2018 Michigan State Senate Elections

Cross-posted at The Western RightRight Michigan, and Red Racing Horses.

All 38 seats in the Michigan Senate are up for election in 2014.  Republicans currently have a 27-11 supermajority, and have controlled the senate since 1983.  Republican control of the state senate has prevented democrats from complete control of Michigan’s government in some years, and stopped a lot of bad things from being passed.

Fortunately for Republicans, the Michigan state senate is up only in midterms, which usually favor Republicans much more than presidential years.  Republicans had a good year in 2014, picking up one state senate seat, following four pickups in 2010.

The 2010 redistricting produced a map that was moderately pro-Republican, while complying with all relevant laws.

Michigan Redistricting: Official Republican State Senate Map Released

Michigan Redistricting: Republican State Senate Map Passed

There are 26 open seats due to term-limits, 7 D and 19 R.  There may be other openings due to retirement or seeking another office.

All current state senators are former state representatives except three (Colbeck, Conyers, Hertel).  This pattern held in the past, and most credible candidates this time are current or former state reps.

I have included election data for the 2014 state senate election, and McCain (2008), Romney (2012), and Trump (2016) results in each district.  More data is available from Republican Michigander and RRH Elections.

Republican Michigander district profiles (see sidebar)

RRH Michigan Senate Data File

The McCain numbers look terrible for Republicans because he collapsed after publicly pulling out of Michigan.  The largest McCain percentage in any Michigan state senate district won by a democrat in the past twelve years is 46.2% in (old) district 31.

Here is a breakdown of the individual races.  State reps years in office are listed after their names, with P meaning present.

1. [Detroit riverfront, Downriver] Safe democrat
SS 2014: 28-72 McCain: 22.0 Romney: 21.5 Trump: XX
Incumbent: Coleman Young (D term-limited)
Analysis: One of five black-majority districts based in Detroit.  Progressive state rep Stephanie Chang (14-P) is running for the D nomination. Other state reps may compete here.

2. [NE Detroit, Grosse Pointes] Safe democrat
SS 2014: 25-71 McCain: 20.1 Romney: 19.3 Trump: XX
Incumbent:  Bert Johnson (D term-limited)
Analysis: One of five black-majority districts based in Detroit.  Johnson has been indicted on felony charges of theft (hiring a fake employee to pay a debt).  The seat is likely to be vacant before 2018.  Several state reps may compete here, including disgraced rep Brian Banks (12-17), who resigned in a plea bargain.

3. [West-central Detroit, Dearborn, Melvindale] Safe democrat
SS 2014: 20-80 McCain: 16.3 Romney: 14.5 Trump: XX
Incumbent: Morris Hood (D term-limited)
Analysis: One of five black-majority districts based in Detroit.  Several state reps may compete here.

4. [Central Detroit, Lincoln Park, Southgate, Allen Park] Safe democrat
SS 2014: 16-84 McCain: 18.5 Romney: 16.7 Trump: XX
Incumbent: Ian Conyers (D)
Analysis: One of five black-majority districts based in Detroit. Virgil Smith resigned after pleading guilty to shooting at his ex-wife.  The 2016 special election was won by Ian Conyers, the great-nephew of Congressman John Conyers.

5. [W Detroit, Dearborn Heights, Garden City, Inkster, Redford] Safe democrat
SS 2014: 18-82 McCain: 20.6 Romney: 18.4 Trump: XX
Incumbent: David Knezek (D)
Analysis: One of five black-majority districts based in Detroit.  Knezek, who is white, won a split primary with 29% in 2014.

6. [SW Wayne, Westland, Taylor] Safe democrat
SS 2014: 38-62 McCain: 34.3 Romney: 35.1 Trump: XX
Incumbent: Hoon-Yung Hopgood (D)
Analysis: Moderate D state rep Robert Kosowski (12-18) is running, and rep Erika Geiss (14-P) is likely to run.  Reps Doug Geiss (08-14) and Darrin Camilleri (16-P) are less likely candidates.

7. [Livonia, Canton, Plymouth, Northville, Wayne city] Lean Republican
SS 2014: 52-48 McCain: 47.3 Romney: 50.0 Trump: 49.0
Incumbent: Patrick Colbeck (R term-limited)
Analysis: R state rep Laura Cox (14-P), who represented more than half of the district on the Wayne County commission, is likely the favorite here.  R state reps. Kurt Heise (10-16) and Jeff Noble (16-P) could also run.  D state reps Dain Slavens (08-14), who lost to Colbeck in 2014, and Kristy Pagan (14-P) could run.

