'Dangerous to democracy:' 3 Republican nominees spark alarms beyond Michigan

August 30, 2022, 9:58 AM

Now that they're officially nominated, Tudor Dixon, Matt DePerno and Kristina Karamo draw wider national attention for views seen as "dangerous to our constitutional democracy."

Kristina Karamo, Tudor Dixon and Matt DePerno were nominated Saturday. (Campaign photos)

That phrase is used today by blogger Matthew J. Dowd, a past ABC News political analyst who was chief strategist for the 2004 Republican ticket of George W. Bush and Dick Cheney. He lists gubernatorial candidate Dixon, attorney general challenger DePerno and secretary of state hopeful Karamo among the "top ten candidates who threaten our democracy."

Separately, Politico includes Karamo among secretary of state nomninees who provoke "concerns about whether they would fairly administer the 2024 presidential election" if they win Nov. 8.

She wants to "roll back access to mail voting" and is one of "four Republicans on the ballot in major battlegrounds this fall [who] have banded together in what they call the America First Secretary of State Coalition," Zach Montellaro posts Monday at the high-profile news site.

Atop the list of the most disruptive things they could do is refusing to certify accurate election results — a nearly unprecedented step that would set off litigation in state and federal court. ... But secretaries of states' roles in elections stretch far beyond approving vote tallies and certifying results. Many of the candidates want to dramatically change the rules for future elections, too. ...

Donald Trump-aligned Republican nominees in a number of presidential battleground states have advocated for sweeping changes to election law, with a particular focus on targeting absentee and mail voting in their states — keying off one of Trump's obsessions. And even if they cannot push through major changes to state law using allies in the legislatures, they could still complicate and frustrate elections through the regulatory directives that guide the day-to-day execution of election procedures by county officials.

In his Tuesday post at Medium, Dowd -- who was born in Detroit -- cites the Michiganian Republicans as three of the "election denying, crazy conspiracy spewing anti-democratic candidates" nominated for 10 top state offices. He tells why:

Dixon has spread conspiracy theories and is a threat to the will of the people in this swing state. ...

Charged with enforcing the laws of the swing state of Michigan, DePerno has already demonstrated his antipathy for both the U.S. and Michigan Constitutions while saying some of the most outrageous falsehoods. While incumbent Dana Nessel has a decent lead, she has at times been polarizing in her statements and actions and there is a window for a DePerno victory. ...

On the daft test, Karamo is far and away number one, and she is high in the ranking on danger to democracy if she were to pull off this race

Politico adds this context in its post about secretary of state races:

Election deniers running state offices could also look to overhaul staff in state elections departments, even in positions where staffers are civil servants with broader protections from being fired from their jobs. Experienced election officials predicted that staff would look to leave the office rather than work for someone who did not believe in free elections, in addition to staffers being pressured to leave or just moved to somewhere else in the government.

"If a secretary wanted a new [elections] director, they could figure out how to do that," said Christopher Thomas, a fellow at the Bipartisan Policy Center who served as Michigan election director for secretaries of state of both parties. "I haven't seen a civil service process yet that you can’t work around."

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