The former chief of police in Detroit slammed Gov. Gretchen Whitmer (D) in a speech to the Kent County Republican Party Monday night.
“The young people of today don’t want to sit at home and get free money,” James Craig said. “They want to experience the world, and in fact, they want to change the world. You can’t change the world sitting at home in your pajamas getting free money waiting on Queen Gretchen to issue her royal decree.”
Craig has not officially announced his candidacy for governor but has been campaigning for months. He left his post as head of the Detroit Police Department on June 1 and has made several cable news appearances since his retirement.
His “Queen Gretchen” remark was a reference to the current Michigan governor, who has been embattled in scandal, sometimes for her outlandish COVID-19 orders, and other times for her failure to abide by those orders.
Whitmer also faced scrutiny after a severance package was paid to the outgoing head of Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) Robert Gordon, who left without explanation early this year. The $155,000 bill was footed by the taxpayer.
Craig, a Black man, also pledged to bring new voters to the GOP and specifically mentioned urban areas like Detroit, Flint, Traverse City, and Grand Rapids as places where he would like to target.
“I offer to lead our Republican Party into areas that haven’t historically voted Republican and show that we are all among friends, and there are no enemies when it comes to Michigan’s future,” he said during his speech.
Craig made national headlines when he appeared on Fox News and bashed Rep. Rashida Tlaib (D-MI-13), who called for abolishing the police after the shooting of Daunte Wright in Minnesota.
“You know, I got to tell you, and I’ve said it so many times,” he said, “[Tlaib’s] comments were reckless and…really don’t represent the people who live in our city.”
He offered to throw Tlaib a going away party if she resigned from her position as a congresswoman.
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