Laina G. Stebbins

Laina G. Stebbins

Laina G. Stebbins covers the environment, Native issues and criminal justice for the Advance. A lifelong Michigander, she is a graduate of Michigan State University’s School of Journalism, where she served as Founding Editor of The Tab Michigan State and as a reporter for the Capital News Service. When Laina is not writing or spending time with her cats, she loves art and design, listening to music, playing piano, enjoying good food and being out in nature (especially Up North).

Meet the Michigan clerk who breaks down election law to candidates in viral Twitter threads​​

By: - September 15, 2022

This story is part of a project called Democracy Day, in which newsrooms across the country are shining a light on threats to democracy. Barb Byrum wears a lot of hats: county clerk, hardware store owner and lawyer. In her free time, she also schools misled and conspiratorial political figures in Michigan with zingy, informative […]

What’s going on with the MSU president and the Board of Trustees?

By: - September 14, 2022

Michigan State University President Samuel Stanley Jr. broke his silence Tuesday night amid continued speculation and controversy about the fate of his tenure, but many more questions than answers still remain. Along with MSU Provost Teresa Woodruff, Stanley addressed the MSU Faculty Senate during a special virtual meeting Tuesday evening. Both leaders are embroiled in […]

Mich., Minn. water protectors show up in force at public comment for Line 5 tunnel project

By: - September 14, 2022

From early afternoon Thursday until the late evening, representatives of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) Detroit District sat and listened in a Saint Ignace event space while Indigenous water protectors, environmentalists, Enbridge supporters and concerned citizens argued for and against the Canadian pipeline company’s proposed Line 5 replacement project. USACE’s public comment period […]

Updated: Chief Justice McCormack to resign from Michigan Supreme Court

By: - September 12, 2022

Updated, 4:35 p.m., 9/13/22 with McCormack’s new job Michigan Supreme Court Chief Justice Bridget McCormack intends to retire later this year, the Democratic-nominated justice announced in a letter to Gov. Gretchen Whitmer on Monday. McCormack is roughly two years into an eight-year term. She first won election in 2012, was sworn in as an associate […]

Dixon appears to make the case that voters can support her and abortion rights ballot measure in Nov.

By: - September 9, 2022

Updated, 6:16 p.m. with comments from Right to Life of Michigan PAC In a Thursday night tweet following the Michigan Supreme Court ruling that voters will be able to decide a measure guaranteeing abortion rights, GOP gubernatorial nominee Tudor Dixon appeared to encourage Michiganders to vote for both Proposal 3 and her in November — […]

Judge rules for tribe in Line 5 suit, says Enbridge is trespassing and must pay damages

By: - September 9, 2022

Short of an order to decommission the Line 5 pipeline, an Ojibwe tribe on the south shore of Lake Superior secured a different legal victory Thursday in its federal lawsuit against Canadian pipeline company Enbridge. The Bad River Band of the Lake Superior Tribe of Chippewa Indians has been locked in a legal battle with […]

Voting rights measure should be on Nov. ballot, Michigan Supreme Court rules

By: - September 8, 2022

After a week of uncertainty for the fate of two major ballot measures, the Michigan Supreme Court on Thursday evening ruled that a constitutional amendment expanding voting rights will appear on the Nov. 8 ballot for Michiganders to decide. Promote the Vote 2022 (PTV) had gathered more than 664,000 signatures in July — over 200,000 […]

Muskegon Co. prosecutor appointed to investigate DePerno, others in voting machine probe

By: - September 8, 2022

The special prosecutor sought by Attorney General Dana Nessel to handle an investigation into her GOP challenger will be Democrat D.J. Hilson, the prosecuting attorney in Muskegon County. Hilson was first elected to office in 2012. He will now oversee an investigation into whether nine people, including Republican Attorney General nominee Matthew DePerno, should be […]

Michigan Supreme Court strikes down challenge to term limits ballot measure

By: - September 7, 2022

An attempt to have the Michigan Supreme Court either reject a constitutional amendment or have petitioners break it up into two ballot measures before Michigan voters in November has failed. The Michigan Legislative Term Limits and Financial Disclosure Amendment (Proposal 1) will now likely be on the ballot as written. It seeks to reduce the […]

Term limits proposal opponents ask Michigan Supreme Court to toss it from ballot

By: - September 6, 2022

All three constitutional amendments whose supporters hope will be on the Nov. 8 ballot are now awaiting sink-or-swim rulings in the Michigan Supreme Court. Michigan Legislative Term Limits and Financial Disclosure Amendment (Proposal 1) would reduce the state’s current system of term limits to a total of 12 years, while also allowing for six, two-year […]

Candidates, mostly Republican, skip debates, bar press during midterm campaigns

By: and - September 6, 2022

WASHINGTON — With two months left of the 2022 campaign season, a majority of Republican candidates are continuing to skirt away from not only talking to local and national media outlets about their policy issues, but their own constituents, leaving voters with little information on their policy positions. “If we are to hold our elected […]

Abortion rights coalition files suit in Michigan Supreme Court to put question on Nov. ballot

By: - September 2, 2022

On Thursday afternoon, one of the two constitutional amendment proposals rejected by the Board of State Canvassers took to the courts as Promote the Vote 2022 challenged the matter before the Michigan Supreme Court. The second proposal, Reproductive Freedom for All (RFFA), later followed suit. “This case presents a straightforward issue for this Court to […]