Dozens of armed reality deniers gathered outside Michigan Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson’s home over the weekend, making “threats of violence, intimidation, and bullying” in support of the president’s false claims of election fraud.
Benson released a statement describing the “threatening” scene in front of her house.
“As my four-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.
The secretary said the protesters—who carried signs and chanted “Stop the Steal,” a bogus Trump campaign motto used to cast doubt on the 2020 presidential election results—have “targeted” her because of her role as Michigan’s chief election officer.
Benson said that she is an “energetic advocate” of peaceful protests but added, “However, there is a line crossed when gatherings are done with the primary purpose of intimidation of public officials who are carrying out the oath of office they solemnly took as elected officials.”
HuffPost editor Philip Lewis shared a video of the protesters, who have now caught the eye of Michigan’s attorney general Dana Nessel.
“Dozens of armed individuals” showed up to Michigan Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson’s home last night, shouting “Stop The Steal!” pic.twitter.com/rZhPK5hbsv
— philip lewis (@Phil_Lewis_) December 7, 2020
Nessel’s office released a statement blasting the demonstrators, saying they disturbed a peaceful neighborhood by shouting “baseless conspiracies about the election,” and cited one portion of the video shared on social media where shouts of “You’re murderers!” could be heard.
The attorney general’s statement also called the demonstrator’s behavior “mob-like” and added that activism does not include “terrorizing children and families at their own homes.”
.@MIAttyGen @dananessel and Wayne County Prosecutor @KymLWorthy issued the following joint statement regarding the protest in front of Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson’s home Saturday night: pic.twitter.com/RTTO5F2JEu
— Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel (@MIAttyGen) December 7, 2020
The president has dangerously primed the Michigan MAGA crowd for months now. Trump consistently blasted Gov. Gretchen Whitmer over Covid-19 stay-at-home restrictions, which inspired a foiled plot by Trump-supporting militants to kidnap and “possibly kill” the governor earlier this year.