Shirkey, Senate GOP Advance Voter Suppression Bills While Withholding Billions in COVID-19 Relief for Michigan’s Working Families

LANSING — Despite President Joe Biden winning the general election handily, Senate Majority Leader Mike Shirkey continues to drag around the long-stale false claim that the election was rigged. Today, he’s continuing this crusade of conspiracies by pushing a slate of voter suppression bills through his chamber under the guise of “election integrity.”

This is the latest Hail Mary effort by the Republican over the past year.

Several months before a single Michigander cast a ballot last cycle, Shirkey began lobbing baseless allegations that absentee ballots would “invite fraud and security concerns.” When that proved ineffective, Shirkey upped the ante by going all in with lies about “ballot harvesting” and “abandoning constitutional duties in favor of furthering a progressive agenda.

Shirkey legitimized Trump’s witch hunt in a key battleground state well into November. He huddled with Trump at the White House, argued that the election was “far from behind us” (it was), and refused to acknowledge that Trump would be a one-term president (he is).

This year, Shirkey claimed that the deceased cast ballots in Michigan, earning him a rating of “False” from Politifact. Most recently, he elevated his argument to the blanket and wildly speculative claim that “there’s always some fraud in every election.

“Shirkey is using the same playbook as Republicans across the country to ensure the Big Lie plagues our democratic process for decades to come,” said Rodericka Applewhaite, Michigan Democratic Party spokesperson. “The reality is this: Michiganders rejected Trump at the ballot box in an election confirmed to be secure by the most comprehensive audit in state history. Full stop. Shirkey has proven that there’s no low he won’t stoop to as he fruitlessly pursues this manufactured cause while his chamber continues to withhold billions of dollars to support Michigan seniors, students, and small businesses. It’s time for Republicans in the legislature to get to work and focus on helping Michigan’s working families instead of creating more barriers to voting.”

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