Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer, who is facing a possible upcoming impeachment trial by her state legislature, has been nominated for TIME Magazine's annual Person of the Year designation, WZZM13 reports.
She joins Donald Trump, Joe Biden, Dr. Anthony Fauci, Black Lives Matter activists, and various others with her nomination for the 2020 accolade. President Trump was previously chosen as Person of the Year in 2016 after his upset victory against Hillary Clinton. The 2019 designation was awarded to the environmentalist Greta Thunberg. TIME Magazine nominates a group of "people who had the greatest influence on the events of the year—for better or worse" and picks one person or group each year.
While the nomination may come as a pleasant surprise for Whitmer, she nevertheless continues to face potential impeachment in her home state of Michigan. State Republicans are seeking to impeach her under the accusation that she "exceeded her constitutional authority" with coronavirus pandemic-related shutdowns.
The articles of impeachment were introduced by GOP state representative Beau M. LaFave.
"Whereas, in responding to the COVID-19 pandemic, Gretchen E. Whitmer has acted in conflict with her constitutional duties as Governor. She has exceeded her constitutional authority, violated the constitutional rights of the people of Michigan, issued orders that are not in the best interests of the people of this state, and used the Pandemic as an opportunity to reward political allies. These actions are a matter of public record, primarily in the form of executive orders and the enforcement thereof; now, therefore, be it resolved by the House of Representatives, that Gretchen E. Whitmer, Governor of the state of Michigan, is impeached for corrupt conduct in office and for crimes and misdemeanors," the articles of impeachment reads.
Another Michigan state Representative, Matt Maddock, said he is supporting impeachment. Listing off Whitmer's alleged wrongdoings, Maddock said that the governor “ignored court orders. Violated our Constitutional rights. Completely ignored due process and the legislature. Weaponized contract tracing databases to aid democrat campaigns.”
The Board of Commissioners of Kalkaska County, a county in northern Michigan, recently voted in favour of impeaching Whitmer, requiring the legislature to consider the articles of impeachment.
The state House cannot go forward with the proceedings until December 1st when Michigan's legislature reconvenes. While Republicans maintain a majority in the state's House of Representatives, the state GOP remains four seats short of a supermajority in the Senate required to impeach a sitting governor, calling into question whether they can remove Whitmer from office.
It is also unclear if all Republicans will support impeaching Whitmer. Michigan House Speaker Lee Chatfield expressed concern over the impeachment proceedings by comparing it to the Democrat's campaign to impeach President Trump. "We’re not the party that impeaches someone because we’re upset with policies that they’ve enacted," Chatfield said.
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