8. [N/E Macomb] Safe Republican
SS 2014: 62-38 McCain: 50.3 Romney: 54.0 Trump: 62.4
Incumbent: Jack Brandenburg (R term-limited)
Analysis: R state rep Peter Lucido (14-P) will run.  Pete Lund (08-14), Ken Goike (10-16), and Tony Forlini (10-16) may run here.

9. [Warren, Roseville, Eastpointe, Fraser, S Clinton] Safe democrat
SS 2014: 32-68 McCain: 37.7 Romney: 36.7 Trump: 44.2
Incumbent: Steven Bieda (D term-limited)
Analysis: D state reps Marilyn Lane (10-16) and Paul Wojno (96-02) will run.  Reps Jon Switalski (08-14), Derek Miller (14-16), Patrick Green (16-P), John Chirkun (14-P), and Harold Haugh (08-14) could run.

10. [Sterling Heights, Macomb, N Clinton] Lean Republican
SS 2014: 63-37 McCain: 47.8 Romney: 51.1 Trump: 58.4
Incumbent: Tory Rocca (R term-limited)
Analysis: R state reps Leon Drolet (00-06), Kim Meltzer (06-10), Jeff Farrington (10-16), and Diane Farrington (16-P) may run, though the Farringtons live just outside the district.  D state reps Henry Yanez (12-18) and William Sowerby (16-P) could run.

11. [Farmington, Southfield, Oak Park, Madison Heights] Safe democrat
SS 2014: 24-76 McCain: 25.8 Romney: 26 Trump: 25.6
Incumbent: Vincent Gregory (D term-limited)
Analysis: Gregory narrowly defeated state reps, Vicki Barnett (08-14) and Ellen Cogen Lipton (08-14) in the 2014 primary.  Both could run again, along with reps Christine Grieg (14-P), Robert Whittenberg (14-P), and Jeremy Moss (14-P).

12. [NE Oakland, Pontiac, Bloomfield Twp.] Safe Republican
SS 2014: 57-43 McCain: 46.4 Romney: 50.2 Trump: 50.3
Incumbent: Jim Marleau (R term-limited)
Analysis: R state reps Bradford Jacobsen (10-16), John Reilly (16-P), Michael McCready (12-18), and Jim Tedder (14-P) could run.  D state house minority leader Tim Greimel (12-18) could run, but low turnout in Pontiac hurts Ds in midterms in this district.

13. [Troy, Rochester, Royal Oak, Birmingham] Safe Republican
SS 2014: 58-42 McCain: 46.5 Romney: 50.4 Trump: 46.9
Incumbent: Marty Knollenberg (R)
Analysis: Knollenberg won a very close primary in 2014.  D state rep Jim Townsend (10-16) could run.

14. [SW Genesee, NW Oakland, Waterford] Safe Republican
SS 2014: 58-42 McCain: 48.5 Romney: 51.9 Trump: 58.9
Incumbent: David Robertson (R term-limited)
Analysis: Surprisingly, Secretary of State Ruth Johnson, who once represented this area as a state rep (98-04), is exploring moving down to the state senate.  If she doesn’t run, state rep Joe Graves (12-18) would likely be the favorite.

15. [SW Oakland] Safe Republican
SS 2014: 58-42 McCain: 48.3 Romney: 52.9 Trump: 52.2
Incumbent: Mike Kowall (R term-limited)
Analysis: Kowall beat Tea Party leader Matt Maddock only 50-43 in the 2014 primary.  Conservative state rep Jim Runestad (14-P) will run, and Maddock will run for his house seat.  Moderate state rep Hugh Crawford (08-14) will run.  Moderate state rep Klint Kesto (12-18) could run.

16. [Jackson, Hillsdale, Branch] Safe Republican
SS 2014: 61-39 McCain: 50.8 Romney: 55.6 Trump: 64.8
Incumbent: Mike Shirkey (R)
Analysis: Shirkey, who led the fights for both Right to Work and Medicaid expansion, may be a candidate for leadership in the state senate.

17. [Monroe, Lenawee] Lean Republican
SS 2014: 51-46 McCain: 47.6 Romney: 49.9 Trump: 61.5
Incumbent: Dale Zorn (R)
Analysis: Rs have held this competitive district for at least the last five elections.  Zorn defeated rep Doug Spade (98-04) in 2014.  Other possible D candidates include state reps Dudley Spade (04-10), Kathy Angerer (04-10), and Bill Lavoy (12-16).

18. [Ann Arbor, Ypsilanti] Safe democrat
SS 2014: 28-72 McCain: 24.9 Romney: 27.0 Trump: 23.6
Incumbent: Rebekah Warren (D term-limited)
Analysis: Ann Arbor loves electing left-wing feminist state senators, including Warren, Liz Brater, Alma Wheeler Smith, and Lana Pollack.  D state reps Jeff Irwin (10-16), David Rutledge (10-16), Adam Zemke (12-18), Yousef Rabhi (16-P), and Ronnie Petersen (16-P) could run.

