LANSING — A day after both Republican state Rep. Steve Carra introduced a bill to conduct a partisan and unnecessary review of Michigan’s 2020 general election ballots and Cheboygan County requested a recount of its results (despite Trump winning the county 2-1), the Senate Oversight Committee threw fresh cold water on the widely-held notion that Trump did not legitimately lose his election, stating that there was “no evidence of widespread or systematic fraud.”

As a reminder, “the most comprehensive election audit” in Michigan history was already conducted statewide months ago and also uncovered “no widespread voter fraud.”

The committee’s extensive findings, which centered on election results stemming from Antrim County, refer to the Big Lie as “a nationwide conspiracy to steal the election” in which its supporters “place all other statements and actions they make in a position of zero credibility.” 

As with the previous statewide audit, this morning’s report reinforced the complete lack of “significant acts of fraud” in 2020, thoroughly dismissing claims of ballot manipulation as “indefensible.”

Additionally, Oversight Committee Chair Sen. Ed McBroom (R-Vulcan) argued that the real fraudulent activity lies with those that are knowingly perpetuating the Big Lie to raise money, their profile, or both: “If you are profiting by making false claims, that’s pretty much the definition of fraud.” We’ll see how that indictment lands among his fellow Republicans.

Echoing this, the 55-page report requests that the Attorney General’s office “consider investigating those who have been utilizing misleading and false information about Antrim County to raise money or publicity for their own ends.”

Though the report doesn’t name names, former state Sen. Patrick Colbeck should come to mind as he continues to “knowingly [sow] discord” surrounding 2020, baselessly maintaining that Dominion Voting Systems abetted widespread election fraud. He’s raised “over $1 million” from donors in his pursuit of the Big Lie.

Governor Whitmer reacted to the report Wednesday morning: “The fact that anyone could author this report and still move forward with changes that aren’t substantiated or aren’t necessary is kind of mind boggling to tell you the truth.”

“Don’t expect any applause from us on ‘uncovering’ the obvious for the nth time. This endless pursuit of sham audits, committees, and reports stopped being legitimate fact-finding actions months ago,” said MDP Chair Lavora Barnes. “Irresponsible legislators know the findings will never change, but remain fixated on the Big Lie to justify stripping Michiganders of their ability to freely participate in democracy. Unlike Governor Whitmer, Republicans continue to display that they lack both the leadership and accountability to focus on the issues working families care about as we exit this pandemic and reopen our economy.”

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