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13 men charged in plot against Michigan governor

Gov. Gretchen Whitmer in Lansing, Mich. Associated Press/Michigan Office of the Governor

13 men charged in plot against Michigan governor

Six men conspired to buy explosives and tactical gear, capture Democratic Gov. Gretchen Whitmer of Michigan, and try her for “treason,” according to a Thursday federal criminal complaint. They first considered rounding up about 200 men to storm the capitol building in Lansing before settling on a plot focused on Whitmer’s vacation home. Michigan state court separately charged seven men with the Wolverine Watch paramilitary group for planning to storm the Michigan court and seek a “civil war.” The two groups trained together.

What was the plot supposed to accomplish? The conspirators believed many state coronavirus lockdowns violated the U.S. Constitution. An FBI source quoted alleged conspirator Adam Fox saying Whitmer had exercised “uncontrolled power.” The FBI caught the six men training with firearms and conducting combat drills. Whitmer said supremacists groups viewed President Donald Trump’s lack of criticism at last week’s debate with Joe Biden as a “call to action,” although the criminal complaint does not say the conspirators were inspired by Trump. In a series of Twitter posts, Trump said he does not tolerate any extreme violence but criticized Whitmer’s response to the pandemic.

Dig deeper: From the WORLD archives, read Steve West’s report in Liberties on protests over COVID-19 lockdowns.

Editor’s note: WORLD has updated this report since its initial posting.

Kyle Ziemnick

Kyle is a WORLD Digital news reporter. He is a World Journalism Institute and Patrick Henry College graduate. Kyle resides in Purcellville, Va.



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Big Jim

"My conservative friends truly believe this is the crisis that will usher in Communism in America."

That ship has sailed. There have been agents working in this country for over a hundred years. While the effects have ebbed and flowed, the overall trend is in their favor. As Bernie, an avowed Socialist, recently put it "what was once considered radical is now mainstream." Former Gov. Kasich assures us that Joe Biden will be a moderate in office but the Democratic party is filled with young, aggressive, hardcore Leftists. Can Mr. Biden control them? Does he even want to control them?


Hmm, some of the orders were absurd and churches were not exempted from the beginning (early on yes, but not from the beginning) so I disagree with you on that. I do agree that we are not currently shut down. I tend to think that many of the complaints are valid but some of the responses have been bad. Obviously this story is a bit beyond “bad”.

We do need to be able to call out bad behavior from politicians and challenge it without stepping outside the bounds of the law or common decency. If we let those entrusted with protecting and enforcing the law undermine it we are failing our duty as citizens, however if we use overcharged rhetoric instead of using the systems built into the law for these problems again we have failed. Being a responsible citizen requires time and effort.

Tim Miller

I live in Michigan, and the national narrative does not reflect reality. We are not "shut down." Whitmer's orders have exempted churches from the beginning, unlike the orders from many Republican governors. Unfortunately, she annoyed the President early on, and we've become a national story. I have heard rhetoric from seemingly level headed people, for example...
"The founding fathers rebelled over less." 
"I'm not getting on the cattle car."

My conservative friends truly believe this is the crisis that will usher in Communism in America.
I'm not surprised that some genuine nutcases took their beliefs to the next level.


Nuts. Just totally nuts.