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Illegal Contributions, Campaign Collusion, and Criminal ImmunityHow Gretchen Whitmer Broke Michigan Campaign Finance Law and Got Away With it LANSING, Mich., February 12, 2019–  The following is a research briefing from the Michigan Republican Party outlining the knowing and intentional violation of Michigan campaign finance law by Gretchen Whitmer, her campaign “Whitmer for Governor,” and her dark money special interest group “Build A Better Michigan.”  These violations could have resulted in a multi-million dollar fine and possible jail time for many involved. In addition, our research shows that there was not only collusion between the organizations, but that they shared the same paid staff. In a backroom settlement, Whitmer and her co-conspirators were fined less than 2 percent of their illegal political expenditures and granted immunity from criminal prosecution.    Whitmer cheated, and despite her campaign promises to be “more open, transparent and accountable to Michigan taxpayers” in order to “infuse integrity in governance and earn back public confidence,” Whitmer has started her service as Michigan’s governor under a cloud of corruption.   WHITMER BROKE THE LAW Secretary Of State Benson Ruled That Governor Whitmer And Build A Better Michigan Violated Michigan Campaign Finance Law. Secretary Of State Benson Ruled That Gretchen Whitmer And Build A Better Michigan Violated Michigan Campaign Finance Law By Coordinating Political Ads That Expressly Advocate Her Candidacy. (Jocelyn Benson, Letter To Build A Better Michigan And Whitmer For Governor, 2/5/19) SOS Benson Signed A Conciliation Agreement Allowing Build a Better Michigan To Pay A Insignificant Fine And Absolving Whitmer... More >

Whitmer WhiffsGovernor light on Details, Heavy on Spending LANSING, Mich., February 12, 2019–  The following is a statement from Michigan Republican Party Chairman Ron Weiser on Governor Whitmer’s State of the State address delivered tonight before a joint session of the state legislature: “During the ‘Lost Decade,’ Michigan learned the hard way that we can’t spend our way to prosperity. Due to the poor economic decisions of a previous Democrat Governor, Michigan’s unemployment rate led the nation and tens of thousands fled our state to find opportunity elsewhere. Tonight, Governor Whitmer pledged her administration to the same failed agenda: laying out billions in new government spending without any plan to pay for it. These pie in the sky ideas will result in higher taxes, smaller paychecks, and cost of living increases for Michigan families. “As for details on her plan to fix the “damn roads,” the Governor was silent, proving there is no real plan behind the catchphrase.  New Democrat Governor, same failed Democrat agenda.” More >

Benson’s Sweetheart Settlement Grants Governor Criminal Immunity LANSING, Mich., February 14, 2019–  The following is a statement from Michigan Republican Party Legal Counsel Michael J. Pattwell explaining the legal ramifications of Jocelyn Benson’s sweetheart settlement with Governor Gretchen Whitmer. The settlement has come under fire for allowing Whitmer and her allies to pay a 2% fine on campaign violations which amounted to millions of dollars in illegal spending. In addition to fines, Whitmer and her allies also faced possible criminal charges for which they have been granted legal immunity from by Benson.  “Build a Better Michigan illegally expended over $2,000,000 of corporate and union funds to expressly advocate for Gretchen Whitmer’s candidacy. The coordinated effort marked one of the largest illegal political expenditures observed in Michigan history. Under Michigan campaign finance law, making illegal corporate/union contributions and/or evading contribution limits subjects violators to criminal prosecution and potentially millions in fines. “For violations such as this, the past practice of the SOS’s office was to levy a fine equal to the amount of the illegal expenditure. However, in this case, Benson elected to impose a fine of less than 2% of the illegal expenditure and grant immunity from criminal prosecution to Whitmer and the special interest group. “Benson’s sweetheart settlement marks such a drastic departure from established precedent so as to undermine the efficacy of the campaign finance requirements she swore an oath to uphold.” More >

