Detroit Metro Times

Michigan GOP Co-Chair Maddock spreads more lies about COVID-19

Steve Neavling Apr 28, 2021 10:58 AM
Brice Tucker
Michigan Republican Co-Chair Meshawn Maddock

Michigan Republican Party Co-Chair Meshawn Maddock, who peddled conspiracy theories about election fraud, is now spreading misinformation about COVID-19.

Maddock shared a tweet on Tuesday that falsely claims masks are ineffective and that people should sue their employers for requiring face coverings.

Never mind that Michigan leads the nation in daily COVID-19 cases and that an alarming number of young people in the state are being hospitalized with the virus.

The tweet stated, “Masks are Ineffective, Harmful (physically n mentally) and Never Intended for General Population Use.”

“Ppl need to start bring Legal Action against Employers,” the tweet added.

The message was tweeted by @fortgleason, who regularly pushes false information about COVID-19 in Michigan. Just hours after the Jan. 6 insurrection in Washington, D.C., the Twitter user stated, "Nobody said it would be Easy Draining the Swamp Elites from both Political Parties. This is what happens when you rattle the cage.”

Maddock has come under fire for whipping up unfounded fear that Democrats stole the election. Maddock helped promote and organize busloads of Michigan residents to travel to Washington, D.C., where she delivered a speech a day before the insurrection.

Maddock also helped organize Operation Gridlock, an anti-lockdown protest that intentionally jammed the streets in Lansing in April and inspired similar demonstrations nationwide, including a protest two weeks later that led to a heavily armed mob entering the state Capitol building.

Her husband, state Rep. Matt Maddock, falsely claimed on Facebook in October that “COVID is less lethal than the flu.”

The Maddocks co-founded the Michigan Conservative Coalition, an influential collection of right-wing organizations and pro-Trump groups aimed at recruiting and training an "army of conservative activists." On its website, the coalition claims "masks are dangerous to your health" and includes a link to a video that has since been removed from YouTube for containing misinformation about the virus.

In a radio interview in March, Michigan Senate Majority Leader Mike Shirkey falsely claimed there’s no evidence that COVID-19 restrictions are effective and defended Texas Gov. Greg Abbott’s decision to allow businesses to fully open and lift the state's face mask mandate.

In January, a University of Michigan study estimated that Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s COVID-19 restrictions saved 2,800 lives.

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