19. [Calhoun, Barry, Ionia] Safe Republican
SS 2014: 62-38 McCain: 49.6 Romney: 53.4 Trump: 61.8
Incumbent: Mike Nofs (R term-limited)
Analysis: R former rep. Mike Callton (10-16) is likely to run.  Rep. John Bizon (14-P) will run.  Former rep Jase Bolger (08-14) could also run.  D rep Kate Segal (08-14) could run.

20. [Kalamazoo County] Tossup
SS 2014: 45.5-45.4 McCain: 40.1 Romney: 43.3 Trump: 43.2
Incumbent: Margaret O’Brien (R)
Analysis: Kalamazoo County is a battleground, with democrats usually winning the top of the ticket, and Republicans doing better at the bottom.  In 2014, O’Brien (10-14) defeated D state rep Sean McCann (10-14) and Libertarian former state rep Lorence Wenke (04-10).  D state rep Jon Hoadley (14-P) is a likely candidate.

21. [Berrien, Cass, St. Joseph] Safe Republican
SS 2014: 64-36 McCain: 48.1 Romney: 54.6 Trump: 60.5
Incumbent: John Proos (R term-limited)
Analysis: State reps Al Pscholka (10-16), Dave Pagel (12-18), Sharon Tyler (08-12), Matt Lori (08-14) and Kim LaSata (16-P) could run.

22. [Livingston, W Washtenaw] Safe Republican
SS 2014: 59-41 McCain: 52.8 Romney: 57.2 Trump: 59.2
Incumbent: Joe Hune (R term-limited)
Analysis: R state rep Lana Theis (14-P) is likely the favorite. Other possible candidates are state reps Henry Vaupel (14-P), Cindy Denby (08-14), and Bill Rogers (08-14).

23. [Ingham] Safe democrat
SS 2014: 34-66 McCain: 31.9 Romney: 34.5 Trump: 34.6
Incumbent: Curtis Hertel Jr. (D)
Analysis: Hertel, then Ingham Register of Deeds, won in 2014.

24. [Eaton, Clinton, Shiawassee, NE Ingham] Safe Republican
SS 2014: 56-44 McCain: 47.1 Romney: 50.1 Trump: 56.1
Incumbent: Rick Jones (R term-limited)
Analysis: State rep Tom Barrett (14-P) is likely to run.  State reps Brett Roberts (14-P), Ben Glardon (10-16), and Ben Frederick (16-P) could run.  Public affairs specialist Kelly Rossman-McKinney (D) is running.

25. [St. Clair, Sanilac, Huron] Safe Republican
SS 2014: 56-44 McCain: 50.1 Romney: 55.6 Trump: 68.4
Incumbent: Phil Pavlov (R term-limited)
Analysis: State rep Dan Lauwers (12-18) appears to be the favorite.  Reps Andrea LaFontaine (10-16), Pam Hornberger (16-P), Paul Muxlow (10-16), and Shane Hernandez (16-P) could run.

26. [Van Buren, Allegan, Kentwood] Safe Republican
SS 2014: 61-39 McCain: 51.5 Romney: 55.4 Trump: 58.9
Incumbent: Tonya Schuitmaker (R term-limited)
Analysis: Tonya is likely to run for Attorney General. State reps Aric Nesbitt (10-16) and Bob Genetski (08-14) are likely to run.  Reps Beth Griffin (16-P), Mary Whiteford (16-P), Ken Yonker (10-16), and Steve Johnson (16-P) could run.

27. [Flint, central Genesee] Safe democrat
SS 2014: 23-77 McCain: 24.0 Romney: 25.0 Trump: XX
Incumbent: Jim Ananich (D)
Analysis: Ananich, who won a special election in 2013, is now the D state senate minority leader.

28. [N Kent, Walker] Safe Republican
SS 2014: 66-34 McCain: 56.5 Romney: 61.1 Trump: 61.9
Incumbent: Peter MacGregor (R)
Analysis: MacGregor holds one of the safest R districts in Michigan.

29. [Grand Rapids, SE Kent] Tossup
SS 2014: 58-42 McCain: 42.8 Romney: 46.8 Trump: 41.9
Incumbent: Dave Hildenbrand (R term-limited)
Analysis: This district has been trending away from Rs at the top of the ticket, but has more R strength downballot.   D state rep Winnie Brinks (12-18) seems to be the favorite.  Dave LaGrand, 2006 and 2010 D nominee, is now a state rep (16-P).  D state chairman Brandon Dillon (10-15) seems unlikely to run. R state reps Chris Afendoulis (14-P) seems to be the R favorite. Former R state rep Lisa Lyons (10-16) would be a strong candidate, but is now Kent County Clerk.