In case you missed it: on Sunday the Detroit Free Press reported that Attorney General-elect Dana Nessel has already broken her promise to defend the women of Michigan.  Nessel has appointed her friend Michael Sareini as a key advisor on her transition team. Sareini is a Wayne County Democrat insider who was convicted of domestic violence and accused of assault and harassment by three family members. In 2000, a judge issued a Personal Protection Order against Sareini when his ex-wife testified that the Dearborn city councilman had grabbed her by the throat and knocked her to the ground in a fit of rage.  In 2001, Sareini was actually sentenced for domestic violence.  Nessel’s defense of the appointment? “It is neither fair nor appropriate to judge Mike or anyone else based on unsustained {sic} allegations made nearly 20 years ago.” Funny, Nessel didn’t think that last fall when she said Justice Brent Kavanaugh lacked “the moral fitness we should demand of anyone who aims to sit on our nation’s highest court” based on accusations brought up 30 years later without any complaint at the time of the alleged event, without evidence or substantiation. Sareini, however, was convicted. On the eve of her being sworn in as our state’s top cop, it is clear: whether you are an exploited teen, a child who is the victim of a predator, or a woman in need, you can only count on Dana Nessel if she thinks it benefits her. The rest of Michigan's women... More >

MRP Office in Traverse City Temporarily Closed Due to Bomb Threat LANSING, Mich., October 31, 2018 – This afternoon, the Michigan Republican Party Office in Traverse City was shut down temporarily after an unidentified individual entered the office and threatened to blow up the facility. After the threat, the individual fled. The Grand Traverse Sheriff’s Department rapidly responded and are currently sweeping the facility. Please see the statement from MRP Chief of Staff Colleen Pero: “This is the second time in the past week that an MRP office has been threated or vandalized. Democrats are waking up to the fact that their dreams of a blue wave are quickly evaporating, and now extremist activists are responding with intimidation and threats of violence. We thank the Grand Traverse Sheriff’s Department for their quick response and all that they are doing to ensure the safety of our employees and volunteers.” Early last Friday the Michigan Republican Party Headquarters in Lansing was vandalized by two unknown individuals and Republican lawn signs across the state are also being defaced and stolen.   More >

Press Releases

Illegal Contributions, Campaign Collusion, and Criminal ImmunityHow Gretchen Whitmer Broke Michigan Campaign Finance Law and Got Away With it LANSING, Mich., February 12, 2019–  The following is a research briefing from the Michigan Republican Party outlining the knowing and intentional violation of Michigan campaign finance law by Gretchen Whitmer, her campaign “Whitmer for Governor,” and her dark money special interest group “Build A Better Michigan.”  These violations could have resulted in a multi-million dollar fine and possible jail time for many involved. In addition, our research shows that there was not only collusion between the organizations, but that they shared the same paid staff. In a backroom settlement, Whitmer and her co-conspirators were fined less than 2 percent of their illegal political expenditures and granted immunity from criminal prosecution.    Whitmer cheated, and despite her campaign promises to be “more open, transparent and accountable to Michigan taxpayers” in order to “infuse integrity in governance and earn back public confidence,” Whitmer has started her service as Michigan’s governor under a cloud of corruption.   WHITMER BROKE THE LAW Secretary Of State Benson Ruled That Governor Whitmer And Build A Better Michigan Violated Michigan Campaign Finance Law. Secretary Of State Benson Ruled That Gretchen Whitmer And Build A Better Michigan Violated Michigan Campaign Finance Law By Coordinating Political Ads That Expressly Advocate Her Candidacy. (Jocelyn Benson, Letter To Build A Better Michigan And Whitmer For Governor, 2/5/19) SOS Benson Signed A Conciliation Agreement Allowing Build a Better Michigan To Pay A Insignificant Fine And Absolving Whitmer... More >

