Thursday, November 24, 2016

2016 Analysis: Kalamazoo

Donald Trump won Michigan by winning big margins among white working class voters.  That didn't help Republicans in Kalamazoo County, which has a highly educated populace.

Trump got 40.4% versus Clinton's 53.2%.  That's worse than Mitt Romney's 42.9%, which was pretty bad itself.  Trump did well in many rural townships, but got only 40% in Oshtemo, 33% in K Township, 23% in Kalamazoo, and 46% in Portage.  Trump won only three county commission districts (6, 7, and 8 in the east) and won only four precincts in Portage.  That hurt Republicans downticket.

Out of 128233 votes, Ds got 33218 straight ticket votes, and Rs got 25159.  Straight ticket votes likely hurt Republicans, though we cannot know what voters would have done in its absence.

Fred Upton got 49.4% to Paul Clements' 44.8%.  That's a slight improvement on his 50-46 victory in 2014.  "Libertarian" Lorence Wenke got 5.7%, racking up his fifth straight loss.

Ds won the education board races in Kalamazoo by narrower margins with one exception.  Ron Weiser squeaked into the second spot for U of M board.

Jon Hoadley was reelected 69-25.  Brandt Iden was reelected 49.4-44.7 in a district where Trump got 47.7% (2 party).  David Maturen got 58.6% in the Kalamazoo portion of his district.  Beth Griffin got 56% in the Kalamazoo portion of her district.

All incumbent countywide officials were reelected.  The results are:
Prosecutor: 38-62  Don Smith lost to Jeff Getting.
Sheriff: 38-62 Jeff Heppler lost to Richard Fuller.
Clerk: 52.2-47.8  Tim Snow defeated John Taylor.  2012 was even closer.
Treasurer: 55-45  Mary Balkema defeated Sunny Sahu
Pat Crowley (D drain commissioner) and Gary Hahn (R surveyor) were unopposed.  Voters evidently didn't see much reason to toss any incumbents.  Republicans need to do a better job publicizing the missteps of the D incumbents.

County commission results:
1. 19-81 Salvano loses to Moore.
2. 28-72 Fawley loses to Wordelman
3. 30-70 Coss loses to Hall
4. Seals unopposed
5. 44-56 Dillon loses to Rogers
6. Kendall got 77% against a libertarian.
7. 57-43 Tuinier defeats Clark
8. Gisler unopposed
9. 55-45 Shugars defeats Adams
10. 49.8-50.2 Whitaker loses to Quinn.  Inexcusable.
11. 52.5-47.5 McGraw defeats Foster.  Too close for comfort.
Unfortunately, Republicans will again be in the minority on the county commission.  Trump lost Portage, and R results in Portage were weak.

In Comstock Township, where Trump won 52% (2 party), Sandra Bloomfield lost a squeaker with 49.7% to former trustee Randy Thompson.  Michelle Mohney won 62% in the clerk race.  Republicans Amos, McIver, and Austin won for trustee along with D Pratt.

In Oshtemo Township, where Trump won 40% (2 party), John Nieuwenhuis lost 42-58 against Libby Heiny-Cogswell.  Solarek lost to Farmer 43-57 for clerk.  Zondervan lost to Culp 40-60.  Ds Everett (61%), Bushouse (58%), Ford (54%), and Hudok (49.6%) beat Rs Carr (49.3%), Corakis (44%), Lefler (42%), and Clem (42%).  The former Republicans Everett and Bushouse did best.  The R candidates tried to get the word out about the Ds mismanagement, but the top of the ticket was too much to overcome.  The preservation of straight ticket voting likely hurt Rs here.

It is still possible for Kalamazoo candidates to overcome the top of the ticket, but it takes a high quality campaign.  Republicans need to do a better job publicizing the misdeeds of local democrats and explaining the consequences of people's votes in local elections.  It may help if straight ticket voting is eventually eliminated.

