The chairman of the Michigan Republican Party, Ron Weiser, says the state’s top Democratic officeholders — all of whom are women — are “witches” who should be burned at the stake.

The Detroit News is reporting that Weiser made his remarks during a question and answer session as he spoke to the North Oakland Republican Club on Thursday:

“Someone in the crowd asked how to unseat U.S. Reps. Fred Upton of St. Joseph and Peter Meijer of Grand Rapids Township, who were among 10 House Republicans to support the impeachment of former President Donald Trump in January. The Senate voted to acquit.

“Weiser responded the party is focused on beating the ‘three witches’ in 2022, apparently referring to Gov. Gretchen Whitmer, Attorney General Dana Nessel and Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson — the three statewide Democratic leaders who are up for re-election next year.”

Weiser then said he was recruiting Republican candidates to “soften up” the state’s Democratic leaders so they would be “ready for the burning at the stake.”

Another member of the audience then asked Weiser what could be done about “witches in our own party,” to which the GOP chairman replied:

“Ma’am, other than assassination, I have no other way … other than voting out. OK? 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.”

Weiser’s remarks are especially troubling in light of the fact that right-wing extremists, according to federal law enforcement officials, were planning to kidnap and execute Gov. Whitmer. That plot was foiled before it could be carried out and the plotters are facing decades in prison for their conspiracy.

Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel responded to Weiser’s hateful comments with a biting tweet pointing out the achievements of the state’s leaders:

Confronted with his remarks, Weiser weakly tried to suggest he had meant no harm:

“While I should have chosen my words more carefully, anyone who knows me understands I would never advocate for violence.”

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