Duggan not blaming ballot issue on Detroit city clerk

Duggan not blaming ballot issue on Detroit city clerk

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Mike Duggan Mike Duggan
DETROIT (WJBK) -

It appears Tom Barrow has shifted his attacks from Mike Duggan to Detroit City Clerk Janice Winfrey.

"Ms. Winfrey must immediately resign and take responsibility for this debacle in the wake of this devastating decision against her judgement," Barrow said Tuesday.

While some disagree with a lot of what the mayoral candidate has to say, this is one argument that is gaining traction.

Duggan said Winfrey's staff told him he was in the clear when he filed his paperwork on April 2.

"If you read the clerk's instruction manual, they encourage you to file early to give you more time. They sent me a letter in the mail," Duggan said Wednesday.

But two separate courts read the charter differently, and since Duggan filed two weeks prior to his one year anniversary as a Detroit resident, he is no longer eligible to be on the ballot, which means more than a year of work and plenty of money has all been spent for nothing.

"The clerk should've stopped this right away. She should've known the charter. She should've known not to let Mr. Duggan go in that early," political consultant Steve Hood said.

"Clerk Winfrey should stay exactly where she is. The charter has to be fixed," said former Detroit City Council Member Sheila Cockrel.

Cockrel said the charter is full of contradictions. Even Duggan said he does not blame the clerk for this mess.

"I don't blame the clerk on this. If I'd been sitting in the election director's seat, I would've come to the same conclusion the city election director did. I don't blame her for what they did," he remarked.

"Let's not focus on trying to find somebody to blame. Let's not let somebody who's perennially has run for office for the last, I don't know, 40 years begin to like actually shape further public policy. That's ludicrous on its face," Cockrel said.

We did try to get in touch with Winfrey, but she did not return our calls for comment.

Tuesday night she did say that any suggestion that she should resign is absurd.

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