Muskegon County board votes against censuring commissioner

Muskegon County

An undated courtesy photo of Muskegon County Commissioner Zach Lahring.

MUSKEGON, Mich. (WOOD) — The Muskegon County Board of Commissioners has voted against censuring a member who posted controversial images on Facebook.

In a 5-4 vote Tuesday night, the board decided not to censure Commissioner Zach Lahring, a Republican representing the southeastern portion of the county and a chair of the Muskegon County Republican Party.

Among the posts Lahring made was a homophobic slur and attacks on fellow Commissioner Bob Scolnik.

Late last month, the commission decided to bring this to a vote, saying Lahring’s Facebook posts were offensive and don’t represent the views of Muskegon County.

One Democrat on the board sided with Republicans in the decision.

Before the vote, Lahring once again defended his posts.

“My Facebook page is my business. This censure will have maybe even a negative effect on this because usually when you punch me, I punch you back. And it might get worse. I’ve probably offended more Republicans than Democrats with my Facebook posts,” Lahring said.

He faced similar criticism earlier this year, with opponents saying he wrote racist or otherwise offensive social media posts.

Censure is a largely symbolic move; even if the board had voted to censure him, Lahring wouldn’t have lost his job. But some commissioners said it would have sent a message.

Only the governor has the power to remove a commissioner from a position.

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