“Wishful thinking,” “politically motivated,” “no evidence,” “witch hunt.”

Attorneys representing 15 Republican electors who backed former President Donald Trump in 2020 offered those descriptors and others on Tuesday as Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel’s criminal case against them continued to fall apart.

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“Where’s the evidence of any intent that anybody had to commit to crime?” defense lawyer John Freeman asked.

“It’s all wishful thinking,” he said. “It’s a politically motivated witch hunt that has no basis in the evidence.”

Last July, Nessel announced eight felony charges each against 16 Republicans whose names appeared on a false document backing Trump, alleging their actions “undermined the public’s faith in the integrity of our elections” and “plainly violated the laws by which we administer our elections in Michigan,” The Detroit News reports.

“My department has prosecuted numerous cases of election law violations throughout my tenure, and it would be malfeasance of the greatest magnitude if my department failed to act here in the face of overwhelming evidence of an organized effort to circumvent the lawfully cast ballots of millions of Michigan voters in a presidential election,” she said at the time.

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Through 12 days of preliminary examinations in Ingham County District Court, that “overwhelming evidence” has yet to materialize. Prosecutors must prove the defendants intended to defraud when they signed paperwork backing Trump in 2020, but that hasn’t happened.

The state’s star witness, who avoided charges in exchange for cooperating with Nessel’s office, told the court on Tuesday he believed he was engaging in a “legitimate process” when he signed his name.

The second day of preliminary exams for six of the defendants followed “glaring” concerns about the case highlighted by Judge Kristen Simmons the day prior. At multiple points on Monday, Simmons was forced to halt proceedings to allow Nessel’s top investigator, Howard Shock, to reference his notes for basic details of the case, including when the investigation started, about statements on social media, and evidence of criminal intent.

“I can understand why the questions are now steering to how this investigation went about because if you’re not presenting your investigation well, we now need to understand what happened during the investigation,” Simmons said, according to The News.

The problems continued for Shock on Tuesday, when he told the court the Republicans’ electors strategy was focused on effecting a “pause” in the electoral process, and acknowledged “there was no chance that the Republican slate was going to move forward.”

“How is it that citizens taking efforts to cause their legislators to pause a process a crime?” Simmons questioned.

Assistant Attorney General LaDonna Logan later revisited Shock’s testimony about the “pause,” asking him if it was actually an effort to have Republican votes accepted instead of Democratic votes, prompting defense attorneys to question whether she was leading the witness.

“I’m allowed to impeach my own witness,” Logan said.

“Impeach away,” Simmons said. “That just discredits him further and further.”

Shock previously raised questions about his credibility when he named numerous “unindicted co-conspirators” in the case during a first round of preliminary exams for six defendants in April.

Several of those alleged co-conspirators later lashed out in the media, with at least one pointing to communications from Nessel’s office assuring them they’re not an unindicted co-conspirator.

“Howard Shock has not been indicted for stupidity, but he should be,” Laura Cox, a former Michigan Republican Party chair and wife of former Michigan Attorney General Mike Cox, said after Shock named her in court.

The case is expected to continue with preliminary examinations for three remaining defendants at a later date, before Simmons will determine if there is enough evidence to proceed to trial.

The testimony on Tuesday came the same day Democratic Wisconsin Attorney General Josh Kaul filed felony forgery charges against two attorneys and an aide who participated in a similar strategy there.

Kaul has resisted pressure to bring action against 10 Republican electors in Wisconsin, stating previously he’s relying on federal investigators but hasn’t ruled out a state investigation, PBS reports.