Michigan Republicans held their posts statewide, winning the Attorney General and Secretary of State races and pushing Governor Rick Snyder to reelection. Meanwhile, Ann Arbor district-level Democratic politicians maintained their hold on the U.S. House of Representatives, Michigan House of Representatives and Michigan State Senate.
Michigan Attorney General Bill Schuette (R) will retain his seat, besting Democrat Mark Totten. As of 2 a.m. Wednesday morning, unofficial election results showed that Schuette led Totten 52.1 percent to 44.2 percent.
“I will continue to serve as a voice for the constitution, because there are cops and firefighters who worked hard in a tough city whose pensions were at risk,” Schuette said in a speech at the Renaissance Center Tuesday night.
“I am an optimist at the core, and this election is all about tomorrows,” Schuette said. “I am confident Michigan’s best tomorrows are just ahead. “
Schuette, who outspent Totten by a near six-to-one margin during the campaign, has said he would like to be a “voice for victims” of all crimes in his second term.
Formerly a federal prosecutor, Totten emphasized his desire to protect Michigan citizens from economic crime. He also aimed to better support women’s and students’ rights, two areas in which he said Schuette failed.
Secretary of State
Secretary of State Ruth Johnson (R) kept her seat against Democratic challenger Godfrey Dillard. Unofficial election results indicated Johnson led Dillard 53.5 percent to 42.9 percent at 2 a.m.
Johnson’s reelection campaign emphasized her work in customer service and expanding the department’s online services. She previously worked as the clerk and register for deeds in Oakland County.
Dillard, a Detroit attorney, announced his campaign in August. Following his defeat, he said his campaign stint was still impactful.
“I’m not discouraged,” Dillard said. “I think as I go forward I’ll keep looking for ways I can serve the citizens of Michigan.”
Michigan State Senate
State Sen. Rebekah Warren (D–St. Clair Shores) won her second term over Republican challenger Terry Linden.
Warren has served Ann Arbor as a state senator since 2011. Previously, Warren served in the Michigan House of Representatives from 2007 to 2010.
In her tenure, Warren has focused on women’s rights and environmental protection. In September, she co-introduced legislation to require all health insurance companies to provide the option to purchase abortion service coverage. She has also sponsored legislation to help sexual assault survivors, gender pay equity and works to extend workplace family medical leave.
Warren is invested in improving the environment. In May, she demanded with other politicians to cease oil and gas drilling in nearby Scio Township.
Warren has also fought to improve state support for both K-12 and higher education.
Linden, her challenger, was not available to media during the campaign.
Michigan House of Representatives
State representative Jeff Irwin (D–Ann Arbor) has won reelection for a third term, defeating Republican challenger John Spisak.
Irwin has pushed for greater state involvement in all levels of education and has argued that improving the state’s educational institutions can be a means of economic growth. In April 2013, Irwin proposed a bill to extend in-state tuition equality to undocumented students, a move hailed by on-campus student groups.
“I think it’s good state policy to try to keep those people here in Michigan, giving them opportunity to contribute to our economy and communities,” Irwin said in a 2013 interview with the Daily.
He has also been an advocate for improved environmental protections, and supports increased investment in infrastructure to aid economic recovery.
Spisak, an Ann Arbor resident, is a stay-at-home father who previously owned small businesses. He prioritized investing in roads, bridges and other infrastructure. He also campaigned to better education.
Daily News Editor Rachel Premack and Daily Staff Reporters Ben Atlas, Shoham Geva and Genevieve Hummer contributed to this report.