The Michigan 16: Guardians of Electoral Integrity

Explore the audacious actions of the Michigan 16, a group of alternate electors who challenged the 2020 election results. Their story serves as a stark reminder of the complexities of the American electoral system and raises questions about the integrity of our democracy.

October 31, 2023

In the wake of the 2020 U.S. Presidential Election, a group of 16 individuals, known as the "Michigan 16," took a daring step that sent shockwaves through the political arena. Forget the sanitized narrative of a smooth electoral process; these individuals, all Republicans, cast alternate electoral votes for Donald Trump, challenging the certified results that declared Joe Biden the winner in Michigan. A brazen act? Perhaps. But let's peel back the layers of this complex tale.

The Electoral College, a cornerstone of American democracy, is often misunderstood. Citizens don't directly vote for the President; they vote for electors pledged to their candidate of choice. These electors then convene to cast the official votes. Simple, right? But what happens when the system is thrown into chaos, as it was in Michigan?

On December 14, 2020, the Michigan 16 gathered and cast their votes for Trump and Pence, despite Michigan's certified results favoring Biden. They even signed certificates claiming they were the "duly elected and qualified electors." Some even tried to enter the state capitol to deliver their votes. A rogue act or a calculated move?

Let's not confuse the Michigan 16 with "faithless electors," who go against their state's popular vote due to personal convictions. The Michigan 16 were "alternate electors," ready to step in if legal challenges altered the election's course. They were a safeguard, a contingency plan.

Now, why would they do this? The answer lies in the unholy alliance between corporate media and politicians, both hell-bent on suppressing the rise of populism, epitomized by Donald Trump. In this narrative, the Michigan 16 were labeled "fake" electors. But "fake" is a loaded term, a smear tactic to delegitimize these citizens who dared to question the system.

And let's not forget the glaring inconsistencies in our justice system. The Michigan 16 face legal scrutiny for merely signing a piece of paper, while the infamous "Russiagate" scandal, a dubious attempt to sabotage an election, remains largely unaddressed. Curious, isn't it?

But this isn't the first time we've seen alternate electors. Cast your mind back to the 1960 election between John F. Kennedy and Richard Nixon. Hawaii had two sets of electors due to a close vote and a subsequent recount. Congress eventually counted the Democratic electors' votes, aligning with the recount. A historical echo, reminding us that the Michigan 16 are not an anomaly but part of a complex electoral history.

The Michigan 16 were prepared for any twist in the election saga, right up to the inauguration. They were not rebels without a cause but individuals ready to act if the situation demanded it. Their actions serve as a stark reminder of the complexities and vulnerabilities of our electoral system.

As we conclude this initial exploration, it's clear that the Michigan 16's audacious act has far-reaching implications for American democracy. Their story is a cautionary tale, a lesson in the intricacies and potential pitfalls of a system we often take for granted. And this is just the tip of the iceberg; there's more to come, diving deeper into the legal battles, media narratives, and societal implications of this critical moment in American history.

Now, let's meet the Michigan 16, the individuals who dared to challenge the system:

  • Meshawn Maddock, 55: A former co-chair of the Michigan Republican Party.
  • Kathy Berden, 70: A Republican National Committee member from Michigan.
  • Marian Sheridan, 69: The grassroots vice chairwoman of the Michigan Republican Party.
  • Kent Vanderwood, 69: The current mayor of Wyoming, Michigan.
  • Stanley Grot, 71: The Shelby Township clerk.
  • Amy Facchinello, 55: A school board member in Grand Blanc.
  • Mari-Ann Henry, 65: The treasurer of the 7th Congressional District Republican Committee.
  • Michele Lundgren, 73: The Republican nominee for a Detroit-based seat in the Michigan House.
  • Clifford Frost, 75: A realtor and GOP poll-watcher in Detroit.
  • John Haggard, 82: A plaintiff in a lawsuit challenging Michigan's 2020 results.
  • Timothy King, 56: Another plaintiff in the same lawsuit.
  • Rose Rook, 81: A member of the Van Buren County Republicans' executive committee.
  • Mayra Rodriguez, 64: A lawyer facing potential disciplinary proceedings.
  • Hank Choate, 72: A dairy farmer who met Trump at a White House event.
  • Ken Thompson, 68: A late addition to the original GOP electors.
  • James Renner, 76: Also a late addition, hailing from Lansing.

Each of these individuals has a unique story, a role in this unfolding drama that challenges the very foundations of American democracy. Stay tuned; the saga of the Michigan 16 is far from over.


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