Whitmer’s Florida Scandal Saga Whitmer's Florida Scandal Saga - Michigan Rising Action

Whitmer’s Florida Scandal Saga

Whitmer’s Florida Scandal Saga

July 28, 2021

Governor Gretchen Whitmer is facing a major campaign finance violation for her secret trip to Florida during the pandemic, but we must not forget how we got here. Let’s take a trip down memory lane…

In April of 2021, It is revealed that Governor Whitmer traveled to Florida in secret in March of 2021. The Detroit News reported

“Gov. Gretchen Whitmer traveled out of state earlier this year…

The acknowledgment came after spring break trips made by two members of Whitmer’s administration drew criticism amid surging COVID-19 infections and hospitalizations in the state.” 

This revelation came after Whitmer advised Michiganders to stay home, and specifically, to not travel to Florida. Bridge Magazine reported:

“Whitmer’s health department has recommended against travel on multiple occasions, including during the December holiday season, and most recently, during the latest COVID-19 surge.

A revised travel guidance, released by the state health department on April 5,  suggested Michigan residents “delay travel and stay home to protect yourself and others from COVID-19.’”

Michiganders were left with many questions, but Whitmer refused to answer. The AP reported:

“Whitmer has repeatedly refused to give details about the trip, including when and where she went, how she got there and how she paid for it, citing security reasons. She has only said that taxpayer money was not used to pay for it, that it lasted ‘two full days or less’ and that she went more than a month before April 19, when news of the trip leaked.”

But things would soon get much worse for Governor Whitmer, when it was revealed she violated the law by having this personal expense paid for by a nonprofit. Now, she faced an IRS investigation. The Detroit News reported

“A conservative group filed a complaint Wednesday with the Internal Revenue Service, arguing that a nonprofit organization improperly funded the flights Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer took to visit her father in Florida.

The new filing by Eric Ventimiglia, executive director of Michigan Rising Action, says the governor’s trip on a private plane in March fell outside the tax-exempt purpose of the social welfare organization Michigan Transition 2019.”

In a calculated move, Whitmer went judge shopping and found her political ally, Michigan Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson, who handles campaign finance violations in the state, a preferable alternative to multiple federal investigations. The Detroit News reported:

“Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s candidate committee will now pay for her March flight to Florida to visit her father after the company that co-owns the jet said it could not accept payment from a social welfare nonprofit…

The change in source for the flight payment comes after the conservative group Michigan Rising acting filed a complaint with the Internal Revenue Service over the use of Michigan Transition 2019.”

Unfortunately for Whitmer, Michigan Rising Action is committed to holding her accountable, which is why we filed a campaign finance complaint with the Michigan Bureau of Elections.

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