ICYMI: Extremist Michigan Candidates Peddle Conspiracy Theories, Anti-LGBTQ+, Anti-Abortion Propaganda

by HRC Staff

Radical MI candidates lie, but here's the truth:

Radical MI candidates falsely claim LGBTQ+ individuals and their allies are “grooming” or indoctrinating children to be transgender


  • Gubernatorial candidate Tudor Dixon compared slavery to teaching about LGBTQ+ people and accused teachers of “grooming” children.

  • Secretary of State candidate Kristina Karamo has falsely suggested that sexual abuse stems from the LGBTQ+ community.

  • In one of her many anti-LGBTQ+ podcast episodes, Karamo falsely claims that a “political LQBT[Q+] movement” will “indoctrine society with sexual perversion” and that as a result, “pedophilia is going to be normalized.”

  • Attorney General candidate Matthew DePerno resorted to name calling, labeling Attorney General Dana Nessel “Michigan’s Groomer General,” amplifying beliefs held by conspiracy theorist group Qanon.


  • This is simply not true. It just doesn’t happen. The ‘grooming’ rhetoric is being spread by a small group of radical extremists as part of a coordinated and concerted effort to attack LGBTQ+ people to rile up extreme members of their base ahead of the midterm elections. It is an old narrative rooted in past anti-gay attacks.

  • Nearly 1 in 5 of any type of hate crime is already motivated by anti-LGBTQ+ bias, and statements like these only further endanger LGBTQ+ people. There is no data or basis for their absurd claims.

  • AG Dana Nessel is Michigan’s first openly gay attorney general, making DePerno’s comment a clear anti-LGBTQ+ attack.

Extremist politicians are pushing for anti-LGBTQ+ public school policies that endanger and isolate LGBTQ+ kids and their families, or are simply unnecessary


  • Dixon claimed Governor Whitmer “hasn’t stood for parents,” is “putting little boys in your daughters’ locker room,” and that parents are asking “why do we have adults whispering sex and gender into the ears of our little kids?”

  • In addition to believing that public schools are “government indoctrination camps,” Karamo believes that children should not be taught about same-sex marriage. During a January episode of her podcast “It’s Solid Food,” she stated “There is no such thing as a person with two mommies and two daddies. That’s just factually incorrect.”


  • In contrast, Governor Whitmer created the Michigan Parents’ Council because she knows that all parents want to shape their children’s education. The Council will formally bring parents into the education budget process for the first time in Michigan history, represents parents from across Michigan, and will convene a series of regional parent roundtables to gather input.

  • Dixon and anti-LGBTQ+ legislators are unable to provide evidence of drag shows ever taking place in any Michigan public school.

  • The United States Supreme Court granted the constitutional right to same sex marriage in 2015. 71% of Americans, and 70% of Michiganders in particular, support marriage equality. 65% of likely voters in battleground states want same sex marriage protections to be the law of the land.

A majority of Michiganders support abortion rights, yet anti-choice MI candidates spread abortion lies


  • Dixon falsely claimed “I've never said that I wanted to criminalize people. I've never said I wanted this to be a felony. She is just completely making that up. My position on abortion is clear. I am pro life with exceptions for life of the mother.”

  • When asked whether children who are raped by family members should be forced to give birth, Tudor Dixon stated that “a life is a life for me.”

  • Karamo also stated that abortion is “the most wicked thing ever. It’s far more wicked than slavery.”

  • Matthew DePerno believes that Plan B should be banned in Michigan and stated “it’d be no different than, like, fentanyl.”


  • Abortion is a basic healthcare need for millions of people across our country. These attacks are a coordinated, well-funded five decade effort by anti-abortion politicians to overturn Roe v. Wade and strip people of the freedom to control their own bodies, futures, and lives.

  • Criminalizing abortion does not stop abortions, it just makes abortion less safe. The World Health Organization estimates that 25 million unsafe abortions take place each year, the vast majority of them in developing countries.

  • 64% of respondents of a recent poll plan to vote for Proposal 3 to enshrine abortion rights in the state constitution. In a poll from this summer, 68% of Republican voters in Michigan said they support allowing abortion when a woman is raped or impregnated by a family member. 75% support exceptions in the case of a minor.

  • Dixon publicly supported a suspended 1931 Michigan law that would make it a crime for doctors to perform an abortion, punishable by up to four years in prison. She called it a “good law” at a Republican debate this past spring.

  • Plan B is a form of emergency contraception to prevent pregnancy after unprotected sex. It has nothing to do with fentanyl.

The Human Rights Campaign is America’s largest civil rights organization working to achieve equality for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer people. HRC envisions a world where LGBTQ+ people are embraced as full members of society at home, at work and in every community.

Paid for by Human Rights Campaign PAC (www.hrc.org). Not authorized by any candidate or candidate’s committee.

Contact Us

To make a general inquiry, please visit our contact page. Members of the media can reach our press office at: (202) 572-8968 or email press@hrc.org.