Supporters of President Donald Trump and Republicans in Michigan gathered outside the TCF center in downtown Detroit, criticizing Governor Gretchen Whitmer and the Democrats and accusing them of stealing the election for Democratic candidate Joe Biden.
Now that the Michigan ballot count is complete, Biden Trump leads by a margin of 2.7 percent – that’s about 146,000 votes. Trump led Michigan 2016 by 0.2 percent – or less than 11,000 votes – just ahead of Trump. This victory for the Republicans came after every Demcoratic presidential candidate since 1992 had won the state of the Midwest.
“People are crazy if they think we’re going to sit back calmly and allow them to steal this election,” conservative commentator Brandon Straka, an organizer of the protest, told the crowd on Friday, the Detroit Free Press reported. “The silent majority is not silent. We will not tolerate this. We will stop the theft.”
Videos of the protest showed protesters chanting “Stop the theft,” “Fraud” and “Treason. The protesters also shouted “Lock them up” referring to Whitmer. Trump supporters first began chanting “lock her up” in 2016, referring to this year’s Democratic presidential candidate, Hillary Clinton. Right-wing extremists Michigander revived the slogan in 2020 in the wake of Whitmer’s strict COVID-19 suspension orders, which they felt violated their personal liberties.
Demonstrators carried Trump flags and signs with messages such as “Disobedience to bullies is obedience to God” and “Trump 2020,” reported the Detroit News. Police were on the scene and arrested a man with an outstanding warrant who was driving a vehicle with a trailer carrying flags and signs with messages like “Trump. The vehicle was impounded, police told The News.
Washington Newsday turned to the Michigan GOP, the Michigan Democratic Party and the Trump Campaign to comment on the demonstrations, but they did not respond immediately.
Trump and his supporters claimed, without any reason, that the election results in Michigan, as well as the results on major battlefields around the country, were fabricated. Although Trump seemed to take the lead in Michigan early on, Biden followed suit when Michigan’s millions of absentee votes were counted. Analysts had been saying for months that they expected this to happen because polls showed that Democratic voters were more likely to vote by mail than Republicans.
It would be next to impossible for Democrats to manipulate the election in their favor because they would have to submit tens of thousands of ballots in error-somehow using exact social security numbers, state ID numbers and signatures of Michigan residents without their consent. Any evidence that this was done could easily be discovered by local or county officials.
Trump supporters have also falsely claimed that Republican candidates were not allowed to enter the TCF center to observe the count. In reality, there were more than 200 Republican and more than 200 Democratic challengers in the facility during the count – more than the prescribed 134 allowed.
Congressman Paul Mitchell, a Republican who represents Michigan’s 10th District, appeared to defend himself against false claims by Trump and his supporters in Thursday and Friday’s tweets.
“A legally cast vote doesn’t become ‘illegal’ just because a candidate doesn’t like the vote – remember this is AMERICA,” Mitchell tweeted on Friday.
The day before, the GOP representative posted: “Every legally cast vote should and will be counted – as it always is. Where there are problems, there are ways to solve them. If someone has evidence of wrongdoing, it should be presented and resolved. Anything else damages the integrity of our elections and is dangerous for our democracy”.