search
Sections List
American Journal News

Tudor Dixon repeatedly mocks Gretchen Whitmer for being target of kidnapping conspiracy

‘That wasn’t a joke,’ the Republican nominee for Michigan governor told a crowd at an event alongside Kellyanne Conway in defense of remarks she made about Whitmer.

By Adrian Cole - September 28, 2022
Share
Tudor Dixon
Michigan gubernatorial candidate Tudor Dixon speaks to the media after turning in nominating petitions, Tuesday, April 19, 2022 in Lansing, Mich. Ten Republicans have filed petitions to run for governor by the deadline, a record number in recent history, creating a huge field for a primary electorate that will decide who challenges Democrat Gretchen Whitmer. The lineup for the August primary may shrink if election officials find problems with signatures that were submitted. (Craig Mauger/The Detroit News via AP)

Michigan Republican gubernatorial candidate Tudor Dixon made light of a 2020 plot to kidnap Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer (D), her opponent, in two different appearances on Friday.

Dixon, delivering remarks at a campaign event regarding Whitmer’s pandemic policies on business, told the crowd, “The sad thing is, Gretchen will tie your hands, put a gun to your head, and ask if you’re ready to talk. For someone so worried about being kidnapped, Gretchen Whitmer sure is good at taking business hostage and holding it for ransom.”

Kidnapping Whitmer was more than a worry she had: Several far-right extremists planned and prepared to orchestrate an attempt to kidnap her, which prosecutors have argued was planned in response to Whitmer’s policies to stop the spread of COVID-19, in the hope that the plot would inspire similar actions against other officials across the country.

Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel (D) tweeted on Friday: “This statement is repugnant. @GovWhitmer is the victim of a very serious plot to kidnap and assassinate her. Anyone who would make light of such an effort is not fit to hold public office at any level.”

Dixon similarly mocked the threat against Whitmer later that same day at a rally in Muskegon, following an appearance by Kellyanne Conway, a former adviser to Donald Trump. While mimicking Whitmer when she recently held Joe Biden’s hand during their attendance at the Detroit Auto show, Dixon said Whitmer would “rather be kidnapped by the FBI.”

In reference to her comments from earlier that day, Dixon told the crowd, “No, that wasn’t a joke. If you were afraid of that you should know what it’s like to have your life ripped away from you. That was a joke, just so the media gets it.”

In February 2022, two of the accused defendants, Ty Gerbin and Kaleb Franks, pleaded guilty to conspiracy charges as well as part of a plea agreement. In August, two others,  Barry Croft and Adam Fox, were convicted in federal court on charges of kidnapping conspiracy and conspiracy to use weapons of mass destruction.

Whitmer told the Washington Post in July, “They were going to put me on a trial and then execute me. It was an assassination plot, but no one talks about it that way. Even the way people talk about it has muted the seriousness of it.”

Dixon is not the first Michigan Republican to dismiss the seriousness of the kidnapping plan. Garrett Soldano, one of Dixon’s opponents in the gubernatorial primary, claimed the kidnapping was fake in a statement to his campaign website, alleging that “The FBI conceived a plot to kidnap Gretchen Whitmer and preyed on Michiganders to push it along.”

Matt DePerno, the Republican nominee for state attorney general, echoed Soldano’s claim in a tweet in April: “On @TruckerRandy‘s radio show I said the Whitmer kidnapping sham was entrapment by the FBI designed to create a false narrative before the election. I can’t wait to investigate this one,” he said. “@gretchenwhitmer stop shredding docs and deleting emails.”

Whitmer’s public health measures, which played a key role in the kidnappers’ motivations, are credited for possibly saving thousands of lives — but Dixon has repeatedly criticized them, and claims on her campaign website that “lockdowns destroyed Michigan.”

Dixon vows to investigate those pandemic policies if she takes office. Whitmer’s director of public health, Robert Gordon, has already defended several of the actions taken throughout the pandemic in front of members of the state’s legislature multiple times. He denounced claims that Whitmer’s policies created a high death toll as “baseless and groundless.”  

