July 8, 2021, Progress Michigan released the latest
edition of Lake Effect, a monthly research
newsletter that tracks public opinion about a variety of issues
and public officials.
“Voters are demanding answers about the recent rise of
right-wing extremists and militia groups in Michigan, as well as
their ties to the insurrection that took place at the U.S.
Capitol on January 6,” said Lonnie Scott, executive director
of Progress Michigan. “Meanwhile, Michiganders are looking
ahead and expressing their support for President Biden’s
infrastructure plan, which would help our state not only recover
after these tough times, but also build a brighter future for
our state. It’s past time for Michigan Republicans to leave 2020
behind, stop attacking our voting rights, and get to work on
policies that will actually benefit the people.”
Some key takeaways include:
of respondents support an investigation into ties between
Michigan lawmakers, right-wing militia groups, and the
January 6 insurrection. Only 25 percent oppose such an
of those polled say they’d be less likely to support
candidates who have spread false narratives about widespread
voter fraud in 2020, compared to 23 percent who would be
more likely to support such a candidate and 22 percent who
say it makes no difference.
of respondents say they’re less likely to support anti-voter
bills that make voting more difficult in light of the Senate
Elections Committee report that found the 2020 election was
secure and accurate. 27 percent say the report makes them
more likely to support the bills, while 26 percent say it
makes no difference.
of those polled say video footage of gubernatorial candidate
Ryan Kelley allegedly at the January 6 insurrection makes
them less likely to support him, compared to 15 percent who
are more likely to support him and 19 percent who say it
doesn’t make a difference.
of respondents support President Biden’s infrastructure
plan, while just 34 percent oppose the plan and 14 percent
say they’re not sure.
The Big Lie Persists in the GOP Base
Republican legislators’ efforts to distance
themselves may be too little, too late
A new report compiled by Progress Michigan analyzes
social media posts from local Republican parties across the
state to illustrate just how prevalent the Big Lie remains in
the Michigan Republican Party. Despite efforts by state
legislators and other prominent Republican officials to distance
themselves from the conspiracy theories they helped amplify
earlier this year, it may be too late for them to contain the
rot and corruption that has taken hold of the GOP
“After more than six months of bogus election hearings and
efforts to amplify conspiracy theories, Republican lawmakers
like Ed McBroom and Mike Shirkey are now trying to distance
themselves from the Big Lie,” said Sam Inglot, deputy
director of Progress Michigan. “But as this report
shows, their tepid attempts to undo the damage the Big Lie has
done to their party come too late to contain the spread of
racist and undemocratic conspiracy theories in their base.
Republican lawmakers and high-level officials have had countless
chances to push back against the lies perpetuated by Trump and
his allies and the violence that has resulted—but instead, they
helped the disinformation spread. GOP leaders opened Pandora’s
box last November, and they have only themselves to blame for
the effect the Big Lie has had on their party.”
Some highlights include:
of county Republican Party Facebook pages have alluded to a
“stolen” election, massive voter fraud, or the need for an
election audit since November 3.
of active county Republican Party Facebook pages—those that
tend to post on at least a weekly basis—have made posts
alluding to the Big Lie.
surrounding the Big Lie isn’t limited to social media posts,
as much of the content in the report includes calls for
supporters of the Big Lie to participate in real-life