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Jim Fouts, mayor of Warren, Michigan, denies making racist, sexist comments on recordings

WARREN, Mich. -- Federal, state and county lawmakers are calling for a Detroit-area mayor to quit after unverified audio tapes surfaced purportedly featuring him making racist and sexist comments.

Warren Mayor Jim Fouts denies it’s his voice on the recordings released Monday by online news site Motor City Muckraker. Fouts issued a similar denial last month, following the release of recordings containing disparaging remarks about disabled people.

Democratic U.S. Rep. Sander Levin and other lawmakers issued a statement Tuesday urging Fouts to resign. They describe the recorded comments as “racist and disparaging of women.”

Fouts said via Facebook that he’s being slandered and that he won’t resign.

The mayor has been feuding with Macomb County Executive Mark Hackel over allegations that Hackel allowed soil to be illegally dumped at a Sterling Heights amphitheater.

Detroit Mayor Mike Duggan said that if Fouts has been framed, he must take legal action, CBS station WWJ-TV reports.

“If what Fouts is saying is true, that means there have been a number of felonies committed, which means he needs to go to the State Police today and file a crime report saying I’ll cooperate; I’ll give you voice matches so that you can prove it’s a fake,” Duggan said at the Detroit Economic Club.

“It’s a very easy thing to do if he’s telling the truth. And if he doesn’t go and file a criminal charge, he needs to resign immediately because it means he’s lying,” he added.

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