In a Tuesday Facebook Live video, Michigan State Rep. Cynthia Johnson (D – Detroit) warned President Donald Trump’s supporters to “be careful” and called on “soldiers” to “make them pay.” Johnson’s comments come after she received death threats following her participation in a Michigan state election hearing last week.
In the later part of her Facebook video, Johnson said, “So this is just a warning to you Trumpers. Be careful, walk lightly, we ain’t playing with you. Enough of the shenanigans. Enough is enough. And for those of you who are soldiers, you know how to do it. Do it right. Be in order. Make them pay.”
Johnson’s remarks to “Trumpers” begins at the 2:33 mark in the Facebook live video.
Earlier in the video, Johnson addressed threats she received in recent days.
“Don’t get upset with folks and start cussing them out and all that. It never works,” Johnson said. “I wish I could be talking to you all in a private room because, uh, I just wish I could. But we’re public, so be smart. You don’t have to yell. You don’t have to curse anybody out. You don’t have to call anybody names.”
In the video, Johnson goes on to say, “Hit their asses in the pocketbook. Hit them in the pocketbook. For instance, one of our bright citizens of our country, in Illinois, who happened to voicemail me, unknown, but guess what, FBI, state police, they found her.”
American Military News made repeated efforts to reach Johnson’s office by phone and email, but her office had not responded at the time this story was published.
Johnson reported receiving threats in recent days and in one Facebook post, she said she shared some of the threats she received with her fellow Michigan lawmakers.
In one threatening voicemail Johnson shared, a caller said, “How dare you bully witnesses on the stand,” appearing to reference a recent election hearing she participated in. The caller continued the call and said, “You’re name and phone number is out there now, you’re getting doxxed bitch, you’re done, so fucking done, you should be swinging from a fucking rope, you Democrats. You fucking Democrats, stealing the election, you deserve everything you fucking get.”
The caller then referred to Johnson by a racial epithet.
Wow! I shared this despicable voicemail message https://www.dropbox.com/s/0yec8…/Big%20lip%20nigger-672.m4a… with all my colleagues and this was the response from colleague Representative Mary Whiteford (R). When they tell you who they are, believe them. I dare you to listen to this message three times.”
Rep. Mary Whiteford wrote, “I don’t understand why you would share this with me and other representatives, Cynthia.”
Whiteford then criticized Johnson for asking a witness to spell her name out during the election hearing. According to the Detroit Free Press all speakers at public meetings are public record under the Michigan Open Meetings Act, and clerks often record people’s names for the public record.
Whiteford said, “By the way, I am shocked that you had that poor woman spell out her name during the hearing You put her life at risk! That is the most heartless action I have ever witnessed, using your power of position to shame someone who was in a very vulnerable position. I am praying for you to have compassion with those you disagree with.”
In a follow up public statement, Whiteford said:
“First and foremost, racism and violence have no place in our society and those who sent these horrifying messages to Representative Johnson should be held accountable. Rep. Johnson has posted some of these messages to her Facebook page and they are shocking, cruel and totally out of line. No one should be exposed to that type of behavior. I have been exposed to threats as well, including someone showing up at my house and coming onto my property unwelcomed.
In a professional manner, I felt it was necessary to make clear my displeasure for how the Representative treated witnesses who testified about election irregularities in Michigan during the November election. I believe Rep. Johnson’s conduct was belittling, offensive and meant to humiliate. By asking for one witness to spell her name and give her maiden name after she made serious allegations regarding our state’s elections process, I feel Rep. Johnson was attempting to intimidate. Names are often recorded by a clerk for public record and that information would have been readily available after the hearing for the Representative.
The people who testified before the House Oversight Committee were courageous to step forward with what they saw at places such as the TCF Center in Detroit. They put themselves out there in a high-profile setting. The hearing provided a platform for Michigan residents to share their experiences and generate ways to better Michigan’s elections in the future.
No one should be subjected to intimidation for sharing their opinions.”
The threats against Johnson and the threats Whiteford said she also experienced come after the FBI arrested several individuals involved in an alleged plot to kidnap Michigan’s Democrat Gov. Gretchen Whitmer.