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People carrying firearms at the Michigan State Capitol in Lansing, Michigan, on Oct. 17. Photo: Jeff Kowalsky /AFP via Getty Images

Judge Christopher Murray on Tuesday reversed a directive by Michigan Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson that banned the open carry of firearms at or near polling places or absentee counting boards on Election Day.

Why it matters: Benson said the rule was intended to curb the possibility of voter intimidation or harassment on Nov. 3 Meanwhile, the state's Attorney General Dana Nessel argued the necessity for the directive has grown since an alleged plot to kidnap Gov. Gretchen Whitmer was revealed, according to the Detroit News.

What they're saying: Murray wrote that the edict violated the state law that governs how new rules are enacted by going beyond existing legislation about where open carry is banned.

  • "The Legislature has said: Here are the places you cannot carry a weapon," Murray said at the hearing, according to the Detroit News. "The secretary has expanded that. And so how is that in accordance with state law?"
  • "The directive itself covers a substantive policy area — where a resident can openly carry a firearm — and applies to every resident of this state," suggesting that law enforcement is expected to enforce it, Murray wrote. 

The other side: "As the state's Chief Election Officer I have a sworn duty to protect every voter and their right to cast their ballot free from intimidation and harassment, Benson said, according to CNN. "I will continue to protect that right in Michigan, and we will be appealing this ruling."

What to watch: Nessel responded to Tuesday's decision that her office would appeal "as this issue is of significant public interest and importance to our election process," the Detroit News reports.

Go deeper

GOP Rep. Fred Upton on Trump's push against Michigan election results: "It's over"

Rep. Fred Upton (R-Mich.) told CNN's "Inside Politics" on Sunday that "the voters have spoken” in Michigan, and that it's time to move on from the election after no evidence of mass voter fraud has been found in his home state.

Why it matters: President Trump reached out directly to Republican leaders last week in Michigan as part of a long-shot effort to prevent the state from certifying President-elect Joe Biden’s victory, the New York Times reports.

Miriam Kramer, author of Space
7 hours ago - Science

China makes history with successful Mars landing

A model of the Tianwen-1 Mars rover is displayed during an exhibition at the National Museum of China in Beijing. Photo: Wang Zhao/AFP via Getty Images

A Chinese lander carrying a rover successfully touched down on Mars for the first time, state media reports.

Why it matters: This is the first time China has landed a spacecraft on another planet, and it launches the nation into an elite club of only a few space agencies to successfully make it to the Martian surface.

8 hours ago - World

UN: 10,000 Palestinians displaced in Gaza as Israel-Hamas fighting escalates

A Palestinian woman walks after she collects her belongings inside her damaged house following an Israeli air in the northern Gaza Strip. Photo: Ahmed Zakot/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images)

The United Nations warned Friday that ongoing fighting between Israel and Hamas "has the potential to unleash an uncontainable security and humanitarian crisis," in not only the occupied Palestinian territories and Israel, but "the region as a whole."

The big picture: More than 125 Palestinians, including 31 children have been killed in Gaza since fighting began Monday, per the Palestinian Ministry of Health. Eight people, including two children, have been killed in Israel, Reuters reported, citing Israeli authorities.