Michigan GOP Official Who Blamed Trump for Election Loss Resigns

By Zachary Stieber
Zachary Stieber
Zachary Stieber
Zachary Stieber covers U.S. news and stories relating to the COVID-19 pandemic. He is based in Maryland.
July 15, 2021 Updated: July 15, 2021

A Michigan Republican Party official who had blamed former President Donald Trump for losing the 2020 presidential election has resigned.

Jason Roe, who became the executive director of the Michigan GOP in February, told news outlets he stepped down and had informed Chairman Ron Weiser.

“I resigned my position as executive director and the reasons will remain between me and Chairman Weiser,” Roe said. “We’ve built an amazing team and I know they will be very successful in 2022. I look forward to helping however I can.”

Former and current Trump spokespersons didn’t immediately comment on the resignation.

In November 2020, Roe—at the time a Republican strategist—told Politico that Trump “retains a hold that is forcing party leaders to continue down the path of executing his fantasy of overturning the outcome—at their own expense.

“Frankly, continuing to humor him merely excuses his role in this. The election wasn’t stolen, he blew it. Up until the final two weeks, he seemingly did everything possible to lose. Given how close it was, there is no one to blame but Trump,” he added.

In another interview in May, Roe doubled down on his comments, claiming Trump “was seemingly doing everything he could to lose a winnable race.”

Trump received 232 electoral votes to President Joe Biden’s 306, losing several key swing states that he had won in 2016. Trump lost Michigan by more than 150,000 votes after beating Hillary Clinton there by about 11,000 votes four years earlier.

Roe’s remarks prompted Republican delegates to call on party leaders to oust him.

Weiser defended Roe.

“While there are a few activists who want to shrink our party and are focused on fighting with other Republicans, my team is focused on growing our party and fighting our true opponents, the Democrats,” he said in a statement to news outlets. “That is where our focus will remain, and I’d encourage everyone to channel their frustration toward winning in 2022, not attacking each other. The Democrats are the only ones who benefit.”

Debra Ell, a GOP organizer who helped organize the ouster effort, said in a statement that she believes Roe was fired.

“This is just the beginning of the RINO Hunt,” she said, referring to “Republicans in Name Only.”

“He was so arrogant to blame the 2020 election ‘loss’ on our Republican president, not the Democrats, and cited ‘there was no fraud.’ So he’s calling out our president, hundreds of affidavits from Republicans who were there and now Republican legislators and candidates who say differently,” she wrote.

After Roe’s resignation, Weiser said the official “did a tremendous job putting together a team and getting us ready for 2022.”

“We wish him nothing but the best and know he will be an asset to Republicans in Michigan and all over the country this cycle and for years to come,” he said.

Zachary Stieber
Zachary Stieber covers U.S. news and stories relating to the COVID-19 pandemic. He is based in Maryland.