Canton Township rejects former state senator’s demand for information on election machines

‘This would be like the largest chink of the armor just removed from the security of the system if this were to go out’

A local township says "No" to a conspiracy theorist's request for sensitive information straight from the election machines. Former state senator Patrick Colbeck wanted Canton Township to give him critical election data from 2020. The answer was "No way." The attendance clerk called it a blueprint to hack the next election.

CANTON TOWNSHIP, Mich. – A local township says “No” to a conspiracy theorist’s request for sensitive information straight from the election machines.

Former state senator Patrick Colbeck wanted Canton Township to give him critical election data from 2020.

The answer was “No way.” The attendance clerk called it a blueprint to hack the next election.

Colbeck is no stranger to those claims, as he even wrote a book falsely claiming the 2020 election was stolen, but this is the latest instance of someone who says they’re for election security asking for something that would actually weaken that security.

According to memos first obtained by the Detroit News, Colbeck asked Canton officials for files installed on election machines and the election system central to running a fair election.

His request was denied as city clerk Michael Siegrist said if that data were to fall into the hands of an election denier like Colbeck, actual harm could be done.

“This would be like the largest chink of the armor just removed from the security of the system if this were to go out,” said Siegrist.

In a statement, Colbeck cited a case out of Colorado alleging votes had been manipulated, saying, “The results were likely the result of a custom script or database swap. The information requested is not protected under the dominion contract with the State of Michigan as asserted by those attempting to block access to this information.”

Friday (Aug. 26) afternoon, Siegrist had a message directly for the former state senator.

“An open records request can be made to come in and visually inspect the ballots,” Siegrist said. “Look at them with the totals unless you want to accuse 300 Canton residents, Democrats, Republicans, Libertarians, Green Party members, U.S. Taxpayer party members of all colluding with each other in one massive conspiracy, but I think canton residents are a little too smart for that.”

It’s important to note that that county’s district attorney debunked the case from Colorado that Colbeck cited, and the clerk involved, along with several others, has been arrested for tampering with those machines herself.


About the Authors:

Grant comes to Local 4 from Oklahoma City. He joins the news team as co-anchor of Local 4 News Today weekend mornings and is a general assignment reporter.

Brandon Carr is a digital content producer for ClickOnDetroit and has been with WDIV Local 4 since November 2021. Brandon is the 2015 Solomon Kinloch Humanitarian award recipient for Community Service.