A clear call has been made in all State House elections, and every incumbent facing a primary challenge has won. Battleground seats may still shift in the next several weeks based on polling data and local fundraising, but for the most part the key House races are locked in. Anywhere from 9 to 15 seats are expected to be competitive as Democrats look to make a major effort to win a majority in the Michigan House, a few of the primary results may have an impact on whether those seats will be viable in November for one party or the other. In other races where one party or the other has a decided advantage in the general election, the winner of the primary will almost certainly win the November election.
Below is a report of contested Michigan Congressional races, and of all contests for the Michigan legislature.
Michigan Congressional Races
Republican Jack Bergman knocked off two seasoned veteran politicians in Tom Casperson and Jason Allen to win the GOP primary. He will face former Democratic Party Chair Lon Johnson in November.
Incumbent Congressman Tim Walberg easily fended off a primary challenge from fellow Republican Doug North. Walberg will go up against Democrat Gretchen Driskell in November.
Paul Mitchell spent a great deal of money two years ago on a failed attempt to reach Congress. This time the millionaire’s investment paid off as he stunned the early favorite, State Senator Phil Pavlov, to win the GOP primary. Former State Representative Frank Accavitti will be the Democratic nominee in this heavily Republican district.
Longtime incumbent Congressman John Conyers will almost undoubtedly be reelected for another term after defeating Democratic challenger Janice Winfrey in the primary.
Freshman Congresswoman Brenda Lawrence easily defeated two Democratic primary challengers and she will almost certainly win reelection in the fall.
Michigan State Senate
After the resignation of former State Senator Virgil Smith, III, a number of hopefuls entered the Democratic primary to win the right to fill out the remainder of Smith’s term. Although there were 9 total Democrats in the primary, the race really came down to Ian Conyers and former State Representative Fred Durhal, Jr. Conyers took the prize, winning with 35% of the vote.
Michigan State House
Incumbent Democrat Brian Banks staved off a tough challenge from Pamela Sossi, but hung on to win by garnering 49% to her 32% with the remainder being split between four other Democrats.
Former State Representative Bettie Cook Scott defeated Carla Tinsley-Smith by less than fifty votes in the Democratic primary and will be strongly favored to win in November.
Incumbent Wendell Byrd garnered only 45% of the vote, but it was enough to win with the remainder being spread between 6 Democratic challengers.
Rose Mary Robinson won reelection by defeating 6 Democratic challengers. She received 58% of the vote.
Rep. Fred Durhal, III won a victory, though it seemed closer than some of the others since he had only one Democratic opponent. He defeated Cynthia Johnson 57%-43%.
Representative Stephanie Chang crushed her multiple Democratic opponents by receiving 71% of the votes cast in the Democratic primary.
Incumbent LaTanya Garrett easily defeated Bernard Thompson 82%-18%.
Incumbent Sherry Gay-Dagnogo was unopposed in her Primary Election this cycle.
Sylvia Santana, spouse of current but term-limited Representative Harvey Santana, notched 49% of the Democratic vote – enough to win a 7-way primary.
Representative Leslie Love won a decisive victory against 3 Democratic challengers by receiving 68% of the vote.
The shocking passing of State Representative Julie Plawecki, who still had two terms left and would have easily won her second bid, left a vacancy for the Democratic Party to fill. Jewell Jones has stepped-in to fill that seat, and ran unopposed. If Jones wins in November – in this solidly-Democratic district – he will be the youngest member ever to serve in the Michigan House.
Incumbent Erika Geiss was leading challenger Edward Martell 77%-23% with 89% of the precincts reporting – enough to give her the win.
With 69% of the precincts reporting, Incumbent Frank Liberati was well ahead of challenger Rebecca Reed by a margin of 76%-24%.
Cara Clemente, spouse of current incumbent Paul Clemente, won a 4-way Democratic primary and is heavily favored to be elected in November.
Abdullah Hammoud won a 6-way Democratic primary to succeed Rep. George Darany in this heavily Democratic-leaning seat.
House Minority Whip Bob Kosowski was unopposed in his Primary. He will face Republican Matt Morrow in November in this safe Democratic seat.
State Representative Bill LaVoy was unopposed in his Primary, and will face Republican Joseph Bellino in November in a seat that Republicans are expected to target heavily.
