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Politics & Government

Michigan Republican Party Expected To Choose New Leadership After Chair Withdraws Reelection Bid

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The Michigan Republican Party is expected to choose a new leadership team at its convention next month. That’s after current chair Laura Cox withdrew her a reelection bid, clearing the way for millionaire businessman Ron Weiser.

Michigan helped deliver the White House to President-elect Joe Biden last year. Governor Gretchen Whitmer and Michigan Democrats also swept the top ballot races in 2018, while Cox was chair.

Ron Weiser has served in the role twice before during 2009-2011 and 2017-2019.

Longtime Republican consultant John Sellek says a challenge now for Weiser and the state GOP is moving past the controversies of President Donald Trump’s administration.

“Somehow making that turn away from the grievances of the past and decisions that can’t be changed and make the focus on how Republicans are different than the decision makers that are in place now,” he said. “And it’s unknown right now who can make that turn happen.”

That controversy lingers with the presence on the leadership ticket of Meshawn Maddock. Some Republicans have said she should go after helping to organize busses of pro-Trump supporters this week to Washington DC, where pro-Trump extremists stormed the US Capitol.

Weiser told Bridge Michigan that he’s standing by Maddock.

“I don’t believe she was part of it,” he told Bridge. “I don’t believe she incited it.”

2022 will be a challenging year for Republicans.

The top-of-the ticket races on the 2022 ballot will all be seats held by Democrats -- Governor Gretchen Whitmer, Attorney General Dana Nessell, and Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson.

Political party leaders will also have to navigate the complexities of new congressional, state House, and state Senate districts drawn by an independent reapportionment commission. In some cases, those redrawn lines could pit incumbents of the same party against each other. New district lines will also change the dynamics of GOP efforts to maintain their majorities in the state House and the state Senate.

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