Wednesday, November 09, 2016

Michigan Election Results

President:
Trump 47.6 Clinton 47.3

Supreme Court:
67-23 for Viviano
59-28 for Larsen

Education Boards:
SBOE:  McMillin and Snyder win, pulling Rs into a 4-4 tie.  Big loss for D bathroom policy.
UofM:  Weiser wins, Illich second.  Now 3R, 5D.
MSU:  Kelly and Byrum win.  Now 4-4 tie.
WSU:  Gaffney and Busito win Now 3R, 5D.

 Congress:
1. 55-40 for Bergman over Johnson. Big win in a race many pundits called a tossup.
2. 63-32 for Huizinga
3. 59-38 for Amash
4. 62-32 for Moolenaar
5. 35-61 Kildee
6. 59-36 Upton over Clements. Wenke got 5%.
7. 55-40 Walberg over Driskell. Big win in a race Ds fought for.
8. 56-39 Bishop. Secure.
9. 37-58 for Sander Levin
10. 63-32 for Paul Mitchell
11. 53-40 for Trott.  Surprisingly, this was the closest congressional race.
12. 29-64 for Debbie Dingell
13. 16-77 for Conyers
14. 19-79 for Lawrence

 State House:
17. 52-44 for Bellino over Lavoy. Shocking upset and PICKUP.
20. 56-44 for Noble.  Big conservative win.
23. 49.7-50.3 Camilleri beats Howey.  Tough LOSS in a tough district.
24. 55-45 for Marino. The tapes didn’t matter.
30. 54-46 for Farrington
39. 50-42 for Kesto
40. 53-47 for McCready. Close call in an upscale district.
41. 56-44 for Howrylak
50. 48-52 for Sneller. This wasn’t even on the radar.  Trump did well here.
52. 45-52 Lasinski wins.  Not that close, but this might have been won with a stronger candidate.
57. 56-44 for Kahle
61. 49-45 for Iden. Iden seriously underperformed.
62. 48.0-47.5 Bizon wins a very tough district.
66. 54-46 for Griffin
71. 54-43 for Barrett
85. 56-34 for Frederick. Locked down early.
91. 49-44 for Hughes
99. 55-45 for Hauck
101. 54-46 for VanderWall
104. 51-43 for Inman
106. 61-35 for Allor over sign-stealing Kennedy.
108. 53-47 for LaFave. Dems top recruit loses.

Macomb: Candace Miller wins public works. Rs win Treasurer and Clerk narrowly.
Oakland: Incumbents win, including Patterson and Bouchard.
Kalamazoo:  All incumbents win.
The metro Detroit transit millage failed.

Friday, October 28, 2016

2016 Michigan Pre-General State House Fundraising Reports

October 28 was the deadline for campaign finance reports for Michigan legislature.  Here are summaries of the total amounts raised (with cash on hand) in competitive general elections for Michigan state house.  XX means the report has yet to be filed.

