Tom Barrett

Senate Elections Committee passes voter restriction bills 

BY: - June 2, 2021

The Michigan Senate Elections Committee voted on three bills Wednesday that could reform voting procedures to mandate photo identification being presented when applying for an absentee ballot or casting a ballot.  All bills passed 3-1 and moved on to the full Senate. SB 285, introduced by state Sen. Lana Theis (R-Brighton) requires voters to present […]

GOP-led Legislature OKs bills banning mask mandate for kids, limiting Whitmer’s powers

BY: - May 13, 2021

During Thursday’s sessions in the House and Senate, Republicans moved the remaining bills for the Fiscal Year 2022 budget, while also passing bills prohibiting mask mandates for children, banning vaccine passports and limiting the powers of the State Administrative Board.  This week, both GOP-led chambers have been working to pass their own budget plans for […]

Senate adopts bigger $2.3B COVID plan laced with ‘political poison pill’ for Whitmer

BY: and - March 2, 2021

The Michigan Senate passed on Tuesday a new $2.3 billion supplemental funding bill for COVID-19 relief that also contains what Democrats referred to as a “political poison pill.” Last week, the Senate passed a smaller $727 million plan, Senate Bill 114. In December, Congress passed another $5.6 billion in COVID relief that has not been […]

Sheffield: GOP state lawmakers say, ‘Let them die’ when it comes Blacks and coronavirus  

BY: - March 2, 2021

After the GOP-led Michigan Senate voted along party lines Thursday to adopt a measure to prohibit state government from using race and socio-economic factors while distributing COVID-19 vaccines, two African-American leaders who battled coronavirus are firing back. State Sen. Jim Runestad (R-White Lake) last week falsely claimed that 20-year-olds in perfect health who “don’t speak […]

Disability advocates condemn GOP senator protesting deaf Detroiters’ eligibility for COVID vaccines

BY: - March 1, 2021

Updated, 1:48 p.m., 3/2/21, with comment from Lt. Gov. Gilchrist During an especially testy session Thursday in the Michigan Senate — which eventually ended with the passage of a controversial $727 million supplemental funding bill including conservative amendments — GOP lawmakers used their floor speeches to criticize the state’s vaccine distribution that prioritizes vulnerable populations […]

Senate passes small COVID relief plan, Dem calls it ‘callous cruelty fueled by elitism and racism’ 

BY: - February 25, 2021

After fierce partisan debate on the floor, the GOP-led Michigan Senate voted along party lines Thursday to adopt a $727 million supplemental funding bill packed with controversial Republican amendments. Those amendments to Senate Bill 114 include a measure to prohibit Michigan from acknowledging race and socio-economic factors while distributing COVID-19 vaccines, and a Right to […]

A GOP senator told a heart-wrenching story about a hometown bar hurt by COVID-19 orders. But almost none of it was true.

BY: - January 5, 2021

A floor speech from state Sen. Tom Barrett (R-Charlotte) last month alleged that Michigan Liquor Control Commission (LCC) inspectors preyed on the “human compassion” of the owners of Charlie’s Bar and Grill in Potterville by suspending its liquor license for operating despite a state-ordered shutdown during the pandemic. Barrett’s video has gone viral in conservative […]

New: Appeals Court dismisses lawsuit to stop anti-Whitmer petition, appeal planned

BY: - August 19, 2020

A lawsuit challenging the Board of State Canvassers’ approval of a right-wing ballot petition drive was dismissed Monday by the Michigan Court of Appeals. The “Keep Michigan Safe” committee, headed by former Republican state Sen. and U.S. Rep. Joe Schwarz, with legal counsel from attorney and former Michigan Democratic Party chair Mark Brewer, had filed […]

Senate plans for rare Saturday session after COVID scare

BY: - August 11, 2020

The Michigan Senate will meet for an unusual 10 a.m. Saturday morning session this week, the Advance has confirmed. The rare weekend meeting follows the cancellation of sessions and committee hearings for both chambers after state Sen. Tom Barrett (R-Potterville) tested positive for COVID-19 on Aug. 2. The state House is scheduled to meet for […]

Doctors’ group says GOP lawmaker contracting COVID-19 is a wake-up call to wear masks in the Capitol

BY: - August 7, 2020

State Sen. Tom Barrett (R-Potterville), one of most vocal Republicans to rally against Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s orders to contain COVID-19, became on Sunday Michigan’s first GOP lawmaker to test positive for the disease. “Of course we must take appropriate precautions to stay safe,” said Barrett on April 9 after Whitmer extended her stay-home order when […]

Session canceled after lawmaker contracts COVID-19

BY: - August 3, 2020

Following the announcement of state Sen. Tom Barrett (R-Potterville) Sunday that he has tested positive for COVID-19, GOP legislative leadership announced that session in both chambers will be canceled for the rest of the week. The House and Senate did not extend the same protocol when state Rep. Isaac Robinson (D-Detroit) died from a suspected […]

Michigan GOP senator tests positive for COVID-19

BY: - August 2, 2020

State Sen. Tom Barrett (R-Potterville) announced Sunday that he has tested positive for COVID-19. Barrett said that he tested positive during a health screening on Friday issued by the Michigan Army National Guard, which has implemented a COVID-19 screening policy for all soldiers one week prior to their departure for training events. He said he found […]