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'She needs to eat lead': Michigan Governor Whitmer faces dozens of death threats, as state commission punts on banning guns at Capitol

Some Michigan lawmakers have been wearing bullet-proof vests to work, Ms Whitmer has said

Griffin Connolly
Tuesday 12 May 2020 16:46 BST
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Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer has been the target of dozens of death threats posted to Facebook groups with hundreds of thousands of people over the last several weeks, many of whom appear to have attended armed rallies at the state Capitol in Lansing to protest the coronavirus shutdown of the state's economy.

Meanwhile, Ms Whitmer said she was "very disappointed" on Monday as the state's Capitol Commission voted to effectively delay many state lawmakers' request to ban guns from the Capitol complex after previous armed protests on 15 April and 30 April.

The commission voted on Monday to establish a panel to examine whether it has the state constitutional power to ban guns at the Capitol, essentially kicking the decision to a later date, NBC News reported.

More protests are planned for this weekend.

Some lawmakers have been wearing bullet-proof vests when they go to the state Capitol, Ms Whitmer said in an interview with ABC News last week.

The governor's stay-at-home orders have so riled some Michiganders that several have threatened on private Facebook pages to lynch her, shoot her, and put her under the guillotine, the Detroit Metro Times reported after gaining access to the groups.

“We need a good old fashioned lynch mob to storm the Capitol, drag her tyrannical ass out onto the street and string her up as our forefathers would have,” a profile belonging to John Campbell Sr. posted in the private Facebook group “People of Michigan vs. Gov Gretchen Whitmer,” which had nearly 9,000 members as of Monday morning, the Metro Times reported.

Other commenters in private Facebook groups shared similar feelings.

“Drag that tyrant governor out to the front lawn. Fit her for a noose,” another person wrote.


Some commenters said Ms Whitmer should face a gun.

“Plain and simple she needs to eat lead and send a statement to the rest of the democrats that they are next,” a profile apparently belonging to a James Greena wrote.

“Wonder how long till she’s hit with a shotgun blast,” a profile for Chris Parrish speculated.

Matthew Woodruff had another idea: “Can we please just take up a collection for an assassin to put that woman from Michigan down,” he asked.​

In one group, "Michiganders Against Excessive Quarantine," which has more than 385,000 members, according to the Metro Times, a profile belonging to a Dave Meisenheimer appeared to lament that there hadn't been any violence at the Capitol yet.

“We haven’t had any bloodshed yet, but the populous is counting to three, and the other day was two,” Mr Meisenheimer wrote. “Next comes watering the tree of liberty with the blood of tyrants,” the post read.

Facebook has removed one of the groups, "Michigan United for Liberty," which rallied at the Capitol in April, for violating the site's terms of service, the Metro Times reported.

Ms Whitmer has said the state needs to do more to ensure the safety of Michigan's state lawmakers while they're at the Capitol.

"No one should be intimidated by someone who's bringing in an assault rifle into their workplace," she said in her ABC News interview last week. "There is conversation about changing that law. I think it's long overdue, and I absolutely support that change. You shouldn't be intimidated going to be the voice of the people who elected you," Ms Whitmer said.

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