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GOP Rep removed from committees after saying he can't guarantee safety in Lansing on Monday

Rep. Gary Eisen
Posted at 10:57 AM, Dec 14, 2020

(WXYZ) — Michigan Rep. Gary Eisen, a Republican from St. Clair has been removed from his committee assignments after saying he couldn't guarantee a safe day in Lansing Monday as Michigan's electors gather to vote for Joe Biden.

Speaking to WPHM on Monday morning, Eisen was asked, "Can you assure me that this is going to be a safe day in Lansing, nobody is going to get hurt?"

He responded, "No," before adding that, "I don't know because what we're doing today is uncharted. It hasn't been done."

During the 11-minute interview, Eisen didn't give details about what may happen, but said he was asked to help.

Michigan House Speaker Lee Chatfield and Speaker-elect Jason Wentworth released a joint statement saying in part, "We have been consistent in our position on issues of violence and intimidation in politics – it is never appropriate and never acceptable."

They also said that violence has no place in the democratic process that that Eisen has been removed from his committee assignments for the rest of this term. The term does end at the end of the year.

Eisen released a statement just before 1:30 p.m. It is below.

“I regret the confusion over my comments this morning, and I want to assure everyone that those of us who are supporting an alternative slate of electors intend to do so peacefully and legally. I wanted to attend today’s event to help prevent violence, not promote it. I no longer plan to go to the Capitol with that group today.

“My comments were meant to reflect that while our group intends to be peaceful, I did not feel I could speak for other groups. Apparently some people are making credible threats of violence today, and I am glad local law enforcement is on the scene preventing any such action and keeping everyone safe. Our group, who will also be at the Capitol today to request to be seated as electors, intends to participate in our democracy peacefully. We are all concerned about safety today and hopeful for a safe, legal and clear process at the Capitol.”

The Michigan legislative buildings are closed Monday due to "credible threats," police say, as the 16 Michigan electors gather to send their Electoral College votes to Washington D.C. for Joe Biden.