Here are the facts.
The 16 Michigan Republicans who attempted to secure Trump’s election victory in the state by submitting false certificates purporting to be the state’s presidential electors may face federal charges.
Speaking on MSNBC’s The Rachel Maddow Show, Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel revealed that her office had been contemplating filing charges for the past year but resolved to refer the issue to the U.S. attorney’s office in Western Michigan.
The U.S. attorney’s office would need to investigate the December 2020 events in which Republican state lawmakers tried to enter the State Capitol with former President Trump’s Electoral College candidates while Michigan electors were casting votes for Biden. Although state police refused the group entry, the false certificates claimed they met “in the State Capitol.”
The group then sent these fraudulent certificates to Jocelyn Benson, Michigan Secretary of State, the U.S. Senate, and Western Michigan’s federal court.
Speaking on the matter on Thursday, January 13, Nessel told Maddow that “under state law… you have forgery of a public record, which is a 14-year offense, and election law forgery, which is a five-year offense.”
However, she continued by saying that the DOJ should investigate the group –– which included prominent GOP members, like Meshawn Maddock, Michigan’s co-chair –– given the Justice Department would be better suited to investigate and possibly prosecute the group.
Nessel would also share her views that the Republicans’ attempt was a “coordinated effort” to promote so-called alternate slates of electors in battleground states.
“This is part of a much bigger conspiracy,” Nessel stressed.
The weeks following the 2020 presidential election ––which former President Trump claimed was “stolen” and “rigged” –– saw many legal challenges by the former President and his allies get rejected in six battleground states. At the time, William Barr, former Attorney General, said the DOJ hadn’t seen fraud on a scale that would change the outcome of the election.