A whistleblower complaint from a Detroit city employee who said she was directed to change the dates on ballots that were received after a deadline has been forwarded by GOP officials to Attorney General William Barr’s Department of Justice (DOJ), the Washington Examiner reports.
Michigan state Republican Party chairwoman Laura Cox announced the referral at a presser Friday. It comes amid accusations from President Donald Trump’s campaign and others of election irregularities in Michigan.
“Our democracy works because of our nation’s commitment to the rule of law and the faith its citizens have that elections will be fair, transparent, and that all legal votes will be counted,” Cox said Friday, according to the Examiner. “Unfortunately, it is becoming increasingly clear that this has not been the case in the city of Detroit.”
Allegations of altered ballots
Cox said the city worker “was directed to change the date of receipt in the official election record on ballots which had been received after the deadline.” Michigan law requires that ballots be received by 8 p.m. on Election Day to be considered valid, the Examiner reports.
The whistleblower was counting ballots at Detroit’s TCF Center, the main location for counting absentee ballots in Wayne County, Cox said, according to the Examiner.
“This directive allegedly came from both city and state employees who were working at the TCF Center,” Cox claimed. “These allegations are highlighted by the city of Detroit’s attempt to block Republican poll challengers from supervising this process.”
Lawsuits filed in Michigan
According to the Examiner, multiple lawsuits have been filed in Michigan over alleged voting irregularities, including instances of counting and transposing ballots without Republican inspectors present. A suit from the Trump campaign was swiftly dismissed by an appeals court.
A nonprofit known as the Amistad Project had a similar suit thrown out Friday, the Examiner reported, but an appeal could be forthcoming.
“You’ve got ballots that somebody spilled coffee on, or that it’s torn… You’ve got all these ballots that the machine can’t read,” Phill Kline, an attorney for a nonprofit that filed a suit similar to the Trump campaign’s, told the Examiner. “The law requires the Republican to witness it and then sign a sheet of paper that says every one of these ballots was transferred properly.”
State officials deny claims
In the meantime, state officials are claiming that nothing irregular happened at the TCF Center or anywhere in the state with voting. “In Michigan, I am proud to confirm that all valid ballots, and only valid ballots, have been counted, securely, and accurately and that our election results reflect the will of the people,” Jocelyn Benson, Michigan’s secretary of State, said Wednesday, according to the Examiner.
With 99% of the vote counted, Democrat nominee Joe Biden was more than 147,000 votes ahead of President Trump in the official count in Michigan by Sunday morning, according to The Washington Post. The former vice president claimed victory in the nationwide race on Saturday night, but with lawsuits in states like Arizona and Pennsylvania still pending or on the way, Trump has indicated that he isn’t throwing in the towel just yet.
THE OBSERVERS WERE NOT ALLOWED INTO THE COUNTING ROOMS. I WON THE ELECTION, GOT 71,000,000 LEGAL VOTES. BAD THINGS HAPPENED WHICH OUR OBSERVERS WERE NOT ALLOWED TO SEE. NEVER HAPPENED BEFORE. MILLIONS OF MAIL-IN BALLOTS WERE SENT TO PEOPLE WHO NEVER ASKED FOR THEM!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) November 7, 2020