DETROIT (AP) – Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer said Sunday that President Donald Trump incited “domestic terrorism” after he “locked her up” at his rally in the state the night before.
Whitmer told NBC’s Meet the Press that the rhetoric was “incredibly troubling” just over a week after authorities announced they had foiled an alleged conspiracy to kidnap the Democratic governor.
“The president is back and inspiring and encouraging this type of domestic terrorism,”
At a rally in Muskegon on Saturday In the evening, Trump urged supporters to urge Whitmer to reopen the state after the COVID-19 restrictions. When the crowd started chanting “lock them up,” added Trump, “lock them all up.”
House spokeswoman Nancy Pelosi told ABC’s “This Week” that Trump’s statements were “irresponsible” and accused him of employing fear tactics.
Several representatives from the Republican and Trump campaigns appeared on Sunday news broadcasts to defend the president.
“I don’t think he did anything to provoke people to threaten this woman in the first place. He had fun at a Trump rally, and frankly there are bigger problems for everyday Americans right now, “Lara Trump, the president’s daughter-in-law and senior campaign advisor, told CNN’s State of the Union.”
Democrats were looking To tie Trump to the alleged conspiracy against Whitmer and to respond to the President’s tweet earlier this year about “LIBERATE MICHIGAN!” after Whitmer restricted personal movement and the economy in response to the coronavirus pandemic. Michigan – especially the Detroit area – was hit hard early on during the pandemic. Many of the borders have since been lifted.
The authorities claim to be members of two anti-government paramilitary groups participated in the conspiracy to lead Whitmer’s kidnapping, though some were charged under federal law and others under state law. Six men, led by Adam Fox of the Michigan III% ers, are on trial in federal court for conspiracy to kidnap. Eight other people believed to be members or employees of a group called Wolverine Watchmen are facing charges in a state court on charges including material support for acts of terrorism.
Some of the Wolverine Watchmen are accused of plotting other violent crimes, such as storming the Michigan Capitol and assaulting police officers.