Trump Accuses Whitmer Of Wanting To Be ‘Dictator’ After Alleged Plot Against Her

LANSING, MICHIGAN - May 18, 2020: Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer at the Romney Building where her office is located in Lansing, Mich., on May 18, 2020. (Brittany Greeson for The Washington Post via Getty Images)
October 15, 2020 11:28 a.m.

President Trump kept up his attacks against Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer (D) on Thursday morning by nonsensically accusing her of wanting to be a “dictator” a week after the FBI thwarted an alleged militia plot to kidnap her.

Appearing on Fox Business Network on Thursday morning, Trump — who has returned to the campaign trail this week following his brief hospitalization at Walter Reed for coronavirus treatment — rehashed his call to “open up the states” as the country tops over 250,000 COVID-19 fatalities.

The President then turned his focus to railing against Whitmer, who was targeted in an alleged militia kidnapping plot, by accusing her of wanting to be a “dictator.”

“Michigan, she has to open up. She wants to be a dictator in Michigan,” Trump said. “The people can’t stand her. And they want to get back and want to get back to work and so Michigan we won.”

Get TPM in your inbox, twice weekly.
Your subscription could not be saved. Please try again.
Your subscription has been successful.

Trump said that states such as Pennsylvania and North Carolina have to “open up,” and boasted that they will the day after the November election.

“They got to open them up. They will open them up on November 4th. They’re only doing it for politics,” Trump said, before predicting a “great third quarter” despite coronavirus-related restrictions.

Trump’s Fox Business Network interview is a continuation of his attacks against Whitmer, who has rose to prominence as a vocal critic of the President, after the FBI announced last week that it had thwarted an alleged right-wing conspiracy to kidnap and possibly kill her.

Last week, Trump tweeted that Whitmer “has done a terrible job” with her emergency restrictions amid the COVID-19 pandemic, which allegedly infuriated the 13 charged suspects in the state and federal case.

The President’s attack toward Whitmer last week came on the heels of the Michigan governor tying his rhetoric to the alleged plot to kidnap her.

“Hate groups heard the President’s words not as a rebuke but as a rallying cry, as a call to action,” Whitmer said, in her first remarks about the alleged kidnapping plot.

Whitmer went after Trump for refusing to condemn white supremacists during the first presidential debate last month.

“When our leaders speak, their words matter, they carry weight,” Whitmer said last week. “When our leaders meet with, encourage or fraternize with domestic terrorists, they legitimize their actions and they are complicit. When they stoke and contribute to hate speech, they are complicit.”

Watch Trump’s remarks below:

Latest News
Masthead Masthead
Founder & Editor-in-Chief:
Executive Editor:
Managing Editor:
Associate Editor:
Investigations Desk:
Senior Editor for Content Strategy and Audience Development:
Editor at Large:
General Counsel:
Head of Product:
Director of Technology:
Associate Publisher:
Front End Developer:
Senior Designer: