Judge Refuses to Drop Charges in Nessel’s Case Against Trump Supporters

News: US News
by Nicholas Wylie  •  ChurchMilitant.com  •  October 6, 2023   

Case continues even after Nessel seemingly dropped the ball

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LANSING, Mich. (ChurchMilitant.com) - A group of Michigan residents is still facing the potential of prison time over their role in the 2020 presidential election.

Attorney General Dana Nessel

Ingham County District Court Judge Kristen Simmons refused to throw out Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel's case against 16 Michigan individuals, even after comments Nessel made at a virtual event seemed to exonerate the group. 

Judge Simmons reportedly called Nessel's remarks "speculative" and not enough to have the case thrown out. Simmons also denied Clifford Frost's request to have his case handled separately from the other 15 defendants. 

Nessel charged the 16 so-called false electors on July 18 in connection with the 16 Republican voters' submission of a so-called false electoral vote certificate — one that would have given Michigan's 16 votes to President Donald Trump.

Open Mouth, Insert Foot?

Talking about the case during a Sept. 18 virtual event, the Democrat attorney general proclaimed, "[W]hat they say is, 'We believe that we were in the right. We think that Donald Trump is the real winner of the election.' … They really legit believe that."

"They genuinely believe it. Somebody can't even plead guilty if they wanted to, because they can't admit that what they did violated the law, because they still think they're right," Nessel continued. 

A motion to dismiss the case — brought forth by defendant Clifford Frost's legal team — alleged that, in the same meeting, "the AG also commented about the jury pool in Ingham County and implied how that would help her secure a conviction in this case."

The statement was made in reference to Nessel's comment that "eventually those cases will be tried in Ingham County, which is very different than Antrim County. Ingham County, where Lansing is located, is a very, very Democratic-leaning county."

The Vortex: Michigan AG's New Obsession With Persecuting 2020 Electors

The motion to dismiss, by KDK Law, called the AG's remark "very problematic" and declared the assertion "makes it very clear that the AG is more focused upon securing a criminal conviction as opposed to seeking to administer justice and to follow the rule of law."

Ultimately, the attorneys argued the case should be dropped because Nessel "publicly stated that Defendant and the other fifteen Republican Electors did not have the requisite specific criminal intent required for the felony charges they face."

Nessel herself, the defendant's counsel argued, admitted the 16 truly believed President Trump won the 2020 election, which would nullify a claim of "criminal intent."

Claims & Charges

Nessel's press release announcing the prosecution declared:

These defendants are alleged to have met covertly in the basement of the Michigan Republican Party headquarters on December 14th, and signed their names to multiple certificates stating they were the "duly elected and qualified electors for President and Vice President of the United States of America for the State of Michigan." These false documents were then transmitted to the United States Senate and National Archives in a coordinated effort to award the state's electoral votes to the candidate of their choosing, in place of the candidates actually elected by the people of Michigan.

Each defendant faces up to 85 years in prison after being charged with

  • One count of conspiracy to commit forgery, a 14-year felony
  • Two counts of forgery, a 14-year felony
  • One count of conspiracy to commit uttering and publishing, a 14-year felony
  • One count of uttering and publishing, a 14-year felony 
  • One count of conspiracy to commit election law forgery, a 5-year felony, and
  • Two counts of election law forgery, a 5-year felony.

"The Michigan Criminal Prosecution represents an attempt to criminalize what was at most a futile political protest," a previous motion to dismiss the charges stated. "[T]he Republican Elector Certificate at most had the effect of furthering a political protest and could never have resulted in Michigan's 16 electoral votes being cast for the Republican Party candidates."

The original motion claimed the charges made by Nessel could not under the law be applied to Frost.

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