Guest column: Did Theis violate her oath of office by signing radical letter?

When Republican Lana Theis became a state senator, she swore an oath to “support the Constitution of the United States.”

Theis violated that oath when she signed a radical letter attempting to interfere with Congress’s constitutional duty to count the votes of the Electoral College and determine the winner of the Nov. 3 presidential election. Delaying the counting of votes until Congress and federal law enforcement conducted “an objective and transparent investigation” into unsubstantiated election fraud would have unconstitutionally extended Trump’s time in office by preventing the timely inauguration of his successor.

On Jan. 4, 2021, Theis signed a letter addressed to “Members of the United States Congress” that included the line: “Given the imminent joint session of Congress to count and certify electoral college votes we would ask you to temporarily delay certification in the name of national unity.”

That letter was posted to Theis’s Facebook page, but was later removed without explanation, other than to claim that it had been a “draft.”



Later, Theis signed a second letter asking for an investigation into (non-existent) election fraud, a letter that did not include anything about delaying the counting of electoral college votes. When the news media published the first letter, Theis asked that it be replaced, even though it was perfectly accurate that she had signed it.

Why the great concern to replace that letter?

It could be because Theis and the other signers realized that they had violated their oath of office and could be subject to removal from office.

She and her supporters will argue that the first letter doesn’t count. But I say it does. She signed it. She agreed with its sentiment. The length of time during which she agreed with that sentiment is irrelevant, in the same way that a person need not premeditate a murder for X number of days in order to be considered to have engaged in premeditation.

We have no way of knowing the number of people who saw that first, radical letter after it was published on social media. For all we know, it could have made its way into far-right chat rooms, or to Donald Trump himself.

We don’t know why she changed her mind, but more likely than not it’s because someone figured out that there was real legal jeopardy connected with the document.

Why such jeopardy?

By asking Congress to delay counting the votes of the electoral college in the letter Theis replaced, she and the other signers were attempting to block implementation of Article II, Sec. 1 of the U.S. Constitution, which states: “The President of the Senate shall, in the Presence of the Senate and House of Representatives, open all the Certificates, and the Votes shall then be counted.” That would have cleared the way for President-elect Joe Biden to be inaugurated on Jan. 20, as Section 1 of the 20th Amendment to the Constitution requires.

But delaying the counting until a lengthy criminal investigation was completed could have pushed back Biden’s inauguration for months, leaving Trump illegally in office.

Interfering in an act required in the U.S. Constitution and halting the peaceful transfer of power is not a way to “support the Constitution of the United States.” Indeed, it’s an attempt to subvert the very Constitution that Theis took an oath to uphold.

Theis is a radical who needs to be held accountable for attempting, however briefly, to halt the scheduled transfer of power.

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4 Comments

  1. sigh,

    Perhaps I am wrong here; but, I will shed some light on the issues being touted here.

    -2018 Michigan: A proposal to bring “same-day voter registration”, “no-reason absentee voting” and more sweeping changes to Michigan’s election law was approved by voters Tuesday by a better than two-to-one margin.

    With 99 percent of the vote counted, the tally was 2,724,234 yes to 1,353,653 no, a margin of 66.8 percent to 33.2 percent.

    There is no conspiracy to defraud the election process. Indeed, the election process is just as secure as ever. The election laws for mail in voting and same day registration were passed two years before the election.

    – September 2020: The Republican controlled Michigan legislature passed two bipartisan election laws and sent them to Gov. Gretchen Whitmer (D) for her signature. Election officials initiated these election year changes due to concern about processing an expected high volume of mail ballots in November because of COVID-19.

    While Michigan voters expanded mail ballot options to all voters by referendum in 2018, the state legislature did not make corresponding upstream and downstream policy changes to the election ecosystem that would facilitate a quicker, more efficient count. The Bipartisan Policy Center’s Task Force on Elections made several recommendations in January 2020 that align, in part, with those adopted in Michigan on September 24.

    The bill package offers enhanced security for mail ballots, more processing time, correction of common voter errors, and better access for overseas military personnel and their spouses.

    In this case, the legislature foresaw the issues coming up in 202o and were smart enough to take action.

    – Six states were asked to review and or hold recounts. I am not going to review what each of them did to meet the demands Each of these states had Republican legislatures and the power to change voting laws and procedures. I do not know of a Governor of Secretary of State who has the power to pass legislation or change it without including the legislature. Here again and perhaps I am wrong on this.

    Oh and those states? Georgia – Republican Legislature and Governor, Wisconsin Republican Legislature, Michigan Republican Legislature (Senate since 1983 and the House a major of the years sine 1990, Pennsylvania – Republican Legislature, Arizona – Republican Governor and Legislature.

    The power to do something in each of these states lies with the Republicans. In Michigan, the Legislature and the Governor acted to meet the oncoming challenge. The legislature sets the laws and rules for how votes are processed in each Michigan county. From what I have seen, the county and township clerks be they Republican or Democrats do an admirable job.

    Trump lost in Michigan by 154,000 votes. There was no way this would be overturned. The right person was elected.

  2. I am embarrassed to admit that I have always voted for Lana in the past. Time for the republican party to dump these people who supported the Trump decisiveness of the past four years.

  3. I am one of Theis’ constituents and feel I can not trust her with my vote again. She needs to resign or be replaced in her next election.

  4. Absolutely Not! Senator Theis did not violate her oath. Rather, she was respondent to her constituents, she made requests that are in keeping with the Constitution and she asked for an investigation into the many and varied reports of fraud in the 2020 election.

    Many of Senator Theis’ constituents and likely a majority of those who voted for her, believe there was substantial fraud in the election. Her letter to Congress was addressing the concerns of the citizenry and is exactly what she should have done. Without a study of all of the reports of fraud, some immediately come to mind. (1) Why did all the swing states where there were sudden vote spikes, at statistically improbably proportions in favor of Joe Biden, all occur about the same time in the middle of the night and in states where Republican Poll Watchers and challengers were in disadvantaged positions or even removed from the room? (2) Why did so many Governors and Secretaries of State unilaterally change their election laws in direct violate of the United States Constitution? (3) Where were counties favorable to Republicans handled in different ways than counties favorable to democrats? (4) Why hasn’t a single Dominion machine yet been independently audited? (5) Why did Detroit have more votes than registered voters? And the list goes on…..

    In the first draft she asked for a delay in certification. Ms Daubenmier assumes a delay would have prevented a January 20 inauguration of President-Elect Biden. Nothing in the letter supports that type of delay, however. I believe an audit, given the resources of the Federal Government, could have been done expeditiously and allowed for a January 20 transition.

    A Congressional investigation could have legitimized the election of the President-elect. It may have uncovered a substantial problem that would have been fixed for future elections. It may have determined the people reelected President Donald Trump. What’s wrong or unconstitutional about a transparent investigation?

    Thank you Senator Theis for doing your duty and responding to the will of your constiuents!

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