Kevin Hertel, son of former Speaker of the House Curtis Hertel and brother to State Senator Curtis Hertel, Jr., won this 3-way Democratic primary by a wide margin. He is heavily favored to win the seat in the fall that is currently held by term-limited Representative Sarah Roberts.
Republican Jeff Noble has won a nailbiter against fellow Republican Chris Roosen for the seat currently held by Representative Kurt Heise. He will face off against Democrat Colleen Pobur in what may turn into a tough fight in November.
Incumbent Kristy Pagan was unopposed in her Primary, and will face Republican Derek Moss in November in this safely-Democratic seat.
Incumbent John Chirkun held off a challenge from fellow Democrat Nicole Reid by a margin of 68%-32%.
In one of the most hotly contested primaries of the night, Democrat Darrin Camilleri narrowly defeated Sherry Berecz 36%-33%, with fellow Democrat Steve Rzeppa just behind at 26%. On the Republican side of the ballot, Chamber of Commerce-endorsed Bob Howey won easily with 77% of the vote in a 3-way primary. This seat, currently held by Republican Representative Patrick Somerville, will be a major battleground for both parties in November.
Steve Marino easily won the Republican primary, garnering 80% of the vote in a 3-way primary. He will face Democrat Dana Camphous-Peterson in November in what will be a hotly contested race.
Incumbent Henry Yanez handily defeated Democratic challenger Jacqueline Sproles 79%-21%. Yanez will face Republican Naumovski. Although this has been a battleground seat in the past, Yanez – running for his third and final term – has the decided advantage.
Democratic candidate Jim Ellison will face Republican challenger Randy LeVasseur in this seat vacated by term-limited Democratic member Jim Townsend in this heavily-Democratic seat.
Incumbent Robert Wittenberg was unopposed in his Primary, and will square-off against Republican challenger Kyle Forrest in November.
This seat, currently vacant due to the resignation of Rep. Derek Miller who was selected to become the Macomb County Treasurer, is very likely to be won by the Democrats in November. Patrick Green won both the Democratic Primary for the term starting in January, but also the special election to fill out the remainder of Rep. Miller’s term. Therefore, he will likely be getting about a month’s head start on the rest of next year’s freshman State Representatives.
House Minority Leader Tim Greimel was unopposed in his Primary bid. He will face Garren Griffith in this Democratic seat that encompasses Pontiac and Auburn Hills.
As of 12:30am, the Republican primary to succeed outgoing Representative Jeff Farrington was still too close to call. Diana Farrington, Rep. Farrington’s spouse, clung to a 54-vote lead with all precincts reporting. However, with absentee ballots yet to be counted, her closest rival – Michael Shallal – could not be counted out. On the Democratic side, Michael Notte won a landslide victory against his sold Democratic opponent. Regardless of which Republican wins the primary, this will be a battleground seat in November.
Democrat William Sowerby won a decisive 78%-22% victory to win the right to be on the ballot in November for this seat being vacated by term-limited Representative Marilyn Lane. Mr. Sowerby will face Republican Lisa Valerio-Nowc, although the seat’s Democratic lean makes him a heavy favorite.
Republican Pamela Hornberger won a tough 3-way race in this seat that belongs to term-limited Representative Andrea LaFontaine. She is a heavy favorite to win the general election in November.
Representative Ken Goike is term-limited, and as this article is written, Republican Jeff Yaroch looks like he will be the nominee after holding off five other GOP candidates. This seat is heavily Republican.
Incumbent Sheldon Neely was unopposed in his Primary election, and is expected to return after November’s election in this Flint-based district.
Incumbent Jeremy Moss was unopposed in his Primary candidacy to run for his 2nd term, and is expected to win his bid in November as well.
Republican Pete Lucido ran unopposed in his Primary. He will face Democratic candidate Diane Young in November in this safely-Republican Macomb County seat.
Democratic incumbent Christine Greig was unopposed in her Primary election. She will face Mitch Swoboda in November in this Democratic-leaning seat.
Incumbent Kathy Crawford held off a challenge from fellow Republican Carson Lauffer by a 69%-31% victory. She is heavily favored to be re-elected in November.
Incumbent Republican Klint Kesto was unopposed in his Primary contest to run for his 3rd and final term in the House. He will face Democratic challenger Michael Stack in November in one of several races-to-watch in a tossup district.