30. [Ottawa County] Safe Republican
SS 2014: 71-29 McCain: 62.1 Romney: 67.4 Trump: 66.3
Incumbent: Arlan Meekhof (R term-limited)
Analysis: Ottawa County is usually the most Republican in Michigan.  R state reps Roger Victory (12-18), Daniella Garcia (14-P), and Joe Haveman (08-14) are expected to run.  Reps Amanda Price (10-16) and Jim Lilly (16-P) could also run.

31. [Bay, Tuscola, Lapeer] Tossup
SS 2014: 55-45 McCain: 47.2 Romney: 52.0 Trump: 64.4
Incumbent: Mike Green (R term-limited)
Analysis: This district has alternated between parties every 8-10 years since the 1980s.  Mike Green narrowly won the 2014 primary 50-46 over state rep. Kevin Daley of Lapeer County.  Daley has already declared for 2018.  Conservative state rep Gary Glenn (14-P) recently moved to Bay County and could run.  D state rep Charles Brunner (10-16), a moderate from Bay City, is likely to run.

32. [Saginaw, W Genesee] Lean Republican
SS 2014: 54-46 McCain: 43.1 Romney: 45.9 Trump: 53.2
Incumbent: Ken Horn (R)
Analysis: Incredibly, despite D dominance of Saginaw County, Rs have won this district for the last seven elections.  Ds tend to nominate black state reps from Saginaw who don’t appeal to the white union voters who dominate the rest of the district.  D state rep Vanessa Guerra (14-P) could run.

33. [Montcalm, Isabella, Gratiot, Mecosta, Clare] Safe Republican
SS 2014: 57-43 McCain: 46.8 Romney: 51.5 Trump: 62.3
Incumbent: Judy Emmons (R term-limited)
Analysis: State rep Rick Outman (10-16) is likely to run.  Reps Joel Johnson (10-16), James Lower (16-P), Kevin Cotter (10-16), Roger Hauck (16-P), and Jim McBryde (90-98) could run.

34. [Muskegon, Newaygo, Oceana] Tossup
SS 2014: 56-44 McCain: 39.8 Romney: 46.0 Trump: 55.5
Incumbent: Geoff Hansen (R term-limited)
Analysis: R state rep Jon Bumstead (10-16) of Newaygo, an early endorser of Trump, is already running.  State rep. Holly Hughes (10-12, 14-18) of Muskegon County is also likely to run.  Bumstead is somewhat more conservative.  D state reps Marcia Hovey Wright (10-16) and Terry Sabo (16-P) could run.

35. [NC Lower Peninsula] Safe Republican
SS 2014: 60-40 McCain: 49.8 Romney: 54.5 Trump: 64.6
Incumbent: Darwin Booher (R term-limited)
Analysis: R state reps. Ray Franz (10-16) and Bruce Rendon (10-16) are likely to run.  Reps Phil Potvin (10-16), Curt VanderWall (16-P), and Michelle Hoitenga (16-P) could run.

36. [NE Lower Peninsula, Midland] Safe Republican
SS 2014: 61-39 McCain: 50.8 Romney: 56.0 Trump: 65.4
Incumbent: Jim Stamas (R)
Analysis: This district was competitive in 2002, but has moved right since then.  Stamas is a leadership candidate.

37. [NW Lower Peninsula, E Upper Peninsula] Safe Republican
SS 2014: 61-39 McCain: 51.9 Romney: 56.8 Trump: 61.1
Incumbent: Wayne Schmidt (R)
Analysis: Schmidt won a bitter primary in 2014.  He may get a challenge from the right in the 2018 primary.

38. [Upper Peninsula excluding Mackinac, Chippewa, Luce] Tossup
SS 2014: 62-38 McCain: 46.2 Romney: 51.0 Trump: 59.0
Incumbent: Tom Casperson (R term-limited)
Analysis: This district was held for Ds for decades until Casperson won it in 2010.  R state rep Ed McBroom (10-16) of Dickinson County will run.  Moderate D state rep Scott Dianda (12-18) from western UP will run.

Summary of Ratings:
Safe democrat: 11
Toss-up: 5
Lean Republican: 4
Safe Republican: 18

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39 Comments

  • Conservative First February 21, 2017 at 7:08 pm

    For comparison, here are Bill Ballenger’s ratings, which strike me as absurd.
    http://www.theballengerreport.com/campaign-2018-changes-likely-michigan-senate/

    • rdelbov February 21, 2017 at 8:44 pm

      Great GOP map–The GOP IMO look to be at 24 to 26.