In response to Dixon’s first remarks, Whitmer’s campaign told the Local 4 Detroit news station: “Threats of violence – whether to Governor Whitmer or to candidates or elected officials on the other side of the aisle – are no laughing matter, and the fact that Tudor Dixon thinks it’s a joke shows that she’s absolutely unfit to serve in public office.”

Published with permission of The American Independent Foundation.


Read More
Rosenblum, other Democratic AGs ask SCOTUS to block red state bans on emergency abortions

Rosenblum, other Democratic AGs ask SCOTUS to block red state bans on emergency abortions

By Gloria Rebecca Gomez, Arizona Mirror - April 01, 2024
Ken Paxton paid $2.3 million to defense lawyers for impeachment trial

Ken Paxton paid $2.3 million to defense lawyers for impeachment trial

By Patrick Svitek, The Texas Tribune - January 18, 2024
Texas governor and attorney general do little to curb state’s chemical plant crisis

Texas governor and attorney general do little to curb state’s chemical plant crisis

By Jesse Valentine - December 08, 2023
Abortion advocates submit ballot issue affirming right to terminate pregnancy in Montana

Abortion advocates submit ballot issue affirming right to terminate pregnancy in Montana

By Nicole Girten - November 27, 2023
Companies facing legal action fill coffers of Kentucky Republican attorney general nominee

Companies facing legal action fill coffers of Kentucky Republican attorney general nominee

By Jesse Valentine - November 02, 2023
Attorney General Ken Paxton’s securities fraud trial set for April 15

Attorney General Ken Paxton’s securities fraud trial set for April 15

By Patrick Svitek, The Texas Tribune - October 30, 2023
AJ News
Latest
GOP Rep. Zach Nunn suggests laws against hate crime aren’t needed

GOP Rep. Zach Nunn suggests laws against hate crime aren’t needed

By Jesse Valentine - April 15, 2024
GOP Senate candidate Hung Cao blames racial equity for Baltimore bridge tragedy

GOP Senate candidate Hung Cao blames racial equity for Baltimore bridge tragedy

By Jesse Valentine - March 29, 2024
GOP Rep. Jennifer Kiggans donates thousands to far-right extremists

GOP Rep. Jennifer Kiggans donates thousands to far-right extremists

By Jesse Valentine - March 08, 2024
Ohio senate candidate Bernie Moreno: “Absolute pro-life no exceptions.”

Ohio senate candidate Bernie Moreno: “Absolute pro-life no exceptions.”

By Jesse Valentine - March 07, 2024
Anti-China Republicans pocket thousands from Chinese owned conglomerate

Anti-China Republicans pocket thousands from Chinese owned conglomerate

By Jesse Valentine - March 04, 2024
Republican Eric Hovde makes inconsistent statements about family history

Republican Eric Hovde makes inconsistent statements about family history

By Jesse Valentine - February 26, 2024
Republican David McCormick invests millions in website that platforms Holocaust denial

Republican David McCormick invests millions in website that platforms Holocaust denial

By Jesse Valentine - February 09, 2024
Lawmakers will again take up bills expanding, tightening gun laws

Lawmakers will again take up bills expanding, tightening gun laws

By Annmarie Timmins, New Hampshire Bulletin - January 31, 2024
UAW delivers rousing presidential endorsement for Biden over ‘scab’ Trump

UAW delivers rousing presidential endorsement for Biden over ‘scab’ Trump

By Ashley Murray, States Newsroom - January 24, 2024
Republicans Sam Brown and Jeff Gunter sling mud in Nevada senate primary

Republicans Sam Brown and Jeff Gunter sling mud in Nevada senate primary

By Jesse Valentine - January 17, 2024
A Young Texas Woman Almost Died Due To The Texas Abortion Bans – Now She’s Battling To Save Other Women

A Young Texas Woman Almost Died Due To The Texas Abortion Bans – Now She’s Battling To Save Other Women

By Bonnie Fuller - January 10, 2024
Health care legislation preview: Maryland advocates want to focus on access, patients in 2024 session

Health care legislation preview: Maryland advocates want to focus on access, patients in 2024 session

By Danielle J. Brown, Maryland Matters - January 08, 2024
How GOP senate hopefuls try to excuse the  January 6 insurrection

How GOP senate hopefuls try to excuse the  January 6 insurrection

By Jesse Valentine - January 05, 2024
NH lawmakers will be taking up major voting bills this year. Here are some to watch for.

