Congressman pens letter quitting GOP over ‘long term harm to democracy’

Rep. Paul Mitchell was frustrated that Republicans were supporting 'Stop the Steal' efforts to overturn the election results

Rep. Paul Mitchell has quit the Republican party via a letter in which he claims the GOP was inflicting long term harm on democracy.

The letter was written to Republican National Committee chairwoman Ronna McDaniel and House Republican leader Kevin McCarthy on Monday. The Michigan representative will now be an Independent for his remaining time in office as he no longer believes his values aligned with the Republican party.

Mitchell, who has been in office since 2017, touted his support for President Donald Trump 95% of the time he’s been in Congress. He voted for four more years of his leadership despite “reservations” over him in the recent election.

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“I felt that many policies achieved during the Trump administration had been positive for our nation, whereas the policies espoused by the Democratic Party were too radical and did not reflect my principles,” Mitchell wrote.

He referenced all the funds he’s raised for the GOP, including $800K for Republican candidates as a measure of his loyalty. However, he can no longer support Trump’s claims that the election was stolen from him without any substantial proof.

“I agree that there have been some disconcerting aspects to this election. With more than 155 million people voting, both administrative errors and even some fraudulent voting likely occurred. Steps must be taken, by each state, to audit election results, validate ballots and process and report findings to ensure that every legal vote counts,” he wrote.

“Michigan clearly needs to do that, not just Wayne County. However, the president and his legal team have failed to provide substantive evidence of fraud or administrative failure on a scale large enough to impact the outcome of the election.”

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Mitchell said that Trump lost Michigan in 2020 by 154,000 votes in comparison to the 10,700 votes he won the battleground states four years earlier. He has now become frustrated by the president’s inability to accept his loss. President-elect Joe Biden was declared the winner with 50.6% of the vote.

Rep. Paul Mitchell Congressman
(Credit: Congressman Paul Mitchell)

“It is unacceptable for political candidates to treat our election system as though we are a third-world nation and incite distrust of something so basic as the sanctity of our vote. Further, it is unacceptable for the president to attack the Supreme Court of the United States because its judges, both liberal and conservative, did not rule with his side or that “the Court failed him.” It was our Founding Fathers’ objective to insulate the Supreme Court from such blatant political motivations.”

Mitchell believes the Republicans have a duty to speak out against Trump’s allegations of voter fraud as a collective. Thus far, Mitchell is dismayed that he is one of a few lone voices who have forcefully condemned the attack on the election. He also previously admonished Trump for his comments about Charlottesville where he equated Nazis and protesters as having “very fine people on both sides.’

“I believe that raw political considerations, not constitutional or voting integrity concerns, motivate many in party leadership to support the “stop the steal” efforts, which is extremely disappointing to me. As elected members of Congress, we take an oath to “support and defend the Constitution of the United States,” not to preserve and protect the political interests of any individual, be it the president or anyone else, to the detriment of our cherished nation.”

Mitchell fears not just for the future of the Republican party, but for the country.

“However, with the leadership of the Republican Party and our Republican Conference in the House actively participating in at least some of those efforts, I fear long-term harm to our democracy,” he wrote.

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