    • Red Oaks February 22, 2017 at 10:15 pm

      Yeah, Ballenger is extremely generous to Democrats. Far too many tossup or lean R seats. Dave Robertson’s seat as a tossup is hilarious.


      MI-03 Castle voter who now says Give Trump a chance

      • Republican Michigander February 28, 2017 at 10:04 am

        I think Ballenger is thinking about the 2002 era with some of those ratings. Robertson’s old district (a pickup from D’s) was 50/50 and had D strongholds (Trump being an exception) of Mt Morris (even Trump lost that), Vienna Twp, Burton, Thetford Twp, and Richfield Twp. Those were dropped for the 2014 elections post redistricting.


        MI-08 - Michigan is a red state again. We need a 50 state strategy and an 83 county strategy.

  • Conservative First February 21, 2017 at 8:54 pm

    The MIRS podcast discusses some of these races.
    http://mirsnews.podbean.com/e/mirs-monday-feb-20-2017/

  • Jon February 21, 2017 at 10:06 pm

    So post 2020, unless the incumbent in #5 retires / runs for office / defeated in primary before then, he gets double bunked with the new incumbent in #3?

    Hopefully they can swap territory around between #1 & #2, and #4 so it’s no longer a micro baconator.


    45, M, MO-02

    • FreedomJim February 22, 2017 at 12:55 pm

      They probably need to keep five black seats in Wayne.

      • Jon February 22, 2017 at 8:16 pm

        Going to be impossible with Detriot population loses; and #5 can’t really be called a black seat with it being represented by a White Democrat anyway.


        45, M, MO-02

        • rdelbov February 22, 2017 at 9:27 pm

          The two suburban D seats north of Detroit are AA?

          • shamlet February 22, 2017 at 9:29 pm

            No. Though it’s possible #11 could be remade as a black-majority seat next census if population trends continue.


            R, MD-7. Process is more important than outcome.

            • rdelbov February 22, 2017 at 10:16 pm

              Of course the way things go around Detroit area even if the AA population makes up a majority of the D primary base that does not guarantee an AA member.

              Strong GOP area around Pontiac as even that seat is not overwhelmed by it. I like my St Clair and MaComb in the same CD idea more and more. Then the thumb attached to Oakland.

    • Conservative First February 22, 2017 at 1:20 pm

      Knezek will be term-limited in 2022, assuming he wins in 2018. Anyhow, he lives in Dearborn Heights.
      I don’t think it will be possible to keep five black-majority seats in Wayne County, as the existing seats are all like 50-51% black (which is part of the reason they look so weird). They will either have to draw Southfield/Oak Park in Oakland into one of them, or drop one below 50% black. The latter would probably be easier if one seat is already held by a non-black.

      • shamlet February 22, 2017 at 1:25 pm

        I agree; with the way Detroit continues to empty out there’s probably a decent chance none of the current 5 are majority-black by 2020 (or are so far under population they wouldn’t be if brought up to target) I imagine SD-5 just gets subsumed into the other 4 and things stay pretty much as-is. The way to recreate a 5th black-majority district is probably by making SD-11 black-majority with an arm to Pontiac.


        R, MD-7. Process is more important than outcome.

        • FreedomJim February 22, 2017 at 7:43 pm

          I hope that works. It would certainly make the Detroit districts neater.

        • Red Oaks February 22, 2017 at 10:32 pm

          A Southfield to Pontiac district is very similar to what Gary Peters represented in the 1990s. Unfortunately for the GOP such a drawing would probably flip two other Oakland county based seats to the Democrats. If the entire southeast corner of Oakland is kept in one district (as opposed to currently being mostly in the 11th with some in the Republican 13th) then that seat will certainly go Democratic. To the west of Southfield is Farmington/Farmington Hills which has about 90,000 people and large black/Asian/jewish populations and has been safely Democratic since about 2004. Bordering Farmington Hills is liberal West Bloomfield to the north (about 65,000 people) and Novi to the west (nearly 60,000 people) which is not really Republican leaning at all anymore. This new 15th district would probably go Democratic too even if only one of Novi or West Bloomfield was in it. Thus there would be 3 Democratic state senate seats in Oakland as a result.

          To draw a 5th majority black seat that is partly outside Wayne county I would prefer a district that pairs eastern parts of the City of Detroit with Warren/Centerline/Eastpointe from Macomb County. This would slam the most Democratic parts of Macomb into a Democratic vote sink and possibly allow the GOP to sweep the rest of Macomb if the splits are handled right.


          MI-03 Castle voter who now says Give Trump a chance

          • rdelbov February 23, 2017 at 10:26 am

            I think the GOP has the plan for Oakland senate seats. The Gov race in 2018 will determine if the GOP will have to cede any more seats to the Ds.

