As Backlash of Kevin Rinke’s “Flat-Out False” Voter Fraud Ad Continues, Out-of-Touch Millionaire is Now Claiming His Election Conspiracy Theories Were “A Joke”

Earlier this month, used Toyota salesman Kevin Rinke threw his millions behind a “flat-out false” TV ad to push completely unfounded conspiracy theories about the electoral process in order to justify his wrong-for-Michigan agenda that would restrict voting for Michiganders. Now he’s claiming the lies he broadcasted about dead voters being used to influence elections were “a joke” following an avalanche of definitive fact checks published by several outlets including the Detroit Free Press, CNN, FactCheck.org, Politifact, and WLNS 6

In fact, the lies in Rinke’s ad resulted in the local news station issuing yet another fact check and reporting that they “have gotten stacks of viewer emails and phone calls with concerns.”

WATCH the segment here and read the excerpts at the bottom:

MDP spokesperson Rodericka Applewhaite issued the following statement:

“Out-of-touch millionaire Kevin Rinke’s backpedaling isn’t fooling anyone. Broadcasting bold-faced lies about our electoral process is no laughing matter. It’s already yielded violent consequences that erode public trust in the electoral process and our democracy with it. If Rinke is conceding there is no shred of truth to his bogus ad then he should do the right thing and take it off the air and apologize to Michigan voters he has lied to.”

SHERI JONES (WLNS): Election officials are speaking out against a GOP candidate’s ad focused on election integrity. It is our top story tonight at 11. […] We’re hearing tonight for the first time from Republican gubernatorial candidate Kevin Rinke and election officials over his campaign ad that some officials say amounts to disinformation. […]

JOSH SANCHEZ (WLNS): Sheri, we have gotten stacks of viewer emails and phone calls with concerns over the ad that has been playing on stations around the area and here on WLNS. I spoke with Kevin Rinkie who said the ad is a joke, focusing on what he claims is a bigger problem, election integrity.

KEVIN RINKE: What’s really important isn’t the zombie, or the tongue and cheek comment about dead people voting. What is important is about election integrity, and that has nothing to do with 2020. Election integrity has been a standard and needs to be a standard that the people of Michigan and the people of our country are comfortable with.

SANCHEZ: Candidate for governor Kevin Rinke says his ad where he appears alongside a zombie has been a success in garnering attention to his campaign and his calls for tighter election laws. He says if elected governor, he would press for voter IDs and clean up the voter rolls. But a Michigan Secretary of State spokesperson said the department already does that.

TRACY WIMMER (SOS spokesperson): Michigan also has an incredibly clean voter roll system and we maintain our rolls in accordance with federal election law. We do again already have voter ID laws in the state of Michigan that work very well. They are time tested. And they are very similar to many other time-tested voter ID laws across the nation.

SANCHEZ: Tracy Wimmer adds that the office has done more maintenance on the rolls in the last three years compared to previous decades. Both the Secretary of State’s Office and Ingham County Clerk Barb Byrum, stress that Michigan’s audit process and the ballot counting process are separate and that helps keep results safe. Byrum called the type of rhetoric found in Rinke’s ad “dangerous” and sees similarities to messaging that led up to the January 6th attack on the Capitol.

BARB BYRUM (Ingham County Clerk): The more people hear this misinformation, this false information, regardless of how many times it’s been proven false, they continue to hear it, they believe it, and then they act on it.

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