LANSING, Mich. (Michigan News Source) – In the never-ending story of who is in charge of the Michigan GOP, the newest chapter comes in the form of a letter sent by the Republican National Committee’s (RNC) Counsel’s Office. The letter went out to both disputed Chairs of the MIGOP, originally elected Chair Kristina Karamo and newly-elected Chair Pete Hoekstra.

Karamo removal done properly according to RNC.

 Dated January 24th, the letter says that after their review, the RNC has determined that Karamo was “properly removed” as the Chair of the party at a meeting on January 6th by a group of state committee members.

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The letter, from RNC General Counsel Michael Whatley, says that they are aware of the ongoing litigation in the matter. The RNC is also aware of the January 20th meeting called by Malinda Pego serving as Acting Chair and the election of Hoekstra as the Chair at that meeting.

RNC claims to have limited power for a binding determination in dispute.

 While all parties await the outcome of the litigation, the RNC says they have “limited power” under their rules to issue “binding determinations in internal state party disputes.”

However, in an internal review by the RNC, they found “Ms. Karamo was properly removed in accordance with the MIGOP bylaws on January 6.”

 Their review included looking at the MIGOP bylaws, meeting minutes and other materials provided by both sides in the dispute.

No determination for anyone to be the official Chair of the MIGOP yet.

However, even after the review, the RNC is not yet recognizing Hoekstra as the new state party Chair. They say that “additional information could conceivably come to light which changes (the RNC Counsel’s Office) view.”

The RNC says they are unable to conclusively rule on whether Hoekstra or Karamo is a voting member which means neither could be credentialed as the Michigan GOP Chair for their upcoming winter meeting next week but can attend as guests.

Upcoming RNC meeting could yield a recommendation.

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The letter concludes by saying, “Following the (meeting), a body of RNC members will move quickly to review the dispute and make such recommendation as they believe appropriate.”

The Hoekstra faction and the RNC both seem to want to wrap this matter up as quickly as possible with upcoming elections looming. The lawsuit by the anti-Karamo faction says, “Ms. Karamo’s refusal to allow the committee and the Michigan Republican Party to move forward, particularly with an election cycle rapidly approaching, requires swift judicial intervention.”

The letter from the RNC is their first public response to the dispute between the two factions of the Republican Party who have been claiming control over the party.

Karamo responds to letter.

Meanwhile, Karamo is still in control of the party’s website, email communications, social media channels and bank accounts. And in response to the letter from the RNC, Karamo says that while the letter is authentic, it’s only an “opinion” and “not relevant.”

Karamo goes on to say that it’s business as usual for her and her administration and says the the letter was “politically motivated to try and further intimidate her and her team.”