Suddenly optimistic Michigan Democrats nominate ticket for November vote

LANSING — An optimistic Michigan Democratic Party held its state convention at the Lansing Center on Saturday and Sunday, nominating Governor Gretchen Whitmer as the front runner in the Nov. 8 general election ticket.

Midterm elections are often bad news for the ruling party in Washington, D.C.

That fact, along with high inflation and President Joe Biden’s low approval ratings, has given Democrats cause for concern in recent months.

But the past few weeks have also given Democrats cause for optimism, with polls showing their voters are more energetic since the U.S. Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade, impacting abortion rights, and signs that Biden’s numbers may have bottomed out as he signed hard-fought Congressional legislation to lower the cost of prescription drugs, tax a minimum corporate tax, to fight climate change and to address a national shortage of semiconductors, which is impacting the automotive industry.

Michigan Democrats are also cheered by the low fundraising numbers Republicans posted at the top of their state ticket, especially for attorney general’s offices and Secretary of Stateand by a legislative redistricting, which reduced the gerrymandering that generally favored Republicans.

“There are three seats on a par between us and the majority,” House Minority Leader Donna Lasinksi of D-Scio Township told delegates on Sunday.

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Republicans have controlled both houses of the Legislative Assembly since 2011. For the November elections, the State House and Senate districts, for the first time, were chosen by a bipartisan, citizen-led redistricting commission, rather only by partisan legislators.

Along with Whitmer, the convention named Lieutenant Governor Garlin Gilchrist, Attorney General Dana Nessel, and Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson. Like Whitmer, all are incumbents seeking a second four-year term. For the Michigan Supreme Court, the party nominated Justice Richard Bernstein, an incumbent, and Kyra Harris Bolden, an attorney and state representative from Southfield. Bolden made a surprise appearance at the convention on Sunday, after giving birth on Monday.

Whitmer cited achievements over the past four years, including record funding for K-12 education and steps to secure Michigan’s future in auto manufacturing, through grants to GM and Ford tied to manufacturing. electric vehicles.

There’s too much at stake for Democrats to take anything for granted, Whitmer said. “This election is going to be close,” she said.

The Michigan Republicans are holding their nominating convention next Saturday, also in Lansing. On August 2, Tudor Dixon, a Norton Shores businesswoman and former Conservative television commentator, won a five-way primary to become the party’s candidate for governor.

Contact Paul Egan: 517-372-8660 or [email protected] Follow him on Twitter @paulegan4. Learn more about Michigan politics and sign up for our election bulletin.

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