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Lawmakers told Trump they have no role in election

LANSING (AP) — Senate Majority Leader Mike Shirkey sought to downplay his recent meeting with Donald Trump amid the president’s efforts to challenge Joe Biden’s win in Michigan, saying Republicans told Trump that state law does not give legislators a say in awarding electoral votes.

Shirkey and House Speaker Lee Chatfield were among seven GOP lawmakers who met with Trump at the White House last week. Days later, the state elections board certified Biden’s victory and closed the door to any longshot, legally suspect bid to not award Michigan’s 16 electoral votes to the former vice president if canvassers had deadlocked.

“It was a very innocuous meeting. It was high on expectations and low on results,” Shirkey told The Associated Press.

At one point, Trump’s lawyer Rudy Giuliani called in and repeated allegations of voting irregularities in the Democratic stronghold of Wayne County, Shirkey said. Neither Giuliani nor Trump asked the legislators to intervene but instead wanted an “understanding” of state law, he said.

“Once Speaker Chatfield and I made it abundantly clear that our laws are very specific, very clear, no room for ambiguity, basically that was the end of the conversation once we went through that, as it relates to the election,” Shirkey said. “There’s just not any room in our laws for the Legislature to have a part in that.”

He said he was in his workshop taking off his hunting clothes last Wednesday when Trump called to invite him to the White House.

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