A pro-Trump Michigan sheriff has launched an investigation into voting machines in his county, although former President Donald Trump won the region with 65% of the vote.
Barry County Sheriff Dar Leaf claimed, as did Trump, that there was electoral fraud leading to President Joe Biden’s victory in the 2020 election. This claim led the sheriff to open an investigation into the voting machines in Barry County after officials there denounced the investigation as “absolutely ridiculous and ridiculous”, local CBS News Channel 3 affiliate reported Friday.
While Biden won Michigan by more than 150,000 votes, or about 2.8%, Trump largely won Barry County. The county’s official election results showed Trump garnered 23,471 votes there, compared to just 11,797 for Biden. With 36,146 votes cast in total in Barry County, that means Trump won around 65% of the vote while Biden garnered less than 33%.
Nonetheless, driven by Trump’s unfounded claims of widespread electoral fraud, Leaf launched an investigation into the voting machines used by his county, according to Channel 3. Local election clerks told the news station they had been interviewed by a private investigator accompanied by a deputy sheriff.
“I want to know the price and who’s paying because it’s absolutely ridiculous and ridiculous,” Robin Hawthorne, Township of Rutland clerk, told Channel 3.
Hawthorne said she was “offended” by the investigation.
“I have been a clerk for 18 years. I am upset that someone says there is something fishy about my election,” she said.
Barry County Clerk Pam Palmer stressed that “everything was perfectly analyzed and balanced”, saying there was “no sign of fraud”.
Michigan Bridge Previously reported In early July, emails showed Leaf had coordinated via email with Trump allies regarding his efforts to seize the voting machines in Barry County. The news agency reported that the sheriff’s attorney was in correspondence with pro-Trump attorney Sidney Powell – who has filed numerous widely criticized election lawsuits in support of the former president – as well as with the retired general Michael Flynn, who briefly served as a Trump national in the White House. security advisor in 2017.
Flynn and Powell, as well as MyPillow CEO Mike Lindell, among others, have played a key role in promoting Trump’s baseless claims that the 2020 election was “rigged” or “stolen.” This extraordinary claim has already been argued at length and totally discredited, but the former president and his loyal supporters continue to promote the baseless claim to rally supporters.
Palmer told Channel 3 he believes Leaf may be trying to access the voting machines to find a way to change votes.
“I think Dar is using Barry County as a model to try to see if they can figure out if there is a way for these machines to shift the vote from Republican to Democrat or Democrat to Republican,” the official said. local county.
Barry County Deputy Sheriff Jason Sixberry confirmed to the local news station that a deputy had been assigned to the investigation. However, he said funds from the sheriff’s office were not being used to pay the outside investigator who interviewed local election officials.
News week contacted the sheriff’s office for further comment on Saturday, but did not immediately receive a response.
Michigan has already conducted the most in-depth audit in the history of its 2020 election results, completing the process in early March. This included a thorough audit of electoral procedures, the votes that counted the votes and the ballots themselves, Detroit Free Press reported at the time.
“It is time for leaders from all walks of life to tell their constituents the truth, that our election was the safest in history, and that the results faithfully reflect the will of Michigan voters,” the President said in early March. Michigan Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson. Although Trump won Michigan in 2016 by a narrow margin of just 0.2%, the Midwestern state had gone for the Democrats in every previous election dating back to 1992.
Dozens of election lawsuits filed by Trump and his supporters have failed in state and federal courts. Even the judges appointed by Trump and his fellow Republicans dismissed the often bizarre allegations. Ballot audits and recounts, including in major battlefield states where Republicans who voted for Trump oversaw the election, reaffirmed Biden’s victory.
Former United States Attorney General William Barr, who was widely regarded as one of Trump’s most loyal cabinet officials, said in early December there was “no evidence” to support the claims widespread fraud. In addition, the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency of the Department of Homeland Security claimed after the election that it was “the safest in American history.” The federal agency, which was headed by a person appointed by Trump at the time, said there was “no evidence that a voting system suppressed or lost votes, altered votes or was compromised in any way “.
Nonetheless, polls have shown that a significant majority of Republican voters do not believe Biden is the legitimate president. Thousands of Trump supporters continue to regularly attend rallies led by Trump loyalists – like Lindell, Powell and Flynn – where conspiracy theories debunked and baseless claims about election results are promoted.