LANSING, Mich. (Legal Newsline) - Michigan Attorney General Bill Schuette says he is investigating allegations of possible fraud relating to nominating petitions submitted by U.S. Rep. Thaddeus McCotter.

McCotter, a five-term Republican, has represented residents of Michigan's Oakland and Wayne counties since 2003.

Schuette, also a Republican, said Thursday his office's Criminal Division will look into the allegations related to the petitions filed in McCotter's candidacy for the state's 11th Congressional District.

The attorney general said his decision to investigate came after a formal referral from the Secretary of State's Bureau of Elections.

"We will follow the facts, without fear or favor," Schuette said in a statement.

"It's our duty to maintain the integrity of our election process. We will conduct a thorough and comprehensive investigation. If evidence of criminal violations is uncovered, we will not hesitate to prosecute."

Earlier this month, McCotter submitted nominating petitions to the Secretary of State's Office. A formal review by the Bureau of Elections revealed various discrepancies in the petition filing, including duplicate signatures and the appearance of altered petitions.

McCotter said Thursday he will fully cooperate with Schuette's investigation.

"I thank the Michigan Secretary of State and Attorney General for commencing the criminal investigation of petitions I requested Tuesday: I will assist as they see fit," he said in a statement.

McCotter is currently a member of the House Committee on Financial Services, the Subcommittee on Capital Markets and Government Sponsored Enterprises, the Subcommittee on International Monetary Policy and Trade, and the Subcommittee on Financial Institutions and Consumer Credit.

He was previously a member of the Committee on Foreign Affairs, the Committee on the Budget, the Committee on Small Business and the Joint Economic Committee.

From Legal Newsline: Reach Jessica Karmasek by email at

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