The bipartisan committee voted 3-0 in favor of certification. Board member Norman Shinkle, a Republican, opted to abstain from the vote while calling for an overhaul of the state's elections procedures.
“I do not plan on voting for certification,” Shinkle said in his final statement ahead of the vote. “I believe Wayne County’s certification process needs to be looked at. I think there’s serious problems with it.”
President-elect Joe Biden secured a projected victory in Michigan earlier this month en route to surpassing the 270 electoral vote threshold required to take the White House. However, President Trump has yet to concede the race and his campaign attorneys have alleged fraud and voting irregularities in Michigan and other states.
The Trump campaign pledged to continue its legal fight in Michigan and other states.
“Certification by state officials is simply a procedural step,” Trump campaign senior legal adviser Jenna Ellis said in a statement. "We are going to continue combatting election fraud around the country as we fight to count all the legal votes. Americans must be assured that the final results are fair and legitimate.”
Michigan Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson, who has publicly clashed with the Trump campaign over its fraud claims, said the vote showed "democracy has prevailed."
“Today’s vote of the State Board of Canvassers to certify Michigan’s November election confirms the truth: the election was fair and secure, and the results accurately reflect the will of the voters,” Benson said. “A record breaking 5.5 million Michigan citizens cast ballots in this election, more than ever before in our state’s history. Their will is clear and unequivocal.”
The Michigan vote took place after a lengthy meeting in which county clerks urged the state board of canvassers to certify the results.
Michelle Anzaldi, clerk of the Pittsfield Election Commission, talked about how hard officials worked to make sure the election ran smoothly and votes were counted properly.
“To discount that work and say that the process wasn’t fair or transparent was, in my opinion, wrong,” she said.
In his closing statement, Shinkle called on Michigan to modernize its elections procedures. He cited Florida’s efforts to update its processes after the 2000 recount as an example that Michigan should follow.
“It is my greatest hope that after the next election, this board will be able to certify the results in an environment where there are no unanswered questions or suspicions that our election was in any way compromised,” Shinkle said. "All citizens need to be assured that Michigan is conducting clean, accurate and professional elections.”
Shinkle called on Michigan’s state legislature to conduct an “in-depth review of all elections processes and procedures."
Board member Julie Matuzak, a Democrat, voted in favor of certification but noted that she concurred with Shinkle’s call for a review and overhaul of outdated procedures.
Matuzak said that while there was no evidence of widespread voter fraud, officials had identified “lots of human errors” that could have been avoided.
“Let’s modernize how we do elections in this state,” Matuzak said.
Fox News' Ronn Blitzer contributed to this report.