COLDWATER (WTVB) - It looks like a new political party will be on the ballot for the first time since 2000, with the controversial Tea Party Wednesday submitting over 20,000 more signatures than required to get on the Nov. 2 General Election ballot. The paperwork and 59,400 signatures were submitted to the Secretary of State's office.
MIRS News service says Mark Steffek of Reese is the party's chair, but he is not known to have ties to any of the 60 Tea Party groups across the state. The petition is allegedly being circulated through Progressive Campaign Inc, but the source of funding is not known. The Michigan Democratic Party disavowed any involvement of in the Tea Party political party.
That didn't stop leadership from both the Michigan Republican Party and Common Sense in Government, a major Tea Party group, from claiming this is a Democratic dirty trick. Michigan Republican Party Chair Ron Weiser issued a statement saying in a Hail Mary-style last ditch effort, desperate stooges of the Democrat Party have attempted to confuse Michigan voters by hijacking the name of the Tea Party movement.
Weiser says make no mistake, these tax-and-spend liberal actors are not the real deal. It's up to the Board of State Canvassers to determine if the petition is sufficient. The party must hold its nominating convention no later than the date of the primary on August Third.