Democrat Attorney General Dana Nessel filed felony charges against 16 Republicans for acting as “false electors” during the 2020 election.
The attorney general’s office said all 16 people involved would face eight criminal charges, including forgery and conspiracy to commit election forgery.
The charges amount to a potential sentence of five to fourteen years in prison each.
“The false electors’ actions undermined the public’s faith in the integrity of our elections and, we believe, also plainly violated the laws by which we administer our elections in Michigan,” Nessel said in a statement.
The Michigan Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson said, despite the charges, the country is “still in the midst of a nationally coordinated effort to weaken democracy.”
“As we prepare for the 2024 presidential election, today’s charges are the first in an ongoing effort to not just seek justice for the wrongs of the past but to ensure they do not happen again,” Benson said.
She may be referring to the fact that false certificates were also submitted in Arizona, Georgia, Michigan, New Mexico, Nevada, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin.
The group of 16 in Michigan included the head of the Republican National Committee’s chapter in Michigan, Kathy Berden, as well as the former co-chair of the Michigan Republican Party, Meshawn Maddock, and Shelby Township Clerk Stan Grot.
They allegedly met inside the then-Michigan Republican Party headquarters in mid-December and signed their names to multiple certificates affirming they were qualified electors for Trump.
Those documents were then reportedly transmitted to Congress and the National Archives.
According to NBC, Arizona is also investigating ‘alternate electors’ in the state following the election of a Democrat attorney general.
Arizona Attorney General Kris Mayes narrowly defeated Republican Mark Brnovich, who had not opened an inquiry into the electors.
Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis, also a Democrat, is investigating a similar effort in Georgia.