Pillow Guy and Rudy Giuliani made it out to the Michigan GOP endorsement convention on Saturday when 2,000 delegates gathered to decide who they wanted to run against Democrats AG Dana Nessel and SOS Jocelyn Benson.
At DeVos Place in Grand Rapids, candidates and their races were displayed on large screens in the convention hall, but the order of the races didn’t match the order on the ballots, spurring confusion and chaos. To make matters worse, the paper ballots didn’t include names of the “canidates” (sp), they only said “Candidate A” and “Candidate B” leaving voters to have to look at the screen to correlate the names.
Several voters had to spoil their ballots but there weren’t enough extra ballots to toss the ballots and start the second round of voting over, per a person familiar with the situation.
Beau LaFave, a candidate for secretary of state who lost in the first round of voting, called the situation a “voting fiasco.” Some delegates may have left without realizing they voted differently than they intended, he said.
LaFave said he’s “never seen a convention run this poorly.”
A party spokesperson called it a case of “human error,” ironically the same statements made about irregularities in Antrim County, where candidate DePerno has filed unsuccessful lawsuits and is a basis of claims of election fraud and the necessity for a forensic audit.
There was criticism from the former Mi-GOP chair Laura Cox who was run out by the the Maddocks, bigly pro-insurrectionists and Trump supporters.
Trump candidates Matt DePerno and Kristina Karamo ultimately “won” the endorsement. Karamo won the Secretary of State endorsement with 67% of the votes. DePerno’s endorsement for Attorney General required a second round of voting when he only received 49% of the votes in a three-way race — 50% required. The runners up were denied an opportunity to speak again from the stage to unite against DePerno.
DePerno won the run-off election with 55 percent of the vote, a victory at least partially attributable to his campaign compelling activists to “storm” county conventions and become alternate state convention alternates, many of whom were able to vote Saturday in place of delegates who did not show up or left before the run-off.
“There’s a good chance” DePerno could lose his law license or face criminal charges before then, said one of the failing AG candidates.
Former state Rep. Aaron Miller, who chaired the House Elections Committee, said he personally did not plan to vote for DePerno or Karamo in the general election because of their ongoing claims about the 2020 contest.