Livingston County Democrats have done their best to stay out of the Republican primaries in Livingston County, except to wonder from afar why it is just about every incumbent at the county level and above is being challenged this year.
So it was with a great deal of surprise to read in Sunday's Livingston Press and Argus that we were being accused of actually creating one of those primaries by recruiting a stealth candidate to run against Republican Bill Rogers in the 42nd State House seat.
So I want to make one thing perfectly clear:
The Livingston County Democratic Party has only one candidate in Tuesday's primary for the 42nd House seat and that is Shanda Willis. We did not recruit anyone to run in the Republican primary and as long as I am chair of the party, we never will.
Both the rules of the Michigan Democratic Party and the bylaws of the Livingston County Democratic Party clearly state that party resources may not be used to promote the candidacy of anyone who is not a member of the Democratic Party. I follow that to the letter. We are Democrats. We recruit Democrats. We run as Democrats. We vote for Democrats. Period.
Democrats in the county should not be confused. We are not suggesting that anyone vote in the Republican primary for the "lesser of two evils." Any Republican who goes to Lansing would help the GOP maintain control of the Michigan House and permit it to continue pursuing its extreme, far-right agenda, whether the local representative votes for those bills or not.
Shanda Willis is the only Democrat running in the 42nd House race. Our party supports only Shanda Willis in the 42nd House race. She is the only candidate in either party who will stand up for better schools for our children, tax fairness for seniors and families, the rights of working people, and the rights of women. And in the 47th District, we support Shawn Lowe Desai, and only Shawn Lowe Desai.
Any suggestion otherwise is pure fantasy and has the potential to undermine our candidates in November.