Michigan's top-ranked Republican says MAGA riot was a staged hoax -- and 'Mitch McConnell was in on it'
(Screenshot via YouTube.com)

Michigan Senate Majority Leader Mike Shirkey is floating a conspiracy theory that claims the storming of the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6 was actually a "staged" event, adding that it was "hoax" that was not carried out by Trump supporters, according to the Detroit Free Press.

Shirkey made the claims in a Youtube video posted by the account R.O.A.R. (Reclaim Our American Republic), which shows him attending a meeting in a restaurant with a small group of party officials on same day the Hillsdale County Republican Party censured him for not doing enough to support former President Trump and stand up to Gov. Gretchen Whitmer.

"That wasn't Trump people. That's been a hoax from day one," Shirkey says in the video. "It was all staged."

"Hell, Mitch McConnell was part of it," Shirkey later says in the video. "I think they wanted to have a mess."

A spokesman for Gov. Gretchen Whitmer criticized Shirkey for his comments.

"It's disappointing that Sen. Shirkey is spending his time on political potshots, indulging conspiracy theories, and expressing empathy for the insurrection at the U.S. Capitol building. Governor Whitmer is staying laser-focused on keeping people safe and getting Michigan back to work," Bobby Leddy said Tuesday.

"She's ready to work across the aisle with the legislature to pass the Michigan COVID Recovery plan to fund vaccinations, support our local schools, and help our small businesses," Leddy added.