The good people of Michigan have been under the thumb of three vindictive bullies since the 2018 mid-term elections: Governor Whitmer with her state-destroying lockdowns, Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson who has done everything to keep the 2020 elections shrouded in a cover-up, and the leftist darling, top-cop, vindictive and relentless, Dana Nessel.

Ms. Nessel is known for being ruthless, which wouldn’t be a bad thing if she were pursuing hardened criminals. Unfortunately, it is the good and decent people of Michigan who have felt her wrath over the past year, as they have fought to keep their businesses open and food on their tables.

Owner of Marlena’s Bistro in Holland, Mi, Marlena Hackney had been in Nessel’s crosshairs for noncompliance with emergency COVID rules on restaurant capacity, mask-wearing, and distancing. Ms. Hackney, who fled communist Poland as a teen to come to America, closed the restaurant after Gov. Gretchen Whitmer declared a COVID emergency and imposed the first round of business lockdowns. Ms. Hackney then re-opened her restaurant when Covid restrictions were lifted last summer but refused to comply when new restrictions on indoor dining were reimposed in the fall of 2020.

Marlena told her customers, “Your health is your responsibility.”

Upon hearing that the Holland restaurant owner might go on Fox News to tell her story, Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel panicked, emailing her staff: “Do we know her whereabouts? We should just have her picked up before she goes on. This is outrageous.”

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Eileen Whipple, an assistant attorney general, notified Nessel of Ms. Hackney’s intention to go on Fox News to tell her story. “Should I be prepared to respond to this?” Nessel asked. And “I hope she gets the full 93 days for this. (Is that the max for civil contempt or just criminal contempt?)”

The email exchange was obtained through an FOIA request by The Mackinac Center for Public Policy as it sought documents related to Ms. Hackney’s case.

Marlena did appear on Fox News on March 17, 2020, to tell her story. She was arrested by the Michigan State Police 2-days later where she spent the next 4-days in jail.

Arriving in the U.S. in pursuit of freedom and opportunity nearly 40 years ago, Marlena describes her responsibility to her patrons and her employees:

“I work hard. You work hard and you can accomplish many things. My employees depend on me,” she said. “I’m the one who has to pay the bills. The city is not giving me a break on my property taxes,”.

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