Michigan Expands Investigation into Voting System Breaches by Trump Supporters [REPORT]

Dominion Voting System
Image source: Dominion Voting website

Michigan is expanding its investigation into former President Donald Trump’s supporters who tried to gain or gained unauthorized access to the state’s voting systems.

According to a report by Reuters, over the past six weeks, the Michigan State Police obtained warrants to confiscate voting equipment and election records in several towns and counties.

Michigan launched its investigation in mid-February after Republican officials and pro-Trump activists breached the local voting systems in the state. Their intention was to prove the former president’s debunked claims of widespread fraud in the 2020 presidential election.

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As part of its investigation, state officials seized voting machines, poll books, phone records, and data storage devices, according to Reuters based on the search warrants, and investigators’ memos.

The search warrants authorized the state police to seize and investigate potential breaches or attempts of unauthorized access to the voting machines in Lake Township in Missaukee County, Irving Township in Barry County, and Richfield Township in Roscommon County.

In Roscommon County, an official in Richfield Township told investigators that in early 2021, he handed over two vote-counting tabulators to an unauthorized and unidentified “third party” who kept the machines for several weeks. The country’s clerk also admitted to giving election equipment to unauthorized individuals.

In Michigan, there were 11 incidents in which Trump supporters breached or attempted to breach voting equipment. Nationwide, at least 17 incidents of voting machine breaches by Trump allies have been reported.

Trump supporters were inspired to breach voting equipment partly due to false claims that the state-ordered voting-system maintenance or upgrades would erase evidence of the alleged election fraud in 2020.

State officials including in Michigan asserted that systems maintenance or upgrades do not affect the data stored from past elections.

In an interview, Michigan Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson told Reuters that they are investigating if there was a coordinated effort to breach the state’s election system.

Benson said,  “If there is coordination, whether it’s among those in our state or reaching up to a national level, we can determine that, and then we can seek accountability for all involved.”

In February, Benson asked Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel to launch a criminal investigation into the unauthorized access to voting machines and data.

In January, AG Nessel asked federal prosecutors to investigate an inaccurate certificate indicating that Trump won the electoral votes in Michigan in the 2020 presidential election. Sixteen Republicans signed the false certificate.

In an interview with MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow, Nessel stated, “We think this is a matter that is best investigated and potentially prosecuted by the feds. And as such, just today, we referred this matter to the western district, the U.S. attorney’s office, for them to evaluate it.”

“So I will say under state law, I think clearly you have forgery of a public record, which is a 14-year offense, and election law forgery, which is a five-year offense,” added the Michigan State AG.