Incumbent Republican Representative Mike McCready was unopposed in his Primary, and will face Nicole Bedi in this safely-Republican district.
Representative Martin Howrylak crushed GOP challenger Ryan Manier 83%-17%. Howrylak will face Democrat Cyndi Peltonen in November. This has been a targeted seat in the past, but Howrylak’s incumbency and moderate voting record will make this a tough pick-up for the Democrats.
Incumbent Republican Lana Theis, unopposed in her Primary, is expected to retrun after November in this solidly-Republican district in the Brighton/Livingston County area.
Incumbent Republican Representative Jim Tedder, also unopposed in August, faces Democratic challenger Ted Villella in November in this Republican-based district.
Incumbent Republican Jim Runestad, unopposed in his Primary, will more than likely return in November in this safe Republican seat.
Incumbent Republican Mike Webber faces Ted Golden, wherein Webber is the clear favorite in Republican Rochester Hills, the base of this district.
As this report is being written, the GOP contest to succeed outgoing Representative Bradford Jacobsen is still too close to call. John Reilly currently leads Joe Kent by 31 votes with 100% of all precincts reporting. However, absentee ballots might still sway it the other way. Whoever wins the Republican primary is practically a shoo-in in November in this heavily GOP district.
Incumbent Republican Dr. Hank Vaupel, a veteran veterinarian, unopposed in his August contest, is expected to come back to Lansing in November in this solid Republican seat in Livingston county.
Incumbent Democratic Representative Pam Faris, a popular local fixture, will return to Lansing in November for her final term in this Democratic-favored Genesee County seat.
Democratic Incumbent Phil Phelps, of Flint, unopposed in August, should come back to Lansing in November.
Democrat Tim Sneller, currently a staffer for Representative Charles Smiley, now has a good chance of winning his boss’s job after he defeated Raymond Freiberger for the Democratic nomination in this Democratic-leaning seat.
Incumbent Joe Graves swatted away two Republican challengers and will almost certainly win re-election in November for his third term.
In a nail-biter, relative newcomer Donna Lasinski defeated veteran campaigner Barb Fuller by just over 300 votes in the Democratic primary. This seat, being vacated by Gretchen Driskell, will be a top target in November. Republican Randy Clark was uncontested in the GOP primary.
Democrat Yousef Rabhi won a strong victory over fellow Democrat Steven Kwasny and will almost definitely be elected in November to replace outgoing Representative Jeff Irwin.
AFSCME International Representative Ronnie Peterson outfought a large Democratic field to win the primary. He will be a strong favorite to win the seat being vacated by term-limited Representative David Rutledge.
Returning Ann Arbor State Rep Adam Zemke was unopposed in August, facing Republican Bob Baird in this overwhelmingly-Democratic district.
Incumbent State Rep Jason Sheppard and his November opponent Tom Redmond were both unopposed in August. This is another on the list of races-to-watch, as Dems are expected to target this seat in November.
Republican Bronna Kahle won a three way primary and will take on Democrat Harvey Schmidt in November. This seat, being vacated by Nancy Jenkins, is a likely Republican win.
Incumbent Republican Eric Leutheuser, unopposed in his Primary, should sail to victory in this Republican-held seat.
Incumbent Republican Aaron Miller, unopposed in August, will see Lansing again this November in this safely-Republican district.
Jon Hoadley, the incumbent Democratic Representative in this Kalamazoo seat, ran unopposed in August and will come back to Lansing after November’s election in this long-time Democratic district.
Brandt Iden, the incumbent Republican, was unopposed in his Primary. Though this seat was a tossup in past elections, Iden is expected to return in November.
Incumbent Republican Rep John Bizon will face prominent Democratic attorney Jim Haadsma- each unopposed in their Primary – in one of the most hotly-contested seats this November; Bizon, a Republican, holds this Democratic-leaning seat.
State Rep David Maturen, unopposed in the Primary, should retrun to Lansing in this safely-Republican district held by former Speaker of the House Jase Bolger.
Republican Julie Alexander outfought fellow Republicans Phil Tripp and John Griffin to replace term-limited Representative Earl Poleski. She will face Democrat Ron Brooks in this leaning Republican seat.
