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Michigan: Election Worker Charged with Equipment Tampering

    Michigan: Election Worker Charged with Equipment Tampering
    Last updated: 2 months ago
    Image credit: Getty Images [via NBC News]

    Facts

    • James Holkeboer, a Republican-affiliated election worker in Kent County, Mich., has been charged with using a computer to commit a crime and falsifying records after witnesses alleged he placed a USB drive into an electronic poll book during the Aug. 2 primary. [1]
    • The county's clerk, Lisa Posthumus Lyons, said Holkeboer wasn't a government employee, adding that the alleged breach didn't impact the primary as the files were already saved to the precinct's encrypted system. He faces up to nine years if convicted. [2]
    • The poll book, which contains confidential voter registration data barred from release under Michigan law, is what's used to administer an election. Lyons also said it's not connected to any tabulation equipment or the internet. [3]
    • According to a spokesperson for the Michigan Sec. of State, the allegedly breached equipment has been decommissioned and won't be used in the November general election. [4]
    • This comes as the state's Attorney General Dana Nessel recently opened an investigation following the 2020 election that saw highly controversial claims of electoral fraud spread, especially in swing states like Michigan. [4]
    • Last month, Nessel recused herself and appointed a special prosecutor to oversee the probe after her Republican opponent, Matt DePerno, became a possible suspect. [4]
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    Spin

    Democratic narrative

    This latest development isn't a good look for the GOP, who were the very ones who peddled Trump's baseless and false claims of election fraud, and now, ironically, have seemingly been caught red-handed tampering in a poll. The charges against Holkeboer prove that those who violate Michigan's election laws will be caught and held accountable; meddlers beware.

    Republican narrative

    While this incident is certainly alarming and unacceptable, Holkeboer is one individual — who at this point has only been charged, not convicted — and doesn't represent an entire group of people. Lyons, a Republican herself, has been quick to condemn the alleged tampering and called for an aggressive investigation, which should be allowed to play out before jumping to conclusions.

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