National Politics

The Latest: House speaker asks lawmaker to resign

The Latest on a Michigan lawmaker charged with seeking to sell votes on an issue important to unions in exchange for campaign contributions (all times local):

3:35 p.m.

The leader of the Michigan House has asked a lawmaker to resign from office after he was charged with seeking campaign contributions in exchange for opposition to anti-union legislation.

Republican Speaker Lee Chatfield said Tuesday that his request to Rep. Larry Inman "is under consideration." Chatfield did not say if he would pursue an expulsion if the Traverse City-area Republicans refuses to resign.

Inman says he's innocent.

A federal grand jury indicted Inman on three charges: attempted extortion, soliciting a bribe and lying to the FBI. The allegations are related to a vote to repeal a wage law on public construction projects.

Inman voted to repeal the wage law. Prosecutors say he had pledged to vote against the repeal in exchange for campaign cash. The carpenters union didn't respond.

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2:20 p.m.

A Michigan lawmaker says he will "vigorously" fight charges that he sought campaign contributions in exchange for opposition to anti-union legislation.

Rep. Larry Inman released a statement Wednesday, saying he's innocent. The Republican from the Traverse City area says he's "never compromised the integrity of my vote on any issue."

A federal grand jury indicted Inman on three charges: attempted extortion, soliciting a bribe and lying to the FBI. The allegations are related to a vote to repeal a wage law on public construction projects.

Defense attorney Chris Cooke says "there was no intent to break the law."

Inman voted to repeal the wage law. Prosecutors say he had pledged to vote against the repeal in exchange for campaign cash. The carpenters union didn't respond.

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12:50 p.m.

A Michigan lawmaker charged with seeking to trade his vote for campaign contributions has been removed from his legislative committees, and his office has been taken over by nonpartisan staff.

Republican Rep. Larry Inman was charged Tuesday with attempted extortion, soliciting a bribe and lying to the FBI.

Republican House Speaker Lee Chatfield says he stripped Inman of his committee assignments and directed the House Business Office to take control of his office to ensure consistent services are available for people living in Inman's Traverse City-area district.

Chatfield says everyone in the House is "surprised and disappointed" by the news. He says there will be more to say "once we've been able to have a longer conversation" with Inman.

Inman is accused of seeking campaign contributions from a union in exchange for voting to keep the prevailing wage law. In the end, he voted with the majority to repeal it.

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12:20 p.m.

A Michigan lawmaker charged with seeking to trade his vote for campaign contributions says he's surprised to hear about the indictment.

Rep. Larry Inman tells The Detroit News that he spoke to the FBI last summer after the Legislature voted to repeal a wage law on government construction projects. He says agents "had some questions on the vote." But he says he didn't have the "slightest idea" of the focus of the investigation.

Inman declined further comment.

The Traverse City-area Republican is charged with attempted extortion, soliciting a bribe and lying to the FBI. Inman is accused of seeking campaign contributions in exchange for voting to keep the wage law. In the end, he voted with the majority to repeal it.

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10:30 a.m.

A Michigan lawmaker has been charged with seeking a bribe from a labor union in exchange for a favorable vote on a wage issue.

A federal grand jury indicted state Rep. Larry Inman on charges of attempted extortion, soliciting a bribe and lying to the FBI. Inman is a Republican from the Traverse City area who is serving his third term in the House after decades as a local official in northern Michigan.

Inman is accused of pledging to vote against an effort to repeal Michigan's prevailing wage law if he could get campaign contributions from a carpenters union. Prosecutors say the union didn't respond as requested, and Inman voted to repeal the law.

A message seeking comment was left for Inman on Wednesday. His website says his interests include looking for Amelia Earhart's plane.

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