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Court won’t back gun ban outside Michigan polling places

DETROIT (AP) — The Michigan appeals court on Thursday rejected an appeal from a Democratic state official who wants to ban the open carry of guns outside polling places.

The court, in a 3-0 order, declined to hear the case but noted that it’s already illegal to intimidate voters or aggressively wave a gun in public.

“Anyone who intimidates a voter in Michigan by brandishing a firearm or, for that matter, by threatening with a knife, baseball bat, fist, or otherwise menacing behavior, is committing a felony under existing law,” the court said.

The three-judge panel included Brock Swartzle, who is a candidate for the state Supreme Court.

The order came two days after a judge said Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson had exceeded her authority in prohibiting the open carry of guns within 100 feet of a polling place. Court of Claims Judge Christopher Murray said the policy didn’t go through a formal rule-making process required under Michigan law.

Attorney General Dana Nessel, a Democrat, said she’ll now ask the Supreme Court to take the case.

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