After weeks of investigations produced significant evidence of election irregularities, Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson refused to testify before the House Oversight Committee, further cementing our election’s lack of transparency.

In a letter issued Tuesday, Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson said she refused to testify before the House Oversight Committee, which has been investigating the rampant election irregularities that took place during the November 2020 election.  Benson said in a letter to House Oversight Committee Chairman Matt Hall that the hearings are “amplifying already debunked conspiracy theories and previously disproven claims of people who lack basic knowledge of election administration, and in doing so undermining the integrity of the election and wounding our democracy.”'

Read Secretary Benson's letter here. 

Benson noted that Attorney General William Barr, the FBI, the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA), and countless local election clerks on both sides of the aisle, as well as judges and justices appointed by Republicans and Democrats, have found the election was secure and the results are accurate.

63rd District State Representative Hall, of Marshall, said, “Secretary of State Benson said she would be willing to testify before the people’s representatives when it made a good talking point for her and got her good press. But when the rubber met the road and it came time to answer questions about her work, she refused to take questions. Benson’s flip-flop makes it clear she would rather hide under a rock than help the people of Michigan build trust in their state’s election process going forward.”

“Jocelyn Benson has proven yet again that she is incapable of putting aside her partisanship in order to do her job and answer for the unacceptable levels of election irregularities experienced this November,” said Michigan Republican Party Chairman Laura Cox. Cox continued, “Benson’s testimony is a vital piece of evidence in these investigations, and her attempts to sidestep this responsibility is another example of her disregard for the people’s elected representatives. I call on Secretary Benson to reverse course and give the people of Michigan the election transparency they deserve.”

Hall says his motives are to get answers to questions that are on the minds of Michigan voters.  “This is about people, not politics. The electoral votes for Michigan have been submitted. But people in Michigan still have questions about their state’s elections and those questions deserve answers. I fear we are headed for more distrust in the future if people are denied clarity and transparency from officials who head up the process.”

Hall says legislators are hearing voter concerns and are taking action to address them. “But this needs to be a collaborative effort to deliver trust,” said Hall. “The House and Senate Oversight Committees have previously heard testimony from multiple county clerks from both parties on what they saw and what can be done to better Michigan’s election system in the future – and those conversations and ideas were extremely constructive and helpful.  Our committee would like to have similar discussions with Secretary of State Benson, and I am disappointed she is brushing aside that opportunity while making excuses and playing cheap political games."

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