Incumbent Brett Roberts easily defeated Republican challenger Robert Commet and is favored to retain this seat in November against Democrat Bonnie Johnson.
Republican Beth Griffin beat out two of her fellows to appear on the ballot in November. She will face Democrat Annie Brown who handily won the Democratic primary. This seat, currently held by Representative Aric Nesbitt, leans Republican.
Representative Tom Cochran easily defeated his Democratic challenger, Alec Findlay. He will face Republican Leon Clark in November in what is seen as a leaning Democratic seat.
Incumbent Representative Andy Schor put the smack down on a pair of Democratic challengers by racking up 81% of the vote. Representative Schor will be easily reelected in November.
Incumbent State rep Sam Singh, former mayor of East Lansing and current House Minority Floor Leader, ran unopposed in yesterday’s election, and will see Lansing again in this heavily-Democratic seat.
Outgoing Representative Rick Outman had a cast of thousands running in the Republican primary to succeed him. James Lower won the nod, and will very likely win the seat in November.
Incumbent State Rep Tom Barrett, was unopposed in his Primary. His opponent in November, who was also unopposed in her Primary yesterday, is Theresa Abed, from whom Barrett wrested this seat just last election. This is another race-to-watch in November as each party vies for control of this interesting demographic district.
Republican Steven Johnson won a hotly contested 5-way GOP primary that saw the top three vote-getters with over 20% of the vote. Mr. Johnson will almost certainly be elected in November.
Republican incumbent Chris Afendoulis, unopposed yesterday, should easily win his seat back in November.
Republican incumbent Rob VerHeulen, who has thrown his hat in the ring to try to be Speaker of the House next term, ran an unopposed Primary and should esily win back his seat.
Democratic incumbent David LaGrand, who won a special election to fill this seat when Democratic Rep Brandon Dillon left to Chair the Michigan Democratic Party, should sail to victory in November after running unopposed in August.
Democratic incumbent Winnie Brinks, who ran unopposed yesterday, will face Republican challenger Casey O’Neill in this Democratic-leaning district.
Outgoing Representative Tom Hooker will almost certainly be succeeded by the winner of the Republican primary in this district. That person is Tommy Brann, who won 90% of the GOP vote.
Incumbent Rep. Dave Pagel should ease back into his seat in November after running unopposed in August.
Kim LaSata, the spouse of former Representative Charlie LaSata won 54% of the vote in a crowded GOP primary to succeed outgoing Representative Al Pscholka. She faces Democrat Marletta Seats in this heavily Republican district.
Incumbent Mary Whiteford did not have to contend with Cindy Gamrat this time around, and she easily defeated Republican challenger Abigail Nobel. She will almost assuredly be reelected in November.
Incumbent Republican Rep Dan Lauwers, unopposed yesterday, will return to Lansing in this Republican-favored district.
Incumbent Republican Rep Gary Howell, who won this seat a few months ago after the controversial figure Todd Courser was ousted by his colleagues, ran unopposed yesterday. He will face Courser’s former Democratic challenger Margaret Guerrero DeLuca in this solid-GOP seat.
Representative Paul Muxlow had hoped his son, Matt, might succeed him in this Republican district. However, it was Shane Hernandez who came out on top of the 3-way GOP primary.
Incumbent Representative Edward Canfield was unchallenged in the Republican primary, and will return to Lansingfrom this heavily Republican district.
Popular incumbent Ben Glardon is term-limited, so both parties hope to have a chance at this battleground seat. The Republicans chose Ben Frederick, current Owosso Mayor and Legislative staffer, to be their standard bearer in what turned out to be a landslide primary victory. The Democrats were much more divided, with Anthony Karhoff and John Horvath separated by less than 70 votes with 98% of precincts reporting.
In another hotly contested race, Republican Thomas Albert narrowly edged out several fellow Republicans to win the primary. He will face Democrat Lynn Mason in the general election, where he will be heavily favored to win.
Julie Calley, wife of Lieutenant Governor Brian Calley, won the Republican primary unopposed. She will be heavily favored to win in November against Democrat Eric Anderson.
Incumbent Representative Roger Victory ran unopposed and will be back in Lansing for another term.
Republican Jim Lilly will almost certainly succeed incumbent Representative Amanda Price after winning the GOP primary.
