snook is saying that Whitmer against University of Michigan playing football.

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Michigan Fines Businesses More Than $33,000 for Coronavirus Safety Violations

Six Michigan businesses were fined more than $33,000 after they failed to follow safety protocol designed to prevent the spread of COVID-19, the state announced on Friday.

The businesses were fined under “general duty” citations through the Michigan Occupational Safety and Health Administration (MIOSHA), rather than through any of Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s executive orders. The “general duty” clause requires employers to provide a workplace free from recognized harms and carries a fine of up to $7,000.

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Michigan Announces 13 Commissioners to Redraw District Voting Lines

Michigan has announced the 13 citizens who will be in charge of redrawing Michigan’s congressional and legislative boundaries for the next decade, drawing their names in a random selection process on Monday.

The Michigan Independent Citizens Redistricting Commission is made of four Democrats, four Republicans and four people not associated with either party.

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Whitmer Calls for Unity, Bashes Trump’s COVID-19 Response in DNC Speech

Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer called for unity and for Americans to “rally together” to fight the coronavirus during a speech at the Democratic National Convention on Monday night.

Before her speech even began, however, Whitmer was caught mouthing an expletive on a live feed.

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Whitmer Orders Coronavirus Testing in Prisons

Michigan jails and prisons will now have to adopt testing protocols for inmates, according to an executive order signed by Gov. Gretchen Whitmer on Saturday.

The order says that Michigan Department of Corrections must conduct testing at entry, transfer and release of any prisoner, as well as suspend transfers from jails that do not have similar protocols.

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Michigan, Ford, FEMA to Donate Four Million Masks to Vulnerable State Residents

The state of Michigan, Ford Motor Company and the Federal Emergency Management Agency will be partnering to provide four million free masks to Michigan residents who are vulnerable to COVID-19, Gov. Gretchen Whitmer announced on Friday.

Masks will be given to low-income residents, seniors, schools and homeless shelters through the MI Mask Aid program, which is part of the Mask Up Michigan campaign. The program aims to get masks to vulnerable populations, including minority residents who have been adversely impacted by the pandemic as a result of racism, the governor’s office said.

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Three Women File Lawsuit Against Michigan Over ‘Tampon Tax’

Three Michigan women have filed a lawsuit against the Michigan Treasury Department on Tuesday in order to stop taxation of feminine hygiene products like tampons, citing gender discrimination and the 14th Amendment of the Constitution.

Emily Beggs, Claire Pfeiffer and Wei Ho filed the lawsuit on August 11 in the Court of Claims, according to MLive. The lawsuit says that collecting taxes on feminine hygiene products is discriminatory based on the 14th Amendment, which protects against “intentional inequalities.”

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More Than $37 Million in Grant Funding Available to Close Technology Gap, Provide Mental Health Support in Schools

School districts seeking additional funding to help offset the coronavirus pandemic can now apply for a grant from the Education Equity Fund.

The fund, created by the Michigan Department of Education, is aimed at helping to close the technology gap and provide mental health services for students and staff.

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Whitmer Lashes Out at President Trump for ‘Cutting’ Unemployment Benefits

Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer lashed out at President Trump in a statement on Sunday after the president cut the enhanced federal unemployment benefit from $600 a week to $400 a week after Democrats in the House failed to make a deal with the Republican-controlled Senate on the matter.

Trump signed four executive orders on Saturday, one of which lowers the enhanced unemployment benefit by a third through the end of the year, with states being required to contribute $100, according to MLive. Unemployed Americans originally received $600 per week through the CARES Act, which expired July 31.

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Whitmer Calls for Staff and Children at Day Camps and Child-Care Centers to Wear Masks

Both children and staff are required to wear face coverings while at child-care centers and day camps, according to a new executive order signed by Gov. Gretchen Whitmer on Thursday.

