NATIONAL NEWS

Fake Michigan Certificate of Votes mailed to U.S. Senate after 2020 presidential vote, official says

Feb 13, 2024, 10:04 AM

A fake Certificate of Votes was submitted to the U.S. Senate following Michigan’s 2020 presidential election, an official testified Tuesday during a preliminary hearing for six people facing forgery and other charges for allegedly serving as false electors.

But that “purported” Certificate of Votes didn’t match an official document signed by Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer and featuring the Michigan state seal, said Dan Schwager, who served in 2020-2021 as general counsel to the secretary of the Senate.

“We could tell it was not an authorized Certificate of Votes. It was a fake,” Schwager testified in Lansing District Court.

Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel has charged 15 Republicans in the case. Investigators have said the group signed a document during a meeting at the Michigan Republican headquarters on Dec. 14, 2020, falsely stating they were the state’s “duly elected and qualified electors.”

The defendants have insisted that their actions were not illegal, even though Joe Biden won Michigan by nearly 155,000 votes over then-President Donald Trump, a result confirmed by a GOP-led state Senate investigation in 2021.

Fake electors in Michigan and six other battleground states sent certificates to Congress falsely declaring Trump the winner of the 2020 presidential election in their state, despite confirmed results showing he had lost. Michigan, Georgia and Nevada have charged fake electors. Republicans who served as false electors in Wisconsin agreed to a legal settlement in which they conceded that Biden won the election and that their efforts were part of an attempt to improperly overturn the 2020 results.

Schwager said Tuesday the false Michigan document arrived Jan. 5, 2021, to the U.S. Senate’s mail services and that he reviewed it a few days later.

“The Michigan one came in a little bit late and so it was added to the collection of the other fake certificates,” he said.

Schwager also said it was “not uncommon to get one or two often really wacky submissions from people claiming to be electors that are way out there.”

“I think we get maybe one or two or three every four or eight years, or something,” he added.

Miriam Vincent, acting director of Legal Affairs and Policy for the Office of the Federal Register, testified Tuesday that “materials purported to be Certificate of Votes from non-official sources” were received by her office which is part of the National Archives.

The return address listed the Michigan Republican Party, Vincent said.

In December, former Michigan GOP Communications Director Anthony Zammit testified that he believes an attorney for Trump’s campaign “took advantage” of some of the 15 Republicans.

Preliminary hearings don’t involve a jury and are for the judge to determine if there is sufficient evidence to substantiate the charges.

Six defendants are having their cases heard together. A seventh, Kenneth Thompson, had his case postponed because his attorney didn’t show up. The other eight defendants will have preliminary examinations at later dates.

National News

FILE - A bump stock is displayed in Harrisonburg, Va., on March 15, 2019. The Supreme Court will he...

Associated Press

Supreme Court to hear challenge to bump stock ban in high court’s latest gun case

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Supreme Court on Wednesday will hear a challenge to a Trump-era ban on bump stocks, a gun accessory used in a Las Vegas massacre that was the deadliest mass shooting in modern U.S. history. A Texas gun shop owner argues the Trump administration didn’t follow federal law when it reversed course […]

9 minutes ago

FILE - Hunter Biden, son of President Joe Biden, speaks during a news conference outside the Capito...

Associated Press

Hunter Biden to appear for closed-door interview with Republicans conducting impeachment inquiry

WASHINGTON (AP) — Hunter Biden is set to appear Wednesday on Capitol Hill for a closed-door deposition with lawmakers, a critical moment for Republicans as their impeachment inquiry into his father and their family’s business affairs teeters on the brink of collapse. The deposition will mark a decisive point for the 14-month Republican investigation into […]

11 minutes ago

Associated Press

1 person injured when Hawaii tour helicopter crashes on remote Kauai beach

LIHUE, Hawaii (AP) — One person was injured when a tour helicopter crashed on a remote beach on the Hawaiian island of Kauai, the county fire department said Tuesday. An aircraft operated by Jack Harter Helicopters crashed at Honopu Beach on the Napali Coast, a rugged stretch of Kauai that is only accessible by hiking, […]

1 hour ago

Defendant Hannah Gutierrez-Reed, former armorer on the set of the movie "Rust", walks back to her s...

Associated Press

Expert in Old West firearms says gun wouldn’t malfunction in fatal shooting by Alec Baldwin

SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — Courtroom testimony by an independent gun expert Tuesday cast new doubt on Alec Baldwin’s account that his gun went off without pulling the trigger in the fatal shooting of a cinematographer during a 2021 rehearsal on the set of the Western movie “Rust.” Baldwin has pleaded not guilty to involuntary […]

2 hours ago

Associated Press

Why AP called Michigan for Trump: Race call explained

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Associated Press declared former President Donald Trump the winner of Michigan’s Republican primary based on an analysis of initial vote returns from a cross-section of the state. With the victory, Trump is now a perfect five-for-five in presidential contests in which he appeared on the ballot. The AP declared Trump the […]

3 hours ago

Associated Press

Public health officer in Michigan keeps her job after lengthy legal fight over COVID rules

WEST OLIVE, Mich. (AP) — An embattled public health officer in Michigan will get to keep her job, after a lengthy legal fight with county commissioners over pandemic-era mask mandates concluded Tuesday with the board bowing to the will of a court-ordered arbitrator. The Ottawa County Board of Commissioners voted 11-0 Monday to retain Adeline […]

5 hours ago

Fake Michigan Certificate of Votes mailed to U.S. Senate after 2020 presidential vote, official says