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Michigan Republican gubernatorial candidate Tudor Dixon is responding to a group affiliated with the Democratic Governors Association (DGA) following the release of a new ad targeting her for police funding and claiming that his plans would result in the state being “less safe” with “fewer cops on the street.”
The group, Put Michigan First, is working to promote incumbents Democratic Governor Gretchen Whitmer and is spending seven figures on ad buys accusing Dixon of planning to cut police budgets in states by hundreds of millions of dollars.
In an exclusive interview with Fox News Digital, Dixon criticized the ad as false and argued that it was evidence that Democrats feared a showdown between her and Whitmer in November.
“It’s interesting because we’ve seen Democrats use this national strategy to rig this Republican primary, and they seem to be building the candidate they most want to run against,” he said. “The story about the police is obviously not true. I even have the endorsement of the Police Officers Association.”
GROUP BACKED BY Democrats GOALS OF MICHIGAN GOP GOP CANDIDATE TUDOR DIXON ON POLICE FUNDING IN NEW AD
“They’re going to go up against me specifically, and I think that shows that they think the other candidates in the field are weak. They probably have some strategy against them that’s going to be very effective. And their goal is to eliminate me in the primary and not have me.” want to face in the general”, he added.
Dixon emphasized that none of his plans would involve a reduction in funding for the police and that, in fact, he would ensure that the police received the funds they needed for training, as well as other benefits.
“That’s one of the things that when I talk to police officers across the state. They say some of our departments just don’t have enough funding for training. So we want to make sure they’re well-funded, but also take a look creative ways to bring them to the state, whether it’s incentivizing police officers to come here or offering a tax credit for continued health care after they retire,” he said.
Dixon then criticized Whitmer’s police record, accusing her of supporting the “Defund the Police” movement and overseeing a massive rise in crime in cities across the state.
“I think this is an interesting attack considering her track record and the fact that she has shown herself to be a completely incompetent governor. This is how you go against someone who comes with real leadership and real ideas. Her incompetence is being shown, and it will be a failure in November if it runs against me,” he said.
Spending on campaign ads against Dixon is the latest example of meddling by Democratic groups in the Republican primaries. Other examples include the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee spending hundreds of thousands on ads in favor of Rep. Peter Meijer’s main challenger, R-Michigan, in the race for Michigan’s 3rd Congressional District, and the DGA spending millions in Maryland to push a candidate endorsed by former President Donald Trump over the more established conservative candidate.
The Republican primary takes place on Tuesday and Dixon will face a packed field of candidates seeking to take on Whitmer, who is running unopposed in the Democratic primary.
Kyle Morris and Paul Steinhauser of Fox News contributed to this report.