By Jessica Mathews /

Local lawmakers are speaking out against proposed acts of domestic terrorism against Governor Gretchen Whitmer.

Republican State Representatives Hank Vaupel of Fowlerville and Ann Bollin of Brighton Township issued statements Tuesday - the same day a federal judge ordered three of the five Michigan men accused of plotting to kidnap Whitmer to be held without bond before trial. Two others were moved out to Friday, including 24-year-old Ty Garbin of Hartland Township.

Vaupel said “The plot being made by this dangerous and hateful group was despicable. Violence and acts of hate are unacceptable in our society. No matter how much anyone disagrees with a government official, this response is unwarranted and those responsible should be persecuted to the highest extent of the law. Though I don’t always agree with the governor politically, I have nothing but respect for her and wish her peace in the wake of this truly scary event. No one deserves to be put in this position of fear. Her family remains in my continued prayers.” Vaupel said he’s frustrated along with many others but you don’t arm yourself, threaten to take hostages and kidnap governor over it – it’s just wrong in every possible respect.

Representative Bollin issued the following statement: “It should go without saying that violence and acts of hate have no place in government and politics or society as a whole. I’m appalled to think of the horrifying plot against our governor and her family, and what could have happened if this hateful and disgusting plan had not been uncovered by our brave men and women in law enforcement. Make no mistake, this was not political discourse. It is un-American extremism that has no place in our society, and the people involved should be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law. Most importantly, I am thankful that Gov. Whitmer and her family are safe. While we may not agree on everything politically, I respect the commitment and sacrifices she has made to lead our state.”

Republican State Senator Lana Theis of Brighton Township issued a statement last Thursday condemning the group’s actions: “There is absolutely no place for violence in American politics, even when we hold different political beliefs. A threat against the governor, or any elected official, is a threat against us all, and I strongly condemn the actions of the group of individuals who plotted against Gov. Whitmer and our state government. These people are accused of serious crimes, and if found guilty they should be prosecuted to the full extent of the law. Only terrorists and those who want to upend the Constitution resort to violence, and we will not stand for it. I am extremely thankful to all our law enforcement agencies for their quick action to stop this extremely disturbing and dangerous plot, and I extend my prayers to the governor and her family for their continued safety.”

Meanwhile, Garbin’s hearing was moved out to Friday. His home in the Hartland Meadows manufactured home community was raided by an FBI team last Wednesday as part of a series of raids across the state following an undercover investigation using confidential sources and clandestine recordings to foil the alleged kidnapping conspiracy. Some defendants, including Garbin, are alleged to have conducted coordinated surveillance of the Democratic governor’s vacation home in northern Michigan in August and September and openly discussed killing her as retaliation for what they called her “uncontrolled power” amid the coronavirus pandemic.