Tim Skubick: Tuesday's Detroit primary is anything but normal

Tim Skubick: Tuesday's Detroit primary is anything but normal

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When the polls close tonight in Detroit, all the anchor guys and gals will sit there with nothing to say. Usually at 8:01 p.m. in a normal election they breathlessly announce the winner.

Tuesday's primary balloting in Detroit for mayor is anything but normal. If you were looney enough, you could predict a hanging chad disaster just waiting to explode. The state elections director doesn't think so, and in fact, Chris Thomas is super confident that everything will go smoothly.

The "X" factor is that the guy with the most money to burn does not have his name on the ballot.  He didn't follow the law.  Oops.

So after saying he would not run as a write-in, the former side kick for former Wayne County Executive Eddie McNamara, Mike Duggan, recanted and launched a very uphill write-in campaign to at least finish second in the primary vote.

A long shot to begin with, but not impossible given his political prowess and a ton of checks from the Detroit business community, things got more complicated when barber Mike Dugeon launched a write-in, too.

Duggan. Dugeon.

Hum. Pretty close.

Question: When the writing begins today, will voters know the difference?

Sen. Tupac Hunter (D-Detroit) who is a charter member of the Duggan, not Dugeon, inner circle argues, "Detroiters are intelligent. Detroiters can spell. We've done a great job of educating voters in terms of the write-in ballot. So I'm not cynical enough to think that this is going to be this huge disaster because somehow Detroit just can't get it."

Ultimately it will be four unelected officials who will referee this write-in situation after the good folks of Detroit do their thing.

The Wayne County Board of Canvassers will survey all the names and the variations thereof and conclude which names are in and which are out.

Mr. Thomas says the guideline is very clear: is there any doubt what the intent of the voter was? Trying to ordain "voter intent" does not sound like an exact science.

Yet these four obscure canvassers will decide just that which means likely somebody will disagree and say, "See ya in court."

Let's see. How long was it before they resolved the hanging chad mess in Florida?

Somebody get Al Gore on the horn.

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