The University of Michigan Board of Regents has censured regent Ron Weiser, who chairs the Michigan Republican Party, over comments referring to three of the state’s female Democratic leaders as "witches," calling for his resignation.
According to text of the censure posted on the regents' website, the board approved the motion in a special meeting Friday in response to Weiser's comments about Gov. Gretchen Whitmer (D), Attorney General Dana Nessel (D) and Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson (D).
The censure says the regents “condemn in the strongest possible language the behavior of Regent Weiser, his language, and the actions taken therein, and calls on Regent Weiser to resign from the Board of Regents forthwith.”
During the meeting, Weiser said he took “full responsibility” for his words but would not resign, The Associated Press reported. The regents don’t have the authority to remove him since he was elected by the public.
“I pledge to be part of a respectful dialogue going forward and challenge my colleagues and others to do the same. I will not be canceled.” Weiser said.
He faced swift backlash after video surfaced of him making the comments. He also mentioned anything “other than assassination” while discussing how to oust GOP Michigan Reps. Fred Upton and Peter Meijer, who voted to impeach former President Trump for inciting the Jan. 6 riot at the Capitol.
“Ma'am, other than assassination, I have no other way ... other than voting out. OK?" Weiser said. "You people have to go out there and support their opponents. You have to do what you need to get out the vote in those areas. That's how you beat people."
In a statement last Saturday, he said in part, “I apologize to those I offended for the flippant analogy about three women who are elected officials and for the off-hand comments about two other leaders. I have never advocated for violence and never will.”