On Fox News Thursday night, President Donald Trump criticized Governor Gretchen Whitmer for saying his rhetoric makes him “complicit” with those accused of plotting to kidnap the governor.
“You know I see Whitmer today she’s complaining but it was our Justice Department that arrested the people that she was complaining about. It was my Justice Department that arrested them.”
In a press conference Thursday, Whitmer said, “Our head of state has spent the past seven months denying science, ignoring his own health experts, stoking distrust, fomenting anger and giving comfort to those who spread fear and hatred and division.”
In April, Trump tweeted in support of liberating Michigan.
He doubled down his criticism again Thursday on Twitter, accusing Whitmer of doing a "terrible job," calling on her to "open up your state, open up your schools, and open up your churches."
...I do not tolerate ANY extreme violence. Defending ALL Americans, even those who oppose and attack me, is what I will always do as your President! Governor Whitmer—open up your state, open up your schools, and open up your churches!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) October 9, 2020
Churches have been open in Michigan since May, and many schools returned to face-to-face learning in the fall. Others chose a hybrid or online method.
Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden called the the alleged plot..."heinous." Biden accused the president of "giving oxygen to the bigotry and hate."