Whitmer WhiffsGovernor light on Details, Heavy on Spending LANSING, Mich., February 12, 2019–  The following is a statement from Michigan Republican Party Chairman Ron Weiser on Governor Whitmer’s State of the State address delivered tonight before a joint session of the state legislature: “During the ‘Lost Decade,’ Michigan learned the hard way that we can’t spend our way to prosperity. Due to the poor economic decisions of a previous Democrat Governor, Michigan’s unemployment rate led the nation and tens of thousands fled our state to find opportunity elsewhere. Tonight, Governor Whitmer pledged her administration to the same failed agenda: laying out billions in new government spending without any plan to pay for it. These pie in the sky ideas will result in higher taxes, smaller paychecks, and cost of living increases for Michigan families. “As for details on her plan to fix the “damn roads,” the Governor was silent, proving there is no real plan behind the catchphrase.  New Democrat Governor, same failed Democrat agenda.” More >

Benson’s Sweetheart Settlement Grants Governor Criminal Immunity LANSING, Mich., February 14, 2019–  The following is a statement from Michigan Republican Party Legal Counsel Michael J. Pattwell explaining the legal ramifications of Jocelyn Benson’s sweetheart settlement with Governor Gretchen Whitmer. The settlement has come under fire for allowing Whitmer and her allies to pay a 2% fine on campaign violations which amounted to millions of dollars in illegal spending. In addition to fines, Whitmer and her allies also faced possible criminal charges for which they have been granted legal immunity from by Benson.  “Build a Better Michigan illegally expended over $2,000,000 of corporate and union funds to expressly advocate for Gretchen Whitmer’s candidacy. The coordinated effort marked one of the largest illegal political expenditures observed in Michigan history. Under Michigan campaign finance law, making illegal corporate/union contributions and/or evading contribution limits subjects violators to criminal prosecution and potentially millions in fines. “For violations such as this, the past practice of the SOS’s office was to levy a fine equal to the amount of the illegal expenditure. However, in this case, Benson elected to impose a fine of less than 2% of the illegal expenditure and grant immunity from criminal prosecution to Whitmer and the special interest group. “Benson’s sweetheart settlement marks such a drastic departure from established precedent so as to undermine the efficacy of the campaign finance requirements she swore an oath to uphold.” More >

In case you missed it: on Sunday the Detroit Free Press reported that Attorney General-elect Dana Nessel has already broken her promise to defend the women of Michigan.  Nessel has appointed her friend Michael Sareini as a key advisor on her transition team. Sareini is a Wayne County Democrat insider who was convicted of domestic violence and accused of assault and harassment by three family members. In 2000, a judge issued a Personal Protection Order against Sareini when his ex-wife testified that the Dearborn city councilman had grabbed her by the throat and knocked her to the ground in a fit of rage.  In 2001, Sareini was actually sentenced for domestic violence.  Nessel’s defense of the appointment? “It is neither fair nor appropriate to judge Mike or anyone else based on unsustained {sic} allegations made nearly 20 years ago.” Funny, Nessel didn’t think that last fall when she said Justice Brent Kavanaugh lacked “the moral fitness we should demand of anyone who aims to sit on our nation’s highest court” based on accusations brought up 30 years later without any complaint at the time of the alleged event, without evidence or substantiation. Sareini, however, was convicted. On the eve of her being sworn in as our state’s top cop, it is clear: whether you are an exploited teen, a child who is the victim of a predator, or a woman in need, you can only count on Dana Nessel if she thinks it benefits her. The rest of Michigan's women... More >

MRP Office in Traverse City Temporarily Closed Due to Bomb Threat LANSING, Mich., October 31, 2018 – This afternoon, the Michigan Republican Party Office in Traverse City was shut down temporarily after an unidentified individual entered the office and threatened to blow up the facility. After the threat, the individual fled. The Grand Traverse Sheriff’s Department rapidly responded and are currently sweeping the facility. Please see the statement from MRP Chief of Staff Colleen Pero: “This is the second time in the past week that an MRP office has been threated or vandalized. Democrats are waking up to the fact that their dreams of a blue wave are quickly evaporating, and now extremist activists are responding with intimidation and threats of violence. We thank the Grand Traverse Sheriff’s Department for their quick response and all that they are doing to ensure the safety of our employees and volunteers.” Early last Friday the Michigan Republican Party Headquarters in Lansing was vandalized by two unknown individuals and Republican lawn signs across the state are also being defaced and stolen.   More >

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