17. (Safe D) (R) Bellino 53K (-4K) (D) LaVoy 54K (8K)
20. (Lean R) (R) Noble 81K (15K) (D) Pubur 83K (42K)
23. (Tossup/Tilt R) (R) Howey 194K (71K) (D) Camilleri 177K (37K)
24. (Tossup/Tilt R) (R) Marino 147K (18K) (D) Peterson 156K (39K)
30. (Tossup/Tilt R) (R) Farrington 282K (25K) (D) Notte 134K (45K)
39. (Lean R) (R) Kesto 300K (57K) (D) Stack 72K (22K)
41. (Likely R) (R) Howrylak 109K (39K) (D) Peltonon 18K (5K)
52. (Safe D) (R) Clark 30K ($263) (D) Lasinski 213K (53K)
56. (Lean R) (R) Sheppard 271K (64K) (D) Redmond 48K (16K)
57. (Lean R) (R) Kahle 207K (38K) (D) Schmidt 162K (42K)
61. (Lean R) (R) Iden 336K (93K) (D) Fisher 254K (11K)
62. (Tossup/Tilt R) (R) Bizon 198K (106K) (D) Haadsma 280K (60K)
64. (Likely R) (R) Alexander 170K (40K) (D) Brooks 24K (-2K)
66. (Lean R) (R) Griffin 333K (60K) (D) Brown 292K (72K)
71. (Tossup/Tilt R) (R) Barrett 231K (68K) (D) Abed 327K (34K)
76. (Safe D) (R) O'Neill 49K (6K) (D) Brinks 121K (64K)
79. (Likely R) (R) LaSata 72K (24K) (D) Seats 15K (6K)
83. (Safe R) (R) Hernandez 61K (6K) (D) Frank 21K (11K)
85. (Likely R) (R) Frederick 172K (34K) (D) Karhoff 22K (-1K)
91. (Tossup/Tilt D) (R) Hughes 364K (111K) (D) Lamonte 449K (46K)
97. (Safe R) (R) Wentworth 75K (2K) (D) Townsend XX
98. (Safe R) (R) Glenn 195K (82K) (D) Malicoat 27K (1K)
99. (Tossup/Tilt D) (R) Hauck 229K (55K) (D) Mielke 370K (53K)
101. (Lean D) (R) VanderWall 130K (78K) (D) Scripps 435K (26K)
103. (Likely R) (R) Rendon 116K (40K) (D) Stancil 44K (3K)
104. (Lean R) (R) Inman 142K (8K) (D) Coffia 62K (24K)
106. (Tossup/Tilt R) (R) Allor 173K (17K) (D) Kennedy 72K (35K)
108. (Tossup/Tilt R) (R) Lafave 88K (7K) (D) Celello 289K (60K)

Thursday, September 08, 2016

Phyllis Schlafly, RIP

Phyllis Schlafly, one of the founders of the modern American conservative movement, has died.

She was a delegate to numerous Republican conventions. She wrote many books on topics including education, feminism, national defense, and judicial activism; her total sales are several million. She led the movement to defeat the Equal Rights Amendment, the chief goal of the feminist movement. She founded and still led Eagle Forum, a conservative organization focusing on national sovereignty, immigration reform, education, and traditional values. Schlafly wrote a weekly column and a monthly newsletter.

I met Schlafly when she spoke at Kalamazoo College in 2007.  The following article summarized that event.

Phyllis Schlafly Speech

2016 Michigan State House Races

Last updated October 28, 2016.

Cross-posted at The Western RightRight Michigan, and Red Racing Horses.

All 110 seats in the Michigan House of Representatives will be up for election in November. Republicans won a 63-47 majority in 2014, picking up four seats (62, 71, 84, 91), up from 59-41 after 2012. There are 42 open seats, 27 held by Republicans and 15 held by democrats. There are 41 open due to term-limits and one (Gretchen Driskell) just seeking another office.

Democrats are hoping to take back the state house. They will benefit from higher turnout in a presidential year and possibly coattails from the presidential race. They will try to take advantage of Republican support for a tax increase for roads and Governor Snyder's handling of the Flint water crisis, though state house candidates had nothing to do with the latter.

There are also many Republican seats first won in 2010 that are now term-limited.  Democrats are targeting several Republican incumbents, including 61, 62, 71, 91, and a number of open seats.

State house fundraising is analyzed in this article.





2016 Unofficial Michigan Primary Candidate Listing

The following lists district number, current incumbent, geographic description, 2012 and 2014 state house results, 2012 Romney %, and political rating.

