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It was about more than kidnapping Michigan’s governor — it was a statement

It was about more than kidnapping Michigan’s governor — it was a statement

Michigan – Last week, Michigan’s governor, Gretchen Whitmer was the subject of a kidnapping plot. 13 men attempted to take “control” of the government, according to multiple news sources. They planned to do so by committing terrorist acts.

Former Marines were involved in the plot, as were members of two militia groups, one called the Wolverine Watchmen. The FBI and state authorities thwarted the plot attempt. These men wanted to do more than just kidnap the governor — according to multiple sources, they wanted to completely overthrow the U.S.  government. 

What exactly happened?

State authorities and the FBI charged 13 men who claimed to work with the militia groups. The crimes include terrorism, conspiracy, and gun-related offenses. Authorities discovered the kidnapping plot on social media. These men hailed from multiple states, which are unknown at this time.

The plot was in the planning for months. The FBI said that during the summer the group met for firearms training and combat drills in the basement of a vacuum store. Additionally, the men learned to build explosives. This would become instrumental to their plan, which included “firebombing police vehicles,” according to Fox News.

The plan was to kidnap Governor Gretchen Whitmer as she traveled to her western Michigan vacation home in August and September. In surveying the area, the group found a highway bridge that could have served as a place to detonate bombs, according to the FBI.

Once the governor was held hostage, the men planned to “try” her for treason. The group also wanted to overthrow Michigan’s Democratic-led state government. In addition to Gov. Whitmer, the plotters also planned to arrest other government officials including Virginia’s Democratic governor, Ralph Northam.

This was not an isolated incident — but, it is indicative of a larger movement.

What’s the bigger meaning?

In an official criminal complaint, Special Agent Richard J. Trask II said the Wolverine Watchmen are a “militia group.” The agent went on to say that during their meetings, the men talked about creating a “self-sufficient” society. Multiple state governments were discussed during these meetings, Trask continued, but their intended target was Whitmer.

The means to achieve this idealized society involved peaceful and violent solutions, according to the same complaint. In a livestream to a private Facebook group, one man, Adam Fox, referred to Whitmer as a “tyrant b***h.” Fox said that the group had to “do something” about her, because she has “uncontrolled power” with “no checks and balances.”

This group of men aimed to fundamentally alter Michigan’s government. Had they succeeded, the official complaint from Trask details multiple routes to achieve this — including kidnapping, arson, and death.

Governor Whitmer’s response

“I knew my job would be hard, but I’ll be honest, I never could have imagined anything like this,” Gov. Whitmer said in a press conference last week. The president belittled Whitmer’s response to the plot saying he expected gratitude from Whitmer for help from federal authorities.

Will other Democratic state governments be threatened or attacked by similar militia groups?

Image Credit: Michigan Officer of the Governor, via AP, Pool

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Lead developer and editor; legal/political reporter for the Current Affairs Times. World traveler. Mac 'n' cheese lover.

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