GOP anti-democracy disruptors banged on the doors and blocked the entrance to the vote-counting center in Detroit, Michigan, pretending to be "vote-challengers."
November 4, 2020

Today's episode of "Everything Old Is New Again" will feature a poorly dressed redux of the Brooks Brothers Riot from 2000.

I'm having trouble finding a suit among the crowd, but just like in 2000, when George W. sent out the call for his peeps to storm the recount in Florida to shut it down, a bunch of GOP thugs answered the dogwhistle of their party leaders to shut down vote counting in Detroit, Michigan, because CHEATERS and RACISTS.

Nicolle Wallace spoke to Heidi Przybyla, who was at the voting center in Michigan where this happened, and noted that the state had already been projected to go to Joe Biden, yet Trump was still planning to file a lawsuit to stop the counting. Those remaining votes were expected to "tilt heavily" towards Biden, so nothing about the race would have changed, except perhaps the level of Trump's humiliation. Przybyla spoke to Jordan Acker, one of the Michigan Democratic Party's official poll challengers, about what happened during the chaos.

ACKER: So, We came back from lunch, today, Heidi, and ultimately, they wouldn't even let us in the building at first. Eventually we came in, and it seemed like someone put out the call from the Republican side to have everybody, mostly non-lawyers, converge at the TCF Center here in Detroit, in order to stop what is a normally a very orderly, well-run, professional process of counting absentee votes here in the city of Detroit.

PRZYBYLA: You said they stormed the room, or the escalator? How exactly did that happen?

ACKER: So, at first they converged all over the building. Maybe about a half hour, 40 minutes later probably two dozen came down the escalator in some sort of coordinated effort. They had on lanyards with the "MIGOP" on it, chanting, as they are right now, "Stop the count," banging on the doors, trying to get the election officials to stop even when the city attorney came out and said, "Here's why we're doing this. We have one challenger per precinct. It's what the parties agree on." That's what's in there, that's what we saw all morning. Ultimately they still tried to stop Detroiters from having their right to have their vote heard.

Pryzbyla asked if the collective GOP tantrum had any impact on their ability to count the ballots, and the short answer was, thankfully, no, thanks to the professionalism of the people inside, the police on the outside, and officials from both parties who continued on with their task.

She did take pains to emphasize, rightly, that this whole episode was orchestrated by the Michigan GOP from start to finish:

PRZYBYLA: Nicolle, this cannot be said enough. This entire process was entirely predictable and actually created by the GOP legislature here in Michigan, which declined to give extra time for the pre-canvassing that would have been necessary to actually complete the count on election night.

It's almost as if the party that forced the need for exponentially increased early voting, yet simultaneously refused to allow extra time needed to count those huge number of early votes, might not be operating in good faith.

Speaking of good faith, though, the fitting and accurate last word will go to this very wise chaplain outside the TCF Center:

And let's not forget who engineers these stupid displays of thuggery:

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