            If the Ds win the Governorship a fair compromise would be one less R seat in Wayne and one more D seat in Oakland.

            • Jon February 23, 2017 at 6:50 pm

              Shouldn’t that be one less D seat in Wayne? Republicans currently only control #7 within Wayne county.


              45, M, MO-02

              • Red Oaks February 23, 2017 at 7:08 pm

                Well, under an overall compromise map Republicans would likely give up a net of one seat and what Rdelbov proposes is one way to accomplish that. It’s pretty easy to draw Wayne County so that Republicans can’t win any Senate seats. Just keep Livonia separate from Northville/Plymouth and it’s a clean sweep. The GOP is already at a 13-2 deficit in the County Commission and an 18-2 deficit in the State House.


                MI-03 Castle voter who now says Give Trump a chance

                • Greyhound February 23, 2017 at 7:10 pm

                  If Detroit does drop to 4 VRA Black seats, would it be possible to draw a 2nd winnable seat in Wayne from the Downriver parts of 1 & 6?


                  R, 26, CA-18. Nothing smooths over divisions like victory.

                  • Conservative First February 23, 2017 at 8:03 pm

                    Not likely. The best you could do would be
                    Westland/Livonia/Plymouth
                    Northville to Grosse Ile
                    It would likely be a dummymander.
                    The way the population is going, there will likely need to be a district that breaks Wayne County, though.

                    • Jon February 24, 2017 at 12:51 am

                      I’m thinking population loses are even worse than that; instead of one of the existing seven seats in Wayne crossing the county line, it’s going to need to be moved either to the exurbs of Detroit or perhaps another region of the state entirely as Wayne gets cut to six seats.

                      Most definitely a dummymander to attempt to have 2 seats in Wayne.


                      45, M, MO-02

                    • rdelbov February 24, 2017 at 8:04 am

                      Yes maybe six and a fraction with the fraction being GOP area added to a GOP seat in Oakland?

                      In a compromise the GOP has to give up something?

                      I might add state courts drawing the maps could lean GOP

                    • Greyhound February 24, 2017 at 2:55 pm

                      How would it be a dummymander? I’m talking about carving a potentially winnable seat out of 2 D ones in the Southern end of the county. Its not like the 7th could be taking any of the territory anyways given MI’s map-drawing laws.


                      R, 26, CA-18. Nothing smooths over divisions like victory.

                    • rdelbov February 24, 2017 at 3:12 pm

                      Will Wayne qualify for 6 or 6.5 or 7 seats in 2021? With a trifecta or with a court map I think the GOP gets one seat in Wayne

                    • Conservative First February 24, 2017 at 4:05 pm

                      @ Jon and Rdelbov
                      6.5 senate districts in Wayne seems most likely given population trends. District 7 has flat population (and has large enough population that it can lost Wayne city), so it shouldn’t be too hard to keep together.

                    • Conservative First February 24, 2017 at 4:16 pm

                      @Greyhound
                      Current district 6 is 34.3% McCain
                      A pure downriver district can get to 40% McCain. Trump may have narrowly won it. Given that we lost HD 23 in 2016, this district wouldn’t go R.
                      What I suggested would result in 40.7% McCain with district 7 at 44.8% McCain.
                      A Monroe/downriver district can get to 45.4% McCain, which is pretty good but certainly vulnerable.

                    • rdelbov February 24, 2017 at 4:51 pm

                      With GOP control I would do 1.5 R seats in Wayne county–without 1R seat.

                • Conservative First February 23, 2017 at 8:04 pm

                  Colbeck’s old Plymouth to Grosse Ile district elected Republicans.

                  • Red Oaks February 23, 2017 at 8:37 pm

                    It did elect Republicans last decade but 2006 was very close with a GOP incumbent and 2010 was a wave year. With the way Canton is stampeding leftward I wouldn’t bet on it happening again. Democrats are now winning the Canton/Van Buren state house district by landslide margins and hold 6 out of 7 elected township offices in Canton. State Senator Pat Colbeck is from Canton and he lost the township as an incumbent in the favorable year of 2014. While Republicans have been winning the Plymouth/Canton county commission seat I suspect that’s mainly because the race is so low profile that Canton residents don’t mind voting in an R to be one of 2 on the commission and local Dems don’t seem to be trying hard in that race. The only hope for a Senate victory in such a seat would be to suddenly start winning Trump like margins in the southern tier and drastically reduce the bleeding in Canton but Republicans still lost the open 23rd house seat (which contains much of the southern tier) in 2016.


