Michigan Chamber of Commerce Releases Study On Michigan Supreme Court Decisions

New study of Michigan's highest court uncovers inaccuracies in recent campaign advertisements

PRNewswire
LANSING, Mich.
Sep 21, 2000

Today, the Michigan Chamber of Commerce released a new study which impartially and accurately examines the Michigan Supreme Court decisions published during the 1999 - 2000 term. The Michigan Chamber's study was prompted, in part, by the recent controversies in the press regarding the Supreme Court's work product.

(Photo: http://www.newscom.com/cgi-bin/prnh/20000320/DEM039 )

The study analyzes 86 published cases of the Michigan Supreme Court's current term, identifies the subject area of the cases, the holding of the court and the prevailing party. The study also notes how each of the seven Supreme Court justices voted. The study does not suggest that the opinions of the judges are correct or incorrect, it merely states the various outcomes.

Based on a thorough examination of the cases, the Michigan Chamber's study found that, of the 86 opinions reached by the Michigan Supreme Court, 47 were unanimous. Furthermore, the study found that in an additional 11 cases, Justices Kelly and Cavanagh, either individually or together, joined in voting with Justices Weaver, Corrigan, Markman, Taylor and Young. Therefore, the study concludes that 69 percent of the Supreme Court's published opinions from this term were concurred in by either or both of the Democrat-nominated justices, reflecting a court which is more often in agreement than not.

The study also found that the largest divergence of opinion among the justices were in cases that involved criminal law. In 48 percent of the criminal law cases, either Justices Kelly and Cavanagh or both, dissented from the majority and would have found for the criminal defendant.

"The Michigan Chamber believes that citizens in the state of Michigan have the right to receive reliable and straightforward information about their Supreme Court, and we are pleased to provide this information for them," said Jim Barrett, President & CEO of the Michigan Chamber. "The unfiltered data found in this study will improve the quality of public debate on issues surrounding the court."

The Michigan Chamber recognized the need for the study after the Michigan Democratic Party released inaccurate and incomplete analyses of the court to media outlets throughout the state. According to Bob LaBrant, Senior Vice President of Political Affairs and General Counsel for the Michigan Chamber, "the analysis authored by the Michigan Democratic Party's General Counsel and circulated by its Chairman have numerous flaws and distortions. Our study is a complete record of dependable information that will enable the public to check the credibility of the misleading claims spread by the Democratic Party."

"This study bears out what many of us in the law enforcement community have long believed: that the current Supreme Court is on the side of law and order," said Oakland County Prosecutor David Gorcyca. "This is why I am pleased the Michigan Chamber has released this study to help educate the public and the media."

Copies of the study can be obtained by calling the Michigan Chamber at 517-371-2100. The study can also be downloaded from the Michigan Chamber's website at http://www.michamber.com/ .

The Michigan Chamber of Commerce is a statewide business organization representing approximately 7,000 employers, trade associations and local chambers of commerce. The Michigan Chamber of Commerce was established in 1959 to be an advocate for Michigan's job providers in the legislative, political and legal process.

NewsCom: http://www.newscom.com/cgi-bin/prnh/20000320/DEM039

PRN Photo Desk, 888-776-6555 or 201-369-3467

SOURCE: Michigan Chamber of Commerce

Contact: Bob LaBrant of Michigan Chamber of Commerce, 517-371-7653

Website: http://www.michamber.com/


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