WAYNE COUNTY — A group of protesters appeared outside Michigan Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson’s home on Saturday night to intimidate her and her family about Joe Biden’s win in the Nov. 3 election in the state.
The protesters gathered to shout typical pro-Trump election slogans like “Stop the Steal”, as Benson and her family had finished decorating their house for Christmas. Biden won the state by 154,000 votes. Michigan and most other states have certified their results.
Some openly carried firearms. Outgoing President Trump and his loyalists have espoused conspiracy theories about mass voter frauds in counties he lost nationwide — theories based on no real evidence. Dozens of court cases filed by the campaign have been thrown out for lack of credible evidence, including one on Monday in Michigan by U.S. District Judge Linda Parker in Detroit.
“As my 4-year-old son and I were finishing up decorating the house for Christmas on Saturday night, and he was about to sit down to watch ‘How the Grinch Stole Christmas’, dozens of armed individuals stood outside my home shouting obscenities and chanting into bullhorns in the dark of night,” Benson said in a statement.
“The actions of these latest protesters are an extension of the noise and clouded efforts to spread false information about the security and accuracy of our elections that we’ve all endured in the month since the polls closed on November 3.
“Through blatantly false press releases, purely political legislative hearings, bogus legal claims and so called ‘affidavits’ that fail to allege any clear or cogent evidence of wrongdoing, those unhappy with the results of this election have perpetuated an unprecedented, dangerous, egregious campaign to erode the public’s confidence in the results of one of the most secure, accessible and transparent elections in our state’s history.”
The actions of these latest protesters are an extension of the noise and clouded efforts to spread false information about the security and accuracy of our elections — Jocelyn Benson
On Sunday, Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel and Wayne County Prosecutor Kym Worthy released the following statement regarding the protest outside Benson’s home:
“Last night, several individuals converged on the private residence of Secretary of State Benson, disturbing a peaceful neighborhood by taunting and intimidating her family and neighbors. They shouted baseless conspiracy theories about the election, and in videos uploaded to social media, at least one individual could be heard shouting ‘you’re murderers’ within earshot of her child’s bedroom. This mob-like behavior is an affront to basic morality and decency. In a civil society, there are many ways to peaceably assemble and demonstrate. Anyone can air legitimate grievances to Secretary Benson’s office through civil and democratic means, but terrorizing children and families at their own homes is not activism. This disturbing behavior masquerading as protest should be called out for what it is and roundly condemned by citizens and public officials alike.”
The protesters eventually departed.
Trump has emboldened calls for “revenge” for what he has claimed was a completely rigged nationwide election. In Georgia, where a recount failed to overturn Biden’s victory, Trump supporters took to threatening officials, including making sexual threats against Republican Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger’s wife, and sending an image of a noose sent to a young Dominion Voting Systems contractor.
That sparked Georgia’s voting systems manager and longtime Republican Gabriel Sterling to rebuke Trump’s actions.
“Mr. President, it looks like a likely loss in the state of Georgia,” he said in a fiery statement. “We’re investigating. There’s always a possibility. I get it. You have the rights to go through the court. What you don’t have the ability to do — and you need to step up and say this — is stop inspiring people to commit potential violence. Someone’s going to get hurt. Someone’s going to get shot. Someone’s going to get killed. It’s not right.”