The senator who decided to tell the truth

He didn’t stop there. Galvanized by the shameless grifting he’d encountered during the course of his investigation, McBroom stunned his GOP colleagues by referring to Michigan’s attorney general for possible prosecution “those who have been utilizing misleading and false information about Antrim County to raise money or publicity for their own ends.”

This represented the one plot twist in McBroom’s report. (Some Democrats expressed surprise at McBroom’s recommending enhanced election-security policies, but most of his proposals are not new, and he has distanced himself from some of his party’s more restrictive new measures.) Concluding that the election wasn’t stolen is one thing. Suggesting that certain people who alleged a stolen election ought to be prosecuted—by a progressive attorney general who is loathed by the conservative base—is another thing entirely.

McBroom is aware of the risks. He will be accused of trying to silence conservatives, of censoring his own constituents, of punishing anyone who dares to question the legitimacy of the Biden administration and the U.S. elections system. But he makes no apologies. “Fraud is fraud,” he shrugged. “If they lied to people to make money off people, that’s a crime.”

I asked McBroom whether, under that standard, Trump—whose affiliated entities raised enormous sums of money under the guise of a legal strategy to overturn the election results—might be vulnerable to prosecution. He laughed nervously. “We didn’t investigate Trump. The report didn’t investigate him. So I have to stick to what the report says.”