Once The Mainstream Model, Michigan GOP Embraces Right Wing

FILE - In this Nov. 6, 2020, file photo, the phrase "Count Every Vote" is displayed on a large screen, organized by an advocacy group in front of thesState Capitol while election results in several states had yet to be finalized, in Lansing, Mich. (AP Photo/David Goldman, File)

(AP) — Michigan Republicans, once the national model for the party’s mainstream, have lurched sharply rightward in the past decade. The party once defined by Gerald Ford and George Romney has elevated the state’s most vocal defender of Donald Trump’s debunked claims of 2020 voter fraud to the state GOP’s leadership, while the state Senate’s GOP leader has met with and encouraged right-wing militia after they brandished rifles in the state Capitol last spring. Decades in the making, and punctuated loudly by Trump’s 2016 win, Michigan’s drift from the GOP’s center has prompted departures from traditional conservatives and retribution against moderates.


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