Michigan GOP elects new leadership amid accusations of corruption

New Michigan GOP chair elected during Saturday’s virtual Michigan Republican Party 2021 Convention

Michigan GOP elects new leadership amid accusations of corruption
Michigan GOP elects new leadership amid accusations of corruption

DETROIT – The Michigan Republican Party elected its new Chair Saturday. that allegedly involved national GOP Party Chair Ronna McDaniel after Weiser allegedly called McDaniel. She is also mentioned in a similar pay-off scheme during her run for Michigan GOP Chair, also allegedly organized by Weiser. A spokesperson for McDaniel said any allegations she was involved in the alleged activity were “categorically false” and had no knowledge of any alleged pay-off during her run for state chair.

University of Michigan Board of Regents member Ronald Weiser was elected, defeating incumbent chair Laura Cox, who accused him of corruption.

READ: Laura Cox voted out as Michigan GOP chair, Ron Weiser elected for third term

The outcome of the internal election was expected, but the fighting that came just before the vote has already set the stage for possible investigations at the state level, and potentially the national level.

Michigan’s GOP elected the new leadership amid party infighting and accusations of illegal activity.

Weiser won the seat for the third time in his career alongside Meshawn Maddock as new co-chair. Both were embroiled in scandal before the election.

Weiser was accused of corruption in a pay-off scheme during his time as chair in 2018 and Maddock is under scrutiny for her role in chartering more than a dozen buses from Michigan to the deadly Jan. 6 insurrection.

In a statement after winning, Weiser said, “the skirmishes of yesterday are over. Our focus now rests on the great challenges before us: Rebuilding our party.”

But those skirmishes will hang over the party. On her way out, Cox released an internal investigation accusing Weiser of being part of at least two pay-off schemes. One involved an alleged $200,000 pay-off for a candidate to drop out of a race that allegedly involved national GOP Party Chair Ronna McDaniel after Weiser allegedly called McDaniel. She is also mentioned in a similar pay-off scheme during her run for Michigan GOP Chair, also allegedly organized by Weiser. A spokesperson for McDaniel said any allegations she was involved in the alleged activity were “categorially false” and had no knowledge of any alleged pay-off during her run for state chair.

The allegations have potential to have national impact.

Cox also reported the allegations to the state board, potentially opening the party and its finances to investigation from Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson and Attorney General Dana Nessel.

Weiser has denied the allegations made by Cox.

Benson said her office had received the claims, but has not decided if they will launch an investigation.


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.

Dane is a producer and media enthusiast. He previously worked freelance video production and writing jobs in Michigan, Georgia and Massachusetts. Dane graduated from the Specs Howard School of Media Arts.