Michigan Republican gubernatorial candidate Tudor Dixon on Friday mocked his incumbent for being the target of a kidnapping plot that landed some organizers in federal prison.

More than a dozen men were arrested in 2020 for allegedly plotting to forcibly capture Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer (D), possibly to kill her.

Dixon tried to draw a parallel between the kidnapping scheme and Whitmer’s policies, which Dixon says are bad for Michigan business, but provided an awkward punchline.

“The sad thing is that Gretchen will tie your hands, put a gun to your head and ask if you’re ready to talk. For someone who’s very worried about being kidnapped, Gretchen Whitmer sure is. is good at taking businesses hostage and holding them for ransom,” Dixon said.

His comments drew applause from a crowd of about 300 at the American Polish Cultural Center in Troy, Michigan. According to the Detroit News.

Whitmer’s campaign responded with a statement emphasizing the magnitude of the conspiracy against him.

“Threats of violence — whether to Governor Whitmer or to candidates and elected officials on the other side of the aisle — are no laughing matter, and the fact that Tudor Dixon thinks it’s a joke shows that he is in public office. Totally unfit to serve,” it read.

Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel, a Democrat, said Dixon’s comments were “disgusting.”

“Anyone who would highlight such an effort is unfit to hold public office at any level,” Nessel wrote in a tweet.

But Dixon didn’t hold back, poking fun at Whitmer on a different show later Friday. He recalled the governor’s meeting with President Joe Biden at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit last week.

“The look on his face was like, ‘Oh, my God, this is happening. I’m going to get kidnapped by the FBI instead,'” Dixon said of Biden’s hand touching Whitmer’s. He said.

Dixon also repeated his first line for the Detroit crowd.

“Earlier today I said, ‘You know, Gretchen Whitmer, since she’s so worried about the kidnapping, she shouldn’t have held our business hostage.’ And they were like, ‘He made this joke about kidnapping,'” Dixon said. “And I’m like, no, it wasn’t a joke. If you’re afraid of that, you should know what it’s like to have your life taken away from you.

This was a clear reference to Whitmer’s handling of the pandemic.

Mayo Coyle, Whitmer’s communications director, responded to the increase on Friday.

Dixon supports eliminating the personal income tax and roughly cutting in half what her website calls “Michigan’s great regulatory code” to “unlock economic growth and attract new businesses and the workforce to the state.” to do”. Dixon would “rapidly create pro-growth policies and restore the state’s image as anti-business,” but her website doesn’t offer much detail.

He received an endorsement from former President Donald Trump this summer.

In October 2020, the FBI charged six people with federal crimes for conspiring to kidnap Whitmer, while several others were charged with state crimes.

The men were particularly angry about the precautions Whitmer had implemented to prevent the spread of COVID-19 in the early stages of the pandemic. One of them told an FBI informant that he needed 200 men to “storm” the state capitol to capture Whitmer and “treason” him in Wisconsin, according to an FBI affidavit. can put in the trial.

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