In the 2022 midterms, MAGA election deniers haven’t necessarily been as overt as Arizona GOP gubernatorial nominee Kari Lake or her Pennsylvania counterpart Doug Mastriano. Some have never acknowledged that President Joe Biden legitimately won the 2020 election but avoid discussing the Big Lie. In Wisconsin, however, Democrats are slamming Republican gubernatorial nominee Tim Michels for saying “the quiet part out loud” and essentially promising that if he defeats Democratic incumbent Gov. Tony Evers on November 8, he would simply throw out any election results that he doesn’t like.
Evers and the liberal group American Bridge 21st Century have tweeted a recording of Michels, during an event in Jefferson County, Wisconsin on Halloween, telling the crowd, “Republicans will never lose another election in Wisconsin after I'm elected governor.”
The liberal group American Bridge 21st Century, in response, tweeted, “GOP #WIGov nominee Tim @MichelsForGov said the quiet part out loud: ‘Republicans will never lose another election in Wisconsin after I'm elected governor.’ Democracy is on the line in Wisconsin. Michels must be stopped.”
In response to Michels’ promise to throw out election results he doesn’t like, Evers tweeted, “Folks, we’ve known this for a while – Tim Michels is a danger to our democracy. When you head to the polls on Election Day, remember that we’re fighting to protect our democracy, voting rights, and free, fair, and secure elections.”
Democratic strategists and organizers have grown worried over what they’ve been seeing in polls of statewide races in Wisconsin. Incumbent Republican Sen. Ron Johnson has had single-digit leads over Democratic challenger Mandela Barnes in a long list of recent polls, and the governor’s race is tight. Fox News and Data for Progress polls released during the second half of October found Michels leading Evers by 1 percent.
Michels, endorsed by former President Donald Trump, is a far-right MAGA candidate who has trafficked in conspiracy theories and promoted the Big Lie. And Evers isn’t shy about calling Michels “a danger to our democracy.”
Business Insider’s Hannah Getahun, in an article published on November 1, reports, “Michels, a candidate endorsed by former President Donald Trump, has questioned the results of the 2020 election and has declined to answer questions as to whether or not he would certify presidential election results as governor should a Democrat win the state in a national election. Michels also suggested that he could pursue an unconstitutional effort to decertify (President Joe) Biden's 2020 win in Wisconsin once he became governor, telling local station WKOW that he would ‘need to see the details.’”
Evers spokesperson Sam Roecker told Business Insider, “Democracy is on the ballot in this election. Tim Michels has made it clear he will do anything in his power to make it harder for Wisconsinites to vote and could even overturn the fair results of our elections if he doesn't like the outcome.”
A variety of political voices, from election law expert Rich Hasen to “Real Time” host Bill Maher to Never Trump conservative and former GOP strategist Tim Miller, have been sounding the alarm about how perilous things could become in the United States in 2024 if enough “Stop the Steal” Republicans and MAGA election deniers win gubernatorial and secretary of state races in 2022. The fear is that if a Democratic presidential nominee wins the popular vote in Pennsylvania, Arizona, Wisconsin and/or Michigan in 2024’s presidential election, Republicans could refuse to certify the election results and try to give the electoral votes to the Republican candidate — thus setting off a major constitutional crisis and widespread unrest. Maher has commented that post-election, late 2024/early 2025 might be a good time to be away from the United States.
Reprinted with permission from Alternet.
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