Politics 'Incredibly disturbing': Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer says Trump incites domestic terrorism
Trump says Whitmer didn't say 'thank you' after thwarted kidnapped plot. She did thank law enforcement
Whitmer thanked law enforcement in her press conference on Thursday but criticized Trump for his responses to hate groups.Seven additional people are also facing state charges pursuant to Michigan's anti-terrorism act in connection to the alleged plot.
LANSING — Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer accused President Donald Trump of inciting domestic terrorism during a national TV appearance Sunday, in her strongest criticism of Trump to date.
"It's incredibly disturbing that the president of the United States, 10 days after a plot to kidnap, put me on trial, and execute me … is at it again … inciting this kind of domestic terrorism," Whitmer said on NBC's "Meet the Press," following a Trump campaign appearance in Michigan Saturday.
"It is dangerous, not just for me and my family, but for public servants everywhere," said Whitmer, calling on opinion leaders everywhere to "call this out" and demand Trump tamp down his remarks.
AG: Michigan governor, family were moved as plotters tracked
LANSING, Mich. (AP) — Gov. Gretchen Whitmer and her family were at times moved around by authorities as law enforcement tracked the men who allegedly plotted for months to kidnap her, Michigan's attorney general said Friday. Dana Nessel disclosed the detail to “CBS This Morning." She said the Democratic governor was consistently updated about the investigation over the past couple months. “She was aware of things that were happening," NesselDana Nessel disclosed the detail to “CBS This Morning." She said the Democratic governor was consistently updated about the investigation over the past couple months.
A Trump campaign spokesman did not immediately respond to an email seeking comment.
On Saturday night, Trump held a campaign rally at an airport near Muskegon, where he again repeated criticism of Whitmer for measures she has taken to address the coronavirus pandemic,and appeared to summarize the alleged plot against Whitmer with the words: "I guess they say she was threatened."
Trump has said Whitmer should be appreciative because federal officials uncovered and foiled the plot. In response to the chant from the crowd, Trump laughed and said: "Lock them all up."
The alleged kidnapping plot against the Michigan governor as told in photos
A photo series showing how the kidnapping plot against Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer unfolded. Tensions between Whitmer, the state's second female governor, and right-wing activists have been playing out publicly, with large protests through the spring and summer as the governor instituted restrictions to combat the spread of the novel coronavirus.
The Biden campaign slammed the episode.
"His conduct reflects his own insecurity and envy of Governor Whitmer’s respected record of leadership in a time of crisis," Biden spokesman Andrew Bates said. "It also serves as a reminder that our nation is at a crossroads."
Federal and state officialswith alleged domestic terror plots that included a plan to kidnap Whitmer from her family's vacation home in northern Michigan. Defendants in the case conducted surveillance of the home on two occasions and discussed abducting her by boat and taking her to Wisconsin to "stand trial" for treason, according to evidence in the case.
Whitmerby using highly charged words to criticize her, by sometimes refusing to condemn right-wing groups, and by giving encouragement and legitimacy to such groups by and by urging Whitmer to meet and negotiate with Capitol demonstrators.
Gov. Whitmer says she has 'always felt safe' but doubles down on charges that extremists are 'finding comfort' in Republican rhetoric
Gov. Gretchen Whitmer, who was the target of a failed kidnapping plot, said she remains "concerned about safety and integrity going into this election."Whitmer was a target of a failed kidnapping plot by at least six men who had ties to the militant "boogaloo" movement that allegedly urged its members to conduct surveillance on the governor's private home.
Sunday's remarks took those earlier comments a step further, by saying Trump actually incites terrorism.
Whitmer, a national co-chair of former vice president Joe Biden's Democratic campaign for president, also said that with coronavirus cases rising nationally and in Michigan, all of the progress Michigan has made against the pandemic is "at risk" due to what she denounced as a "partisan" 4-3 Michigan Supreme Court decision Oct. 2 that struck down as unconstitutional the Emergency Powers of Governor Act of 1945.
That statute was the major legal underpinning for Michigan's state of emergency and Whitmer's emergency orders related to the pandemic after courts ruled earlier Whitmer cannot extend a state of emergency beyond 28 days without approval of the Legislature, which the GOP-controlled House and Senate have refused to provide.
Whitmer said the Supreme Court decision "has created a lot of confusion and has worked to undermine the work we have done here." But she said she is using the Michigan Public Health code and other powers to continue a statewide mask mandate, restrict the size of indoor and outdoor gatherings, and set requirements to ensure workplace safety.
Whitmer blasts Trump's 'appalling' response to her after feds foil kidnapping plot
On the night the plot was announced, Trump said Whitmer "has done a terrible job" and that she should have said thank you for the federal government having foiled the effort."I was shocked to see that response," Whitmer said.
Trump told thousands gathered at his Saturday rally they need to get Whitmer to end Michigan's lockdown. Whitmer lifted Michigan's stay-at-home order June 1, though some restrictions on business and other activities remain in place.
"We haven't had a stay-home order since late spring," Whitmer said Sunday, but Trump "never lets facts get in the way of comments he is making."
She said Trump's response to the pandemic is "the worst in the globe," and that is because he has politicized the crisis, rather than addressing it from a science and health perspective.
"We should have acted as if we are in a war," Whitmer said. "But not a war with one another."
It was Whitmer's third appearance on "Meet the Press," the most influential of the Sunday public affairs programs and the longest-running program in TV history. She earlier appeared on the program in March and April, during the height of the coronavirus pandemic.
This article originally appeared on Detroit Free Press:
How FBI says Michigan gov kidnapping plot went from texts, small gatherings to raid .
14 men are accused of plotting to kidnap Gov. Gretchen Whitmer. The FBI revealed the men’s alleged paramilitary operation earlier this month, which included sinister plots to execute government officials, storm the capitol building with explosives and send bombs codenamed “cupcakes.