Defendants in Michigan False Elector Case Seek Dismissal Citing Attorney General’s Remarks

by Sophia Chen
Michigan fraudulent elector case

A subsequent individual implicated in a fraudulent elector case in Michigan is requesting that criminal charges be dismissed. This follows comments made by Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel, who indicated that the 16 Republicans involved genuinely thought that former President Donald Trump had won the 2020 presidential election.

The 16 Republican defendants are charged with eight criminal offenses, such as forgery and conspiracy to commit election forgery. Authorities assert that after the 2020 election, the group convened and signed a document inaccurately declaring themselves as Michigan’s “officially elected and qualified electors.”

President Joe Biden secured Michigan’s electoral votes by a margin of nearly 155,000 votes, a result corroborated by a 2021 investigation led by the state’s GOP-controlled Senate.

Two of the accused are now petitioning for the dismissal of charges based on statements made by Attorney General Nessel at a virtual event on September 18. Nessel, a Democrat, had stated that these false electors were “brainwashed” and truly believed that Trump was the victor in Michigan.

Nessel also mentioned that Ingham County, the location for the legal hearings and jury selection, leans strongly Democratic.

Kevin Kijewski, legal counsel for defendant Clifford Frost, filed a motion for dismissal on Tuesday, asserting that Nessel’s remarks constitute an “unambiguous and direct admission” that the defendants lacked the intent to defraud. Kijewski indicated that he anticipates this motion to be considered during a court hearing already scheduled for October 6.

Mari-Ann Henry’s attorney also submitted a motion to dismiss on Tuesday, arguing that the Attorney General’s comments effectively undermine the government’s entire case against the defendants.

Danny Wimmer, a spokesperson for the Attorney General’s office, indicated that the office will formally reply to the motion through court filings.

John Freeman, a former federal prosecutor currently representing defendant Marian Sheridan, expressed astonishment at Nessel’s comments, describing them as “a boon for my client.” Freeman is still assessing whether or not to file a dismissal motion on this basis.

Tom Leonard, a former assistant attorney general of Michigan and the Republican nominee for the position in 2018, emphasized that the crux of the case revolves around the defendants’ intent. Leonard said, “The issue at hand is not whether the action occurred, but rather what the defendants intended when they affixed their signatures to those documents.”

All 16 accused have entered not guilty pleas. Henry, along with several other defendants including the former Michigan GOP co-chair Meshawn Maddock, is scheduled for a preliminary hearing on October 12.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about Michigan fraudulent elector case

What is the primary issue at hand in the Michigan fraudulent elector case?

The primary issue involves 16 Republican defendants facing eight criminal charges, including forgery and conspiracy to commit election forgery. They are accused of convening after the 2020 presidential election and signing a document that falsely declared them to be Michigan’s “officially elected and qualified electors.”

Who are the key individuals involved in the case?

The key individuals include the 16 Republican defendants, Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel, and legal counsels for the defendants such as Kevin Kijewski and John Freeman. President Joe Biden and former President Donald Trump are indirectly relevant as the electoral outcome in Michigan is central to the case.

Why are the defendants seeking to have the charges dismissed?

The defendants are seeking dismissal of the charges following comments made by Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel. Nessel stated that the false electors genuinely believed that Donald Trump had won the 2020 election, and her comments are being interpreted as an admission that there was no intent to defraud.

What is the significance of Attorney General Dana Nessel’s comments?

Nessel’s comments have been cited as “unambiguous and direct admission” that the defendants lacked fraudulent intent, according to Kevin Kijewski, one of the defense attorneys. This has led to motions being filed for the dismissal of the charges against the accused individuals.

What is the legal argument centering on the issue of “intent”?

The issue of “intent” is crucial as the defendants are charged with forgery and conspiracy to commit election forgery. For these charges to be valid, there usually has to be a proven intent to defraud. Comments by Nessel have called this element into question, thereby potentially undermining the prosecution’s case.

What is the role of Ingham County in the case?

Ingham County is where the legal hearings and jury selection will take place. Attorney General Nessel mentioned that this county leans strongly Democratic, which could be a factor considered in the proceedings.

What is the current status of the defendants?

All 16 defendants have pleaded not guilty. A preliminary examination hearing for some of the accused, including Mari-Ann Henry and former Michigan GOP co-chair Meshawn Maddock, is scheduled for October 12.

What are the next steps in the legal proceedings?

The next steps include considering the motions for dismissal filed by the defendants’ legal teams. These motions are expected to be discussed in a court hearing already scheduled for October 6. A preliminary examination hearing is also slated for October 12.

More about Michigan fraudulent elector case

  • Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel’s Comments on the Case
  • 2020 Election Results in Michigan
  • Legal Requirements for Forgery and Conspiracy to Commit Election Forgery
  • Overview of Ingham County’s Political Leanings
  • Previous Cases Involving Intent to Defraud in Election-Related Offenses

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FinanceGuru September 28, 2023 - 3:47 am

Intent is everything in legal matters, especially crimes like forgery. If Nessel basically admitted there was no intent to defraud, that’s a game changer.

PoliticalWatcher September 28, 2023 - 5:56 am

Nessel’s comment about Ingham County being Democratic-leaning is also intriguing. Jury selection will be something to keep an eye on.

JohnDoe101 September 29, 2023 - 1:14 am

Woah, this case is really heating up, huh? If Nessel’s comments were taken out of context, that’s one thing. But if not, she might’ve just undermined her own case.

CryptoQueen September 29, 2023 - 1:22 am

So if the AG says they believed they were doing the right thing, why are they being prosecuted? Makes you wonder.

CarEnthusiast September 29, 2023 - 2:55 am

not into politics but this stuff is like watching a movie. Cant believe the twists n turns this case is taking.


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