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Democrats Pick Up Handful Of Seats In State House, GOP Keeps Majority

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It looks like Republicans will hold an eight-seat majority in the state House. 

But as Michigan Public Radio’s Jake Neher reports, at least one analyst says Democrats blew an opportunity to win a majority in the chamber.

Inside Michigan Politics Editor Bill Ballenger says Democrats spent too much money trying to unseat state House Speaker Jase Bolger, who ultimately won his bid for reelection. Ballenger says they spent at least a half-million dollars in that race, money that could have gone to other candidates in less conservative districts.

But House Democratic Campaign Chair Jeff Irwin says it was the right decision.

“We knew that we had a shot at that race, so I’m glad that we invested in a race where we had a chance of picking up a seat,” he says.

Bolger defeated Democratic opponent Bill Farmer by a narrow margin. The race became competitive after the speaker’s role in an election rigging scandal in May.

Jake Neher is a reporter for the Michigan Public Radio Network. He covers the State Legislature and other political events in Lansing.
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