by Scott McClallen
Michigan House Speaker Lee Chatfield, R-Levering, on Friday said lawmakers will hold hearings Saturday to look into election fraud claims in the 2020 presidential election.
“Every single legal vote needs to be counted, regardless of who cast it or who they voted for. And then the candidate who wins the most of those votes will win Michigan’s electoral votes, just like it always has been. Nothing about that process will change in 2020,” Chatfield said in a statement.
“America’s democracy is sacred, and safe and secure elections are how we protect it. That is why the House and Senate oversight committees will begin hearings soon looking into the voting and counting process in our state to give everyone confidence in the results and to make sure the next election runs much more smoothly. The people of Michigan deserve peace of mind, and we are going to provide it.”
Several accusations of election fraud, typos, and glitches have been made this week.
Questions followed after a software glitch initially gave roughly 5,000 votes cast for President Donald Trump to former Vice President Joe Biden in Antrim County, sparking a manual recount.
Other Michigan counties used the same software.
House Speaker Lee Chatfield’s spokesman, Gideon D’Assandro, told The Center Square in an email that the hearing will serve to answer Michiganders’ questions.
“Representatives are currently receiving a lot of questions from concerned residents, and there is a lot of confusion about the process,” D’Assandro said.
“These hearings are not meant to change any results, but they can provide peace of mind and answers for the people of Michigan.”
State Sen. Ed McBroom, R-Vulcan, said in a statement that lawmakers will investigate the election process and “seek to determine whether improprieties exist. We must avoid spreading rumors or making pronouncements without having all the facts.
“Pouring gas on every potential fear and spreading doubt about the integrity of the system is not the answer, nor is ignoring troubling reports and dismissing out of hand anecdotal evidence that problems may exist,” McBroom said.
Michigan Republican Party Chairman Laura Cox claimed other voting irregularities occurred and said on Friday that the faulty tabulating software, Election Source, was used in 47 counties across Michigan.
Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson’s office hasn’t responded to a question verifying Cox’s software claim.
“The irregularities reported this morning are incredibly troubling, especially given how close the election results are in Michigan.” Cox said in a Wednesday statement.
“At this point, it is unclear whether or not these issues were caused by incompetence or corruption, but the fact that they exist is of great concern, and the Michigan Republican Party will spare no expense to expose the truth of what happened in [Tuesday’s] election.”
Tom McMillin, a former state lawmaker from Oakland County, told the Free Press on Wednesday that Trump and Republican U.S Senate candidate John James could net 4,000 to 5,000 votes because of the glitch.
Senate Minority Leader Jim Ananich, D-Flint, pushed back on Chatfield’s announcement, calling it a “a very sad development and it only serves to feed the chaos on which this president thrives.
“President Trump won the election by 10,000 votes in 2016 and Democrats took it like adults,” Ananich said in a statement. “This time, Vice President Biden won by nearly 15 times Trump’s margin, but Republicans are choosing to side with conspiracy theorists and abuse the power of the Legislature in attempt to soothe their bruised egos.”
As of the latest count, Biden received 2,790,648 votes in Michigan to Trump’s 2,644,525.
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Scott McClallen is a staff writer covering Michigan and Minnesota for The Center Square. A graduate of Hillsdale College, his work has appeared on Forbes.com and FEE.org. Previously, he worked as a financial analyst at Pepsi.