1. (Brian Banks) [Detroit] 29-71, 31-69, 23.5%, Safe D Brian Banks won the 2012 primary before his long criminal record and ethical issues were exposed. He won a 2014 primary against divided opposition. This year, he again won the primary over divided opposition, and also faces new felony charges.
2. (OPEN-Alberta Tinsley Talibi) [Detroit] 26-72, 33-67, 23.8%, Safe D
3. (Wendell Byrd) [Detroit] 3-96, 3-97, 1.6%, Safe D
4. (Rose Robinson) [Detroit] 5-95, 5-95, 3.4%, Safe D
5. (Fred Durhal III) [Detroit] 6-94, 5-95, 2.7%, Safe D
6. (Stephanie Chang) [Detroit] 5-92, 6-94, 5.3%, Safe D
7. (LaTanya Garrett) [Detroit] 2-98, 2-98, 0.9%, Safe D
8. (Sherry Gay-Dagnogo) [Detroit] 3-97, 3-97, 2%, Safe D
9. (OPEN-Harvey Santana) [Detroit] 5-95, 4-96, 3.3%, Safe D
10. (Leslie Love) [Detroit] 14-86, 18-82, 16.4%, Safe D
11. (OPEN-Julie Plawecki) [Inkster, Garden City] 28-72, 30-70, 29.3%, Safe D This seat is open after Julie Plawecki's sudden death. Party insiders picked Inkster Councilman Jewell Jones for the full term.
12. (Erika Geiss) [Taylor, Romulus] 25-75, 30-70, 29.5%, Safe D
13. (Frank Liberati) [Southgate, Allen Park, Dearborn Heights] 35-65, 39-61, 40.3%, Safe D
14. (OPEN-Paul Clemente) [Riverview, Wyandotte, Lincoln Park, Melvindale] 26-71, 30-70, 34.9%, Safe D
15. (OPEN-George Darany) [Dearborn] 25-75, 32-68, 33.5%, Safe D
16. (Robert Kosowski) [Westland, Wayne] 28-68, 32-68, 33.3%, Safe D
17. (Bill Lavoy) [N Monroe, Sumpter, Huron] 39-61, 40-60, 45.3%, Safe D Republican Joseph Bellino has raised a decent amount of money, but running against a two-term incumbent in this environment is too high a hill to climb. He can be a strong candidate when the seat is open in 2018.
18. (OPEN-Sarah Roberts) [St. Clair Shores, Eastpointe] 34-64, 38-62, 40.7%, Safe D
19. (Laura Cox) [Livonia] 60-40, 62-38, 52%, Safe R
20. (OPEN-Kurt Heise) [Plymouth, Northville] 56-44, 60-40, 51.8%, Lean R Pastor Jeff Noble won an upset in the R primary with Tea Party support. He faces D Colleen Pobur in this somewhat moderate district.
21. (Kristy Pagan) [Canton, Van Buren] 38-62, 45-55, 43.3%, Safe D
22. (John Chirkun) [Roseville, E Warren] 30-70, 32-64, 36.2%, Safe D
23. (OPEN-Pat Somerville) [SE Wayne] 50.5-49.5, 52.1-47.9, 47.5%, Tossup (Tilt R) Pat Somerville won three close victories in this seat, which is the top D target. R Trenton Councilman Bob Howey has fundraised well. He faces Parks commissioner Darin Calmilleri, who won a tough D primary.
24. (OPEN-Anthony Forlini) [Harrison, N Clinton, SW Macomb] 54.7-45.3, 59-39, Tossup (Tilt R) R Macomb County Commissioner Steve Marino was embarrassed by recordings of him making false claims about his lobbying. He faces D Dana Camphous-Peterson, who has fundraised well.
25. (Henry Yanez) [E Sterling Heights, NC Warren] 48.6-51.4, 46.5-53.5, 47.8%, Safe D
26. (OPEN-Jim Townsend) [Royal Oak, Madison Heights] 36-60, 39-61, 40.3%, Safe D
27. (Robert Whittenberg) [Oak Park, Ferndale, Hazel Park] 20-76, 24-76, 24.8%, Safe D
28. (OPEN-Derek Miller) [W Warren, Center Line] 21-79, 36-64, 35.8%, Safe D