                    MI-03 Castle voter who now says Give Trump a chance

          • FreedomJim February 24, 2017 at 6:41 pm

            That makes sense. If Wayne has too many people for six seats and too few for seven, it would make sense to send one of the VRA seats into Oakland or Macomb. That would help shore up the GOP seats in the northern suburbs.

  • rdelbov February 21, 2017 at 10:50 pm

    The state senate map more or less gives you my idea for congressional redistricting. There will likely be 13 seats in 2021 or about 3 current senate seats.

    MI 10 will be 8-10-25
    MI11 will be 12-13 plus rest of Thumb
    MI8 will be Oakland part 14-15 plus Livingston county.

    You will have to play around a bit but only one senate seat of each major county needs to be attached to Wayne. To avoid double crosses we must give up Wayne county Livonia/Canton area

  • Republican Michigander February 27, 2017 at 11:49 am

    SD-22 – Joe Hune’s going to be missed. He’ll always do his job until it’s done, but I think he’s looking forward to going back to the farm and being dad. Bill Rogers is now Genoa Township Supervisor. He just got elected there last November, and I don’t think he’s going to job hop after two years. That’s not his style. I think Lana is the favorite for the seat. I don’t think Vaupel and Lana would run against each other. Cindy Denby works for Vaupel. I haven’t heard any indication that she’s interested in the senate seat, but I haven’t talked to her about it either.

    SD-24. – Tom Barrett and Tom Leonard are longtime best friends who won’t run against one another. Barrett was recently at a Shiawassee County Lincoln Day Dinner, so I think Barrett may be running for this seat. Rumor I’ve heard is that Tom Leonard may run for AG.


    MI-08 - Michigan is a red state again. We need a 50 state strategy and an 83 county strategy.

    • Red Oaks February 27, 2017 at 7:24 pm

      Personally I would prefer that incumbents from competitive House districts who are not term-limited in 2018 (like Tom Barrett) stay in the House as long as possible because it’s always possible that chamber could flip while the Senate should stay safely GOP no matter what. However there’s not much we can do if they really want a Senate seat.


      MI-03 Castle voter who now says Give Trump a chance

      • Conservative First February 27, 2017 at 7:47 pm

        I’d prefer that the seat open up in a midterm rather than a presidential election.

        • Red Oaks February 27, 2017 at 8:22 pm

          Historically I would be inclined to agree with you but:
          1. I’m pessimistic about the overall environment in 2018 for Rs especially considering it will have been 8 years of GOP trifectas and the opposition will be fired up.
          2. Maybe in the new Trump lead Republican Party the old rule about Presidential years being worse for us won’t apply like it used to. A lot of rural voters seem to like Trump and cast straight tickets for downballot races too in 2016. Perhaps they won’t be as enthused about voting for GOP legislative candidates in a midterm where there is no Donald on the ballot.
          3. Several of the competitive House seat incumbents I’m thinking of were first elected in 2016 and won’t be termed out until 2022 which will be a midterm too and the lines will be redrawn then anyway. Specifically I would mention folks like Diana Farrington (30), Shane Hernandez (83), Roger Hauck (99), and Curt VanderWall (101). They all are first-termers living in Senate seats that will be open in 2018.


          MI-03 Castle voter who now says Give Trump a chance

          • Conservative First February 28, 2017 at 11:11 am

            I cast a wide net listing possible candidates, but I’d be surprised if Diana Farrington, Roger Hauck, or Curt VanderWall run. Hernandez may be a little more likely due to ideology, but Ds put zero effort into his open seat two years ago.

  • Republican Michigander February 27, 2017 at 12:35 pm

    The interesting things here are this:
    1. Trump did very well in MOST swing-swingish and lean areas. Compare what the dems had in 2006/2008 with this.
    2. Snyder is highly disliked in a lot of those Trump areas right now.

    Prelim rankings.
    Safe D – 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 9, 11, 18, 23, 27 – 11 Districts
    Lean D – None
    Tossup – 20, 29, 32, 34, 38 – 5 Districts
    Lean R – 7, 10, 13, 14, 17 , 24, 31 – 7 Districts
    Safe R – 8, 12, 15, 16, 19, 21, 22, 25, 26, 28, 30, 33, 35, 36, 37 – 15 districts

