Michigan Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson says Democrats aren't doing enough to protect democracy

click to enlarge Michigan Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson joined MSNBC's The Mehdi Hasan Show. - Screengrab / MSNBC, The Mehdi Hasan Show
Screengrab / MSNBC, The Mehdi Hasan Show
Michigan Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson joined MSNBC's The Mehdi Hasan Show.

Seemingly every day, we learn new shocking details about how far Donald Trump's supporters will willing to go to overthrow the 2020 election. The U.S. House's investigation into the Jan. 6 insurrection has recently brought to light documents including a detailed PowerPoint presentation that circulated in the White House arguing to overturn the election, as well as a text message to Trump chief of staff Mark Meadows from an unnamed GOP lawmaker suggesting "AN AGGRESSIVE STRATEGY" for states to send their own electors to subvert the will of the voters. There are even texts to Meadows from typically Trump-friendly Fox News "journalists" fearing that Trump's supporters had gone too far.

On Wednesday, MSNBC host Mehdi Hasan called the tactics "chilling," and "fundamentally undemocratic" and "authoritarian." In the meantime, Trump supporters who were part of the Jan. 6 coup have run for office and are now overseeing local elections, have passed voter suppression legislation in 19 states and counting, and are redrawing district maps to give them an unfair advantage at the ballot box.

Despite this unfolding crisis, Democrats and Republicans in Congress have been seemingly unwilling to act on any sort of voter integrity reform.

Michigan Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson, who recently called the crisis a "five-alarm fire" in The New York Times, joined MSNBC's The Mehdi Hasan Show on Wednesday to discuss.

"This is the most important issue of our time," Benson said. "And the fact that those trying to undo our democracy are not hiding their tactics but are doing them in plain sight gives us an opportunity to hold them accountable, and we have to take that opportunity."

But when asked if state and national Democrats were doing enough to meet the moment, Benson said she believed they were not.

"No. I think if they were we would see results in action and changes," she said. "There has yet to be real accountability or any changes and protections put in place to avoid a reoccurrence of the threat. We barely survived in '20."'

She added, "We still have time to protect it, and we have to take advantage of the moment to do that."

One of the issues standing in the way is the filibuster in Congress, which requires a supermajority to pass legislation. Democrats and Republicans recently cut a deal to bypass the filibuster... but only to increase the debt ceiling.

"Joe Manchin and his many Republican friends across the aisle will presumably set aside the filibuster for a vote to save their stock portfolios, but letting the American democratic experiment end?" Hasan said. "Sorry, no can do!"

You can watch the clip below.

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Lee DeVito

Leyland “Lee” DeVito is the editor in chief of Detroit Metro Times since 2016. His writing has also been published in CREEM, VICE, In These Times, and New City. He once asked porn star Stormy Daniels to spank him with an issue of Metro Times. She obliged.

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