29. (Tim Greimel) [Pontiac, Auburn Hills, Orchard Lake] 23-77, 26-74, 23.9%, Safe D
30. (OPEN-Jeff Farrington) [W Sterling Heights, Utica, SE Shelby] 53.3-46.7, 55-45, 51.5%, Tossup (Tilt R) Diana Farrington, wife of the incumbent, won an unexpectedly close R primary. She faces D Michael Notte, son of the former Mayor of Sterling Heights. MIRS rates this district most likely to flip.
31. (OPEN-Marilyn Lane) [S Clinton, Fraser, Mt. Clemens] 34-62, 39-61, 41.8%, Safe D
32. (OPEN-Andrea LaFontaine) [Chesterfield, C St. Clair] 59-41, 62-38, 53.9%, Safe R School board treasurer Pamela Hornberger won the R primary in the seat.
33. (OPEN-Ken Goike) [NE Macomb, Macomb Twp.] 62-38, 66-34, 56.2%, Safe R City councilman Jeff Yaroch won the R primary in this seat.
34. (Sheldon Neeley) [Flint] 13-87, 9-91, 8.3%, Safe D
35. (Jeremy Moss) [Southfield] 17-83, 17-83, 17.6%, Safe D
36. (Peter Lucido) [Shelby, Washington, Bruce] 64-36, 70-30, 61%, Safe R
37. (Kristine Greig) [Farmington] 38-62, 43-57, 40.3%, Safe D
38. (Kathy Crawford) [Novi, Lyon] 59-41, 63-37, 53.6%, Safe R
39. (Klint Kesto) [W West Bloomfield, Commerce, Wixom] 53.3-46.7, 52.3-47.7, 51.5%, Lean R Kesto has a large cash advantage over D Michael Stack, but the district is closely divided.
40. (Michael McCready) [Bloomfield, Birmingham, E West Bloomfield] 57-41, 58-42, 52.8%, Safe R
41. (Martin Howrylak) [Troy, Clawson] 50.5-49.5, 56-44, 51.6%, Likely R D Cyndi Peltonen hasn't raised much money, but Howrylak had a close call in 2012.
42. (Lana Theis) [SE Livingston] 63-33, 65-35, 60.2%, Safe R
43. (Jim Tedder) [Waterford, Independence] 66-34, 58-42, 54.8%, Safe R
44. (Jim Runestad) [Springfield, White Lake, Highland, Milford] 63-33, 68-32, 59.1%, Safe R
45. (Michael Webber) [Rochester, S Oakland Twp] 56-44, 56-44, 55.9%, Safe R
46. (OPEN-Bradford Jacobsen) [NE Oakland] 64-36, 69-31, 60.1%, Safe R Bradford Jacobsen narrowly beat back a primary challenge 54-46 from John Reilly in 2014. This time, Reilly (AC) beat Joe Kent (E) by 31 votes.
47. (Henry Vaupel) [N Livingston] 64-32, 69-27, 62.5%, Safe R
48. (Pam Faris) [NE Genesee] 36-64, 38-62, 39.8%, Safe D
49. (Phil Phelps) [Flint Twp., Mt. Morris, SW Flint] 25-75, 26-74, 28.8%, Safe D
50. (OPEN-Charles Smiley) [Burton, Grand Blanc, Mundy] 39-61, 41-59, 42.7%, Safe D
51. (Joe Graves) [W Genesee, Fenton, NW Oakland] 54.3-45.7, 58-42, 53.1%, Safe R
52. (OPEN-Gretchen Driskell) [W Washtenaw] 47-53, 44-56, 47.5%, Safe D This seat is open since Driskell, who beat an incumbent R in 2012, is running for Congress. School board treasurer Donna Lasinski, who had chamber of commerce support, won the D primary.
53. (OPEN-Jeff Irwin) [Ann Arbor] 19-81, 18-82, 19.5%, Safe D
54. (OPEN-David Rutledge) [Ypsilanti] 23-77, 25-75, 23.8%, Safe D
55. (Adam Zemke) [Pittsfield, NE Ann Arbor, York, Augusta] 32-65, 32-68, 31.6%, Safe D
56. (Jason Sheppard) [S Monroe] 58-42, 50.3-47.1, 50.6%, Lean R Jason Sheppard narrowly beat Tom Redmond in 2014 and faces a rematch in 2016.
57. (OPEN-Nancy Jenkins) [Lenawee] 52.5-47.5, 59-41, 49.9%, Lean R Senior center director Bronna Khale easily won the R primary. She faces D Harvey Schmidt.