NH lawmakers will be taking up major voting bills this year. Here are some to watch for.

By Ethan DeWitt, New Hampshire Bulletin - January 04, 2024
Republican US Senate candidates want to make Trump’s tax cuts permanent 

Republican US Senate candidates want to make Trump’s tax cuts permanent 

By Jesse Valentine - December 22, 2023
Rand Paul went all in on the Kentucky governor’s race. It didn’t work.

Rand Paul went all in on the Kentucky governor’s race. It didn’t work.

By - December 15, 2023
Texas governor and attorney general do little to curb state’s chemical plant crisis

Texas governor and attorney general do little to curb state’s chemical plant crisis

By Jesse Valentine - December 08, 2023
Likely GOP Senate candidate Eric Hovde proposed tax hike for poorer workers and retirees

Likely GOP Senate candidate Eric Hovde proposed tax hike for poorer workers and retirees

By Jesse Valentine - December 07, 2023
Whitmer signs specific criminal penalties for assaulting health care workers into law

Whitmer signs specific criminal penalties for assaulting health care workers into law

By Anna Liz Nichols, Michigan Advance - December 06, 2023
105 Republicans voted to expel Santos for things Trump has also done

105 Republicans voted to expel Santos for things Trump has also done

By Jesse Valentine - December 05, 2023
For Texas Sen. Ted Cruz, another Trump term is another chance to kill Obamacare

For Texas Sen. Ted Cruz, another Trump term is another chance to kill Obamacare

By Jesse Valentine - December 04, 2023
Florida Sen. Rick Scott backs Donald Trump in revived push to repeal Obamacare

Florida Sen. Rick Scott backs Donald Trump in revived push to repeal Obamacare

By Jesse Valentine - November 30, 2023
Tate Reeves took donations from power company that hiked customer rates

Tate Reeves took donations from power company that hiked customer rates

By Jesse Valentine - November 06, 2023
Daniel Cameron ran on depoliticizing the Kentucky AG’s office. He made it more political.

Daniel Cameron ran on depoliticizing the Kentucky AG’s office. He made it more political.

By Jesse Valentine - November 03, 2023
Republican operatives sound every alarm on current trajectory of 2023 governor’s race

Republican operatives sound every alarm on current trajectory of 2023 governor’s race

By Adam Ganucheau, Mississippi Today - October 24, 2023
Ohio doctors fear effects of emergency abortion care case set to go before U.S. Supreme Court

Ohio doctors fear effects of emergency abortion care case set to go before U.S. Supreme Court

By Susan Tebben, Ohio Capital Journal - April 23, 2024
President Biden visits Prince William park to talk solar, youth involvement on Earth Day

President Biden visits Prince William park to talk solar, youth involvement on Earth Day

By Charlie Paullin, Virginia Mercury - April 23, 2024
Biden on abortion rights: President expects to give speech Tuesday on new Florida 6-week ban

Biden on abortion rights: President expects to give speech Tuesday on new Florida 6-week ban

By Mitch Perry, Florida Phoenix - April 22, 2024
New group will advocate for increased voting access for Alabamians with disabilities

New group will advocate for increased voting access for Alabamians with disabilities

By Ralph Chapoco, Alabama Reflector - April 22, 2024
Group launches effort to explore ballot initiative restoring abortion access in Idaho

Group launches effort to explore ballot initiative restoring abortion access in Idaho

By Kelcie Moseley-Morris, Idaho Capital Sun - April 19, 2024
Michigan House panel OKs bills allowing pharmacists to prescribe birth control

Michigan House panel OKs bills allowing pharmacists to prescribe birth control

By Katie O'Brien Kelley, Michigan Advance - April 19, 2024