Plot to kidnap Michigan’s governor

With the 2020 Presidential election right around the corner, tensions have been rising between parties. However, no one thought the kidnapping of political leaders would even be an idea. On October 8, 2020, federal and state officials announced that an anti-government group had planned to kidnap Michigan’s governor, Gretchen Whitmer.

The F.B.I began investigating the kidnapping earlier this year with undercover agents and intercepted messages to spy on the group. The anti-government group's original plan included executing government officials, storming the capitol building with explosives and sending bombs codenamed “cupcakes.”

The six men responsible for planning the attack are Adam Fox, Kaleb Franks, Brandon Caserta, Ty Garbin, Daniel Harris and Barry Croft. These six men who planned the initial attack on Governor Whitmer were charged with federal crimes, which can possibly carry into a life sentence. 

In addition to charging the men responsible for planning the attack, seven men will be charged with providing material support to the anti-government group planning to kidnap Governor Whitmer. Paul Bellar, Shawn Fix, Eric Molitor, Michael Null, William Null, Pete Musico, and Joseph Morrison will be charged at the state level. These men were linked to the Wolverine Watchmen militia who wanted to instigate a civil war and engaged in planning and training for an operation to attack Michigan’s capitol building.

Michigan’s governor has blamed the rise of radical anti-government groups on President Trump’s leadership. Governor Whitmer points out the President’s statements at the first Presidential debate: “Just last week the President of the United States stood before the American people and refused to condemn white supremacists and hate groups.”

Governor Whitmer explains, “When I put my hand on my Bible and took the oath of office 22 months ago, I knew this job would be hard. But I’ll be honest, I never could have imagined anything like this.” This comes after violent militia groups have been discussing violently overthrowing certain government officials since the executive stay at home order in March due to covid-19.

In May 2020, hundreds of right-wing militia groups gathered at Michigan’s capitol and the Governor’s home to protest her extended stay-at-home order. The protest, which participants called the “American Patriot Rally”, was organized by the Michigan United for Liberty. Many people who attended the protest did not wear masks and failed to remain socially distant from each other. 

In the past six months, Governor Gretchen Whitmer has received a multitude of death threats because of her blatant disgust with President Trump’s inability to make critical decisions concerning covid-19. However, due to the FBI’s quick action, Governor Whitmer and her family remain safe.