    Comments
    SD-6 – I’d at least get some organizing done here for a challenge. I don’t expect to win it, but with Trump’s gains here, it’s work putting some work in here – for top-ticket as much as anything else.
    SD-7 – Did we stop the Trump bleeding in NW Wayne? Can we stop the R bleeding overall in Canton? Do we keep Trump’s gains in Livonia? I think Cox can do very well here. Inter-party infighting is a major issue here as well.
    SD-9 – Same thing with SD-6 applies here.
    SD-10 – I debated whether to go tossup or Lean R here.
    SD-12 – The Safe/lean border. If Pontiac has an 08 style turnout, it’s trouble. Trump had some bleeding in Bloomfield area, but the most northern part of the county was fine for him.
    SD-13 – I’m a lot more cautious about this district. If Knollenberg wasn’t an incumbent, I’d call it a toss-up. Trump was a disaster here. Even without Trump, we’re bleeding in Troy. Royal Oak is a fairly strong democrat base to begin with. Birmingham can go either way. Rochester is still solid, but not what it used to be.
    SD-14 – I have this as lean, although safe for Ruth Johnson if she’s in. There’s some D tradition still in Flint burbs and the water issue will hurt a MI R (or most R’s not named Trump).
    SD-15 – I really hope Runestad runs. Good guy.
    SD-17 – This used to be a big tossup area although the D’s farm club here isn’t what it was, and Zorn beat their best in Spade.
    SD-19 – Safe/lean border. Barry and Ionia should outvote anything the D’s do in Calhoun.
    SD-20 – We’ve had no business keeping this district as long as we’ve had. Credit the candidate quality. O’Brien, Schuitmaker, Tom George.
    SD-24 – I have this as lean. Eaton is a swing county. Clinton leans R, but not by much. Obama won it. Granholm won it. NE Ingham is swingish. Shiawassee voted for the presidential winner the past several elections and can go either way. This district has a LOT of state workers, so they will vote in midterms. There’s some good potential candidates here as well. Barrett’s won in districts that voted against the top of the ticket before.
    SD-29 – This district, like the 20th, has been on borrowed time for a long time. We got lucky with Bill Hardiman and Dave Hildenbrand. I’m just glad Kentwood is no longer in this district.
    SD-31 – I have this as lean R, although it’s at the lean/tossup border. It’s a traditional 50/50 district that used to lean more D. Good candidates on both sides made the difference. Joel Gougeon for the R’s won the district he had no business winning. Jim Barcia was the perfect candidate for the D’s and beat a very strong Mike Green to win. Mike Green beat a strong candidate to win. I think this district moved enough to the right at the top of the ticket to now get this out of tossup category (more than just Trump Democrats here). Both sides have a good farm club here.
    SD-32 – I have it as tossup, but it’s at the lean/tossup border. The R’s here have their act together primary time and usually nominate a populist in a district filled with Trump democrats. The D’s usually nominate a city liberal. If they run an A.T. Frank or Lew Dodak type, then it’s going to be a real tough battle.
    SD-33 – Borderline Safe/Lean – Until D’s show me they can win downticket in Isabella County, I’m not going to move this district.
    SD-34 – The same story in the 32nd applies here although the D’s have their act together more here. There was more Trump democrats than I thought in Muskegon as well. I’m not counting on Trump numbers in an offyear in Muskegon however.
    SD-36 – This one wasn’t safe until recently. I have it on the safe-lean border, but the dems have been just decimated in Alpena County the past few years. Safe R unless Joel Sheltrown runs, but even with Sheltrown, I’d put it as lean R.
    SD-38 – Despite the Trump numbers and trend, I can’t put a UP district without the eastern counties as anything except a tossup. Gogebic and Marquette County alone can carry it for the D’s. Dianda and Kivela are strong candidates and moderate enough to appeal to swing voters. If we have an R strong in Dickinson, Menominee, and Delta Counties, we can still keep this in a neutral year.

    CF’s Summary of Ratings:
    Safe democrat: 11 (agree)
    Toss-up: 5 (Agree)
    Lean Republican: 4 (I have 7)
    Safe Republican: 18 (I have 15)


    MI-08 - Michigan is a red state again. We need a 50 state strategy and an 83 county strategy.

  • Conservative First July 25, 2017 at 11:49 pm

    I updated this post. No ratings changes, but many candidates have filed or made their intention to run clear. Interesting primaries are shaping up in districts 15, 30, 31, 34, and others.

    • Republican Michigander July 26, 2017 at 12:52 am

      “Analysis: R state rep Lana Theis (14-P) is likely the favorite. Other possible candidates are state reps Henry Vaupel (14-P), Cindy Denby (08-14), and Bill Rogers (08-14).”

      Lana Theis is in. Hank Vaupel is not running and endorsed Lana. I’ll bet money Cindy Denby is not running. If she was, Doc would probably support Cindy as would some of the other Fowlerville people I know on that committee. I’ll be surprised if Bill Rogers (now Genoa Twp Supervisor) runs, especially as many of his State Rep supporting folks endorsed Lana or are on her host committee for the fundraiser.

      Also – Jim Tedder is running in SD-12


      MI-08 - Michigan is a red state again. We need a 50 state strategy and an 83 county strategy.

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