31ºF

Whitmer discusses election subpoena, Biden’s cabinet and gives stark COVID warning

No evidence of anything that would undermine validity of election, state leader says

DETROIT – Only one day after Michigan reported a record 6,225 cases and Republican lawmakers issued a subpoena for election results, Gov. Gretchen Whitmer spoke with Local 4 News.

Both locally and nationally Republicans are calling for investigations into potential voter fraud without proof.

“I think it is time to embrace the will of the people. There has not been any evidence of anything that would undermine the validity of this election. And it is time to move forward,” said Whitmer in response to the subpoena for election records.

Whitmer also praised Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson, Attorney General Dana Nessel, clerks across the state and the tens of thousands of Election Day volunteers.

Right after former vice president Joe Biden was announced as the projected winner of the White House race celebratory events took place in Detroit and around the country.

Still, supporters of President Donald Trump protested in Lansing yesterday energized by the president’s declaration that he will not concede.

Tempers flared in the crowd with some supporters unwilling to accept the election results.

Whitmer talked about the huge and troubling divide between supporters of Trump and Biden nationally.

“We are deeply divided as a nation and certainly we see those divisions here in our state and yet our Democratic process depends on the will of the people. People decide our leaders and when the people have spoken, it is incumbent on all of us to rise to the ideals of this democracy and have a peaceful exchange of power and to move forward together,” Whitmer said.

She added that her administration is going to focus on bringing people together during the pandemic which has already accounted for more than 236,000 deaths nationwide with cases surging weekly in Michigan.

“We have a common enemy and that common enemy is a virus. It doesn’t care about our politics...This administration is going to get its arms around us. Around our health, around the public health crisis and around getting us back to work safely and keeping our kids in school safely,” she said.

The state leader’s interview came one day after she issued a statement congratulating Biden on his victory.

“I want to congratulate President-Elect Joe Biden and Vice President-Elect Kamala Harris on their hard-fought win in this election. I look forward to working with both of them as we continue to fight the spread of COVID-19, work to rebuild our economy, and save lives,” said Whitmer in the statement issued Saturday.

Currently, there is a Michigan mask mandate in place that was issued by the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services.

Whitmer did ask the state Legislature to also issue a mandate which it deemed was not necessary.

“We do have a statewide mandate and I think that is important for people to understand. Our Supreme Court has created a lot of confusion and that is unfortunate because right now more than ever we need to embrace a mask. We have to get the politics out of this public health crisis. I would love for the legislature to codify the rule that came out of MDHHS,” said Whitmer.

“To this day, the best tool we have to keep ourselves safe and to protect our economy is simply wearing a mask.”

She urged people to be cautious of the virus and issued a stark warning that it could impact them whether or not they are vulnerable to it.

“Everyone will pay a price if our hospitals get overrun. The person who has a heart attack, the person who gets in a car accident. If our hospitals are filled with COVID patients, if our nurses and doctors are so fatigue, they can’t stay on the frontline, that jeopardizes all of our health,” said Whitmer.

She added that if COVID spreads to the point where officials can no longer contact trace or isolate the disease, it might mean the state will have to take steps backward in terms of its economic engagement.

“That hurts every single one of us,” she said.

Initially there was a lot of speculation on whether Biden was going to choose Whitmer as his running mate. Now many are curious about whether there would be a cabinet position available for her on Biden’s administration.

In response to whether she would consider a cabinet position on Biden’s administration, Whitmer responded, “I have been very clear all along. I have no intention of leaving. I love being the governor of Michigan. I feel grateful for being here. I have a lot of work to do. I think I can be a great partner to a Biden-Harris administration from right here at home. I think they are going to be a great partner to Michigan.”


About the Author: