Former President Donald Trump can’t catch a break. He’s facing attacks on all fronts.
Now Donald Trump’s been hit with awful news in the form of 128 new felonies.
Sixteen people have been prosecuted by the Michigan Attorney General’s Office for allegedly forging certificates declaring that Trump won the 2020 presidential election.
Each defendant faces eight felony charges, including forgery, conspiracy to commit forgery, and forgery in violation of election law. The maximum term for some of the offenses is 14 years in prison and/or a fine of ten thousand dollars.
Kathleen Berden, William Choate, Amy Marie Facchinello, Clifford Frost Jr., Stanley Grot, John Haggard, Mari-ann McQuater Henry, Timothy King, Michele Goder Lundgren, Meshawn Maddock, James Robbins Renner, Mayra Adela Rodriguez, Rose Rook, Marian Sheridan, Kenneth Thompson, and Kent Vanderwood were all charged on Tuesday by Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel.
The defendants are charged with conspiracy to commit forgery because they allegedly worked together with Rodriguez, Berden, and Maddock to “falsely make, alter, forge, or counterfeit a public record, with the intent to injure or defraud.”
According to the website for the state bar, Rodriguez was the only one of the Trump phony electors to hold a legal license. Maddock was the former co-chairman of the Michigan Republican Party, and Berden is a member of the Republican National Committee for the state of Michigan.
They allegedly met in secret on December 14 at the Michigan Republican Party headquarters and signed multiple certificates claiming to be “duly elected and qualified electors for President and Vice President of the United States of America for the State of Michigan.” This is according to the Attorney General’s Office.
“These false documents were then transmitted to the United States Senate and National Archives in a coordinated effort to award the state’s electoral votes to the candidate of their choosing, in place of the candidates actually elected by the people of Michigan,” the attorney general’s office said in a statement.
According to Nessel, the evidence reveals that the fraudulent electors lacked “legal authority” and that all legitimate challenges to the 2020 election results in Michigan had already been “denied, dismissed, or otherwise rejected” before the fraudulent electors even met.
The attorney general of Michigan stated, “There was no legitimate legal avenue or plausible use of such a document or an alternative slate of electors.” For “these defendants,” who “we have charged with deliberately attempting to interfere with and overturn our free and fair election process” and “the will of millions of Michigan voters,” there was only “a desperate effort.”
The Trump campaign attempted to subvert the Electoral College process and perhaps delay the certification of the 2020 election results by Congress on January 6, 2021, by putting forward slates of “fake electors” in seven swing states, including Michigan.
In the 2020 presidential election, Joe Biden narrowly defeated Donald Trump by a margin of 154,000 votes.
A group of fake electors in Michigan filed a complaint alleging the election was stolen from the previous president and included current and former state GOP officials, a serving mayor, and a member of the school board.
After having submitted the case to the Justice Department at first, Nessel renewed the state’s inquiry in January.
“There will be those who claim these charges are political in nature. But when there is overwhelming evidence of guilt in respect to multiple crimes, the most political act I could engage in as a prosecutor would be to take no action at all,” Nessel declared in documented comments.
Attorney General Schuette of Michigan said her agency will keep looking into the attempts to overturn the 2020 election and that she “has not ruled out potential charges against additional defendants.”
This isn’t exactly news that Donald Trump wants to hear as he faces an incoming indictment and additional charges from Special Counsel Jack Smith over allegations that Trump tried to overturn the election on January 6, 2021.
Whether or not these allegations are true isn’t all there is to it. Trump could survive the charges with a solid defense. He will have the chance to prove his innocence in the courtroom at the end of the day.
But will Trump survive in the Republican primary with these charges hanging over his head? The polls seem to show he can. We’ll see how his support holds up in the coming months as everything plays out.
The DC Daily Journal will keep you updated on any updates about the 16 individuals being charged in Michigan and the potential Trump indictments.