On May 16, the day of the 2012 election filing deadline, then-Democratic State Rep. Roy Schmidt announced he was switching parties to run as a Republican, and an unknown amateur bodybuilder named Matt Mojzak filed to run as a Democrat. Bolger and Schmidt planted the fake Democrat on the ballot to rig Schmidt’s election by denying Democrats an opportunity to nominate a new candidate.
What seemed like a perfect plan started to crumble the following day.
Here are the top five biggest lies from news stories that were published on May 17, 2012:
- What Bolger said: “This was not done out of political expediency or convenience. He was disenfranchised by the politics of the Democratic party.” What really happened: Bolger and Schmidt met over Bud Lights and Schuler cheese to hatch a scheme that would inflict maximum political damage on Democrats by announcing Schmidt’s party change on filing day.
- What Bolger said: “He didn’t ask for anything. There were no commitments made.” What really happened: Rep. Lisa Posthumus Lyons requested special police protection for Schmidt, paid for at taxpayer expense.
- What Schmidt said: “I’ve never met him,” Schmidt said of Mojzak. What really happened: Surveillance video footage clearly showed Mojzak meeting in person with Schmidt on the day he changed his voter registration form.
- What Schmidt said: “I believe I was sent to Lansing to serve the people of Grand Rapids, not political bosses.” What really happened: Attorney General Bill Schuette sent a text message to Schmidt on the day his party change was announced, saying, “Roy. Bill Schuette here. Call when you can (phone number redacted). Thanks.” According to Schuette’s spokesman, Schuette “was reaching out to Rep. Schmidt to welcome him to the GOP and to introduce himself.”
- What Bolger said: “We would not have beaten Roy Schmidt. He was going to win,” Bolger said. What really happened: After the scheme fell apart and Mojzak withdrew from the ballot, Democrats nominated Winnie Brinks, who went on to defeat Schmidt by 25 points in November.
As a reminder, Speaker Jase Bolger is still under an active grand jury investigation for his role in planning the Roy Schmidt election fraud scheme.
You can sign our petition telling Bolger to resign as Speaker here.