Representative Daniela Garcia had one GOP challenger in the primary. She crushed Orlando Estrada 83%-17%. The only thing that will prevent her reelection in November is an asteroid striking the planet.
Current Representative Holly Hughes and former Representative Collene LaMonte each ran unopposed in their respective Republican and Democratic primaries. This will be one of the most fiercely contested races in November.
Outgoing Representative Marcia Hovey-Wright opened a vacancy in this heavily Democratic district. However, at 2am, there was still no clear victor. Terry Sabo was clinging to a 144 vote lead over Sean Mullally. Whoever comes out on top will almost certainly be elected in November.
Incumbent Representative Tom Leonard easily defeated Republican challenger Charles Truesdell in the primary. He will almost certainly win reelection in November.
Incumbent Representative Tim Kelly ran unopposed and will be expected to win in November against Democratic Candidate Kevin Seamon.
Incumbent Representative Vanessa Guerra ran unopposed and will be expected back in Lansing from this heavily Democratic district.
In another hotly contested primary, Democrat Brian Elder defeated Don Tilley with Brian DuFresne a distant third place. Elder will face Republican David Scholl in November, with Elder being favored to win.
Incumbent Joel Johnson is term-limited, so 5 Republicans and 2 Democrats filed to replace him. Jason Wentworth outdistanced the GOP field, while Democrat Robert Townsend clinched the nomination. Wentworth will be the favorite in November in this leaning Republican district.
Incumbent Representative Gary Glenn ran unopposed and will be strongly favored against Democrat Geoff Malicoat in November.
Republican Roger Hauck defeated fellow Republican Robin Stressman in the GOP primary. This seat, being vacated by Speaker of the House Kevin Cotter, will be another battleground in November. Democrat Brian Mielke, who narrowly lost to Cotter in 2014, hopes for better luck in 2016. This seat could go either way.
Outgoing Representative Jon Bumstead will likely be replaced with the scion of a revered political family as Scott VanSingel dominated the competition in the Republican primary. He will be heavily favored against Democrat Sandy Clark in November.
Republican Curt VanderWall cruised to victory in the GOP primary for the seat currently held by Representative Ray Franz. Former State Representative Dan Scripps hopes to win back his old seat for the Democrats in November in what promises to be a close race.
Outgoing Representative Phil Potvin will most likely see his seat won by Republican Michele Hoitenga after she won a hard-fought GOP primary.
Republican Daire Rendon, spouse to current incumbent Bruce Rendon, cruised to victory in the GOP primary. She will be favored against Democrat Jordan Stancil in the general election.
Incumbent Larry Inman held off a spirited challenge from fellow Republican Jason Gillman by a margin of 59%-41%. Betsy Coffia won the Democratic primary, but will have an uphill battle to oust Inman in November.
Incumbent Representative Triston Cole ran unopposed and will be expected back in Lansing from this heavily Republican district.
Both parties saw incredibly tight races in this seat being vacated by term-limited Representative Peter Pettalia. The GOP race is still technically up for grabs, as Sue Allor clings to a 200 vote lead over Jackie Krawczak. The Democrats saw Robert Kennedy edge out Erin Kieliszewski 52%-48%. It’s yet to be seen how competitive this race might be in November as both parties will have to right themselves after brutal primaries.
Freshman Representative Lee Chatfield thought he might have a race on his hands earlier this year when fellow Republican Kathy Twardy filed to run against him. In the end, Chatfield won handily, 73%-27%, and will almost certainly be reelected in November.
With Representative Ed McBroom being term-limited, the Democrats saw an opportunity to pick up a seat when popular Democratic Sheriff Scott Celello entered the race. Celello first had to stave off a tough primary fight, where he defeated fellow Democrat Dana Dziedzic 58%-42%. On the GOP side, Beau LeFave won a tough primary against Alan Arcand and Daryl Shann. This race will be very hotly contested in November.
Incumbent Representative John Kivela won a tougher primary than most expected against fellow Democrat Sara Cambensy by a margin of 64%-36%. He will face Republican Kevin Pfister who himself had a tough primary against Melody Patterson. Representative Kivela will be favored to win in November.
Democratic incumbent Representative Scott Dianda was unopposed and will be expected to win in November against Republican Gregory Markkanen.