The order requires all staff and children ages 2 and up to wear a face covering on a school bus or other transportation. It also requires staff and children ages 4 and up to wear a face covering in all indoor common spaces. Staff and children ages 12 and up are required to wear a face covering in classrooms, homes, cabins, or other indoor small-group settings.

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Whitmer Creates Black Leadership Advisory Council, Calls Racism a ‘Public Health Issue’

Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer created the Black Leadership Advisory Council on Wednesday, declaring racism a “public health issue.”

The council — the first of its kind in Michigan — will give advice to the governor and help recommend policies to combat systemic racism. This includes identifying state laws that create or perpetuate inequities, promoting legislation that seeks to correct racial inequality within Michigan, helping community groups serve Black communities and promoting the cultural arts within Black communities, according to the governor’s office.

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University of Michigan Students Required to Observe ‘Enhanced Social Distancing’ Prior to Arrival on Campus

University of Michigan is requiring its students to participate in “enhanced social distancing” for two weeks before arriving on campus, according to a letter published for students earlier this week.

The school is offering both in-person and online classes and said that it estimates roughly 70 percent of undergraduate credits can be taken online during the upcoming semester.

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Whitmer Closes Bars Statewide, Restricts Indoor Gatherings to 10 People

Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer on Thursday suspended indoor bar services statewide and limited indoor gatherings to 10 people, citing “super-spreading” events in Lansing, Saline and the Torch Lake area.

“After seeing a resurgence in cases connected to social gatherings across the state, we must further limit gatherings for the health of our community and economy,” Whitmer said in a statement. “By taking these strong actions, we will be better positioned to get our children back into classrooms and avoid a potentially devastating second wave.”

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Detroit Police Chief James Craig Cites Unified City, Not Backing Down for Peaceful City Among Protests

Detroit Police Chief James Craig credited the city’s success in remaining peaceful during nationwide protests and riots with having a city that has stood together and a police force that refuses to give up “the ground to the radicals.”

In an appearance on Fox News’s Tucker Carlson Tonight on Tuesday, Craig told Carlson that “we don’t retreat here in Detroit.”

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Sen. Peters Asks FEMA to Help Fund Michigan Coronavirus School Response

Sen. Gary Peters (D-MI) sent a letter to the Federal Emergency Management Agency on Monday asking the agency to help fund schools in Michigan as they prepare to open during the coronavirus.

In the letter, Peters pushed FEMA to allow schools in Michigan and nationwide to access to funding from the Disaster Relief Fund to help pay for public safety trainings, adapting classrooms and acquiring personal protective equipment for students and staff.

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City of Detroit Seeking Photos of Coronavirus Victims for Memorial

The City of Detroit is seeking photos of those who lost their lives to the coronavirus to display as part of a city memorial event.

Detroit will host Detroit Memorial Day on August 31 to honor city residents who died because of COVID-19, Mayor Mike Duggan announced earlier this month. The city plans to install large photo boards with the submitted pictures along a route on Belle Isle.

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Allen West Ousts James Dickey as Texas Republican Party Chair

Allen West clinched the position of party leader for the Texas Republicans early Monday morning, ousting James Dickey, who was first elected to the position in 2017.

Retired Army Lt. Col. West won 22 state Senate districts to Dickey’s four and claimed victory around 3:30 a.m, according to the Statesman News Network. Five districts are yet to report.

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Whitmer Calls For Federal Mask Mandate in NYT Op-Ed

Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer argued for a national face mask mandate in an opinion piece published in the New York Times on Wednesday.

Citing various mask mandates from across the country, Whitmer said that wearing masks can “save lives and put ourselves in a better position to send our children back to school in the fall.”

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Michigan High School Fires Teacher After Pro-Trump Tweet

A Michigan high school is receiving backlash after it fired a teacher shortly after he tweeted “Trump is our president.”

Varsity baseball coach and social studies teacher Justin Kucera said that Walled Lake school district gave him the option of being fired or resigning after he had tweeted his support of President Trump and for reopening schools, according to the Washington Free Beacon.

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