58. (Eric Leutheuser) [Branch, Hillsdale] 70-30, 71-29, 60.1%, Safe R
59. (Aaron Miller) [St. Joseph, E Cass] 62-38, 62-38, 54.7%, Safe R
60. (Jon Hoadley) [Kalamazoo, Kalamazoo Twp.] 26-74, 30-70, 26.8%, Safe D
61. (Brandt Iden) [Portage, Oshtemo, Texas, Schoolcraft, Prairie Ronde] 58-42, 48.4-42.7, 49.1%, Lean R Iden, who hurt himself by lying about a DUI in 2014, has been attacked for his support of Trump (he was a national delegate) but got good PR for his mass shooting alert bill. He faces a rematch with liberal pastor John Fisher.
62. (John Bizon) [Battle Creek, Albion, N Calhoun] 42-58, 51.2-48.8, 43.8%, Tossup (Tilt R) Dr. Bizon has a large base and great fundraising. He faces D Calhoun County Commissioner Jim Haadsma in the most D house district held by an R.
63. (David Maturen) [E Kalamazoo, S Calhoun] 50.9-49.1, 56-44, 54.6%, Safe R
64. (OPEN-Earl Poleski) [Jackson city, W Jackson] 56-44, 61-39, 51.2%, Likely R Jackson County Commissioner Julie Alexander won the R primary. She faces D Ron Brooks, who has not raised much.
65. (Brett Roberts) [N Jackson, SE Eaton] 57-43, 57-40, 53.4%, Safe R
66. (OPEN-Aric Nesbitt) [Van Buren, Cooper, Alamo, Parchment] 59-41, 57-43, 49.7%, Lean R Van Buren County Commissioner Beth Griffin easily won the R primary. She faces D school board member Annie Brown, who lost to Nesbitt in 2014.
67. (Tom Cochran) [S Ingham] 44-56, 46-54, 44.8%, Safe D
68. (Andy Schor) [Lansing] 23-77, 23-77, 24.6%, Safe D
69. (Sam Singh) [East Lansing, Meridian] 35-65, 32-68, 35.9%, Safe D
70. (OPEN-Rick Outman) [Montcalm, N Gratiot] 54.5-45.5, 62-38, 52.6%, Safe R Former county commissioner James Lower won the R primary.
71. (Tom Barrett) [Eaton] 46.6-53.4, 50.4-49.6, 47.3%, Tossup (Tilt R) Tom Barrett beat dem state rep. Theresa Abed in 2014. She is back for a rematch in 2016.
72. (OPEN-Ken Yonker) [Kentwood, Gaines, NE Allegan] 59-38, 68-32, 56.3%, Safe R Unemployed 25-year-old military veteran Steven Johnson won a shocking upset in the R primary.
73. (Chris Afendoulis) [Grand Rapids Twp, Plainfield, NE Kent] 64-32, 68-32, 60.9%, Safe R
74. (Rob Verhuelen) [Grandville, Walker, Alpine, NW Kent] 66-34, 69-31, 60.4%, Safe R
75. (Dave LaGrand) [central Grand Rapids] 24-76, 26-74, 23.8%, Safe D
76. (Winnie Brinks) [peripheral Grand Rapids] 39-52, 45.6-52.1, 44.2%, Safe D Republican Casey O'Neill has fundraised well, but running against a two-term incumbent in this environment is too high a hill to climb. Rs will have a better chance when the seat is open in 2018.
77. (OPEN-Thomas Hooker) [Wyoming, Byron] 60-36, 67-33, 58.3%, Safe R Restaurant owner Tommy Brann won the R primary overwhelmingly.
78. (Dave Pagel) [S Berrien, SW Cass] 61-39, 67-33, 56.1%, Safe R
79. (OPEN-Al Pscholka) [N Berrien] 52.8-45.7, 59-39, 51.5%, Likely R Teacher Kim LaSata, wife of former rep (1998-2004) Charles LaSata, won the R primary.
80. (Mary Whiteford) [Allegan] 62-38, 63-34, 57.6%, Safe R Mary Whiteford won a special election in March 2016 to replace expelled rep. Cindy Gamrat.
81. (Dan Lauwers) [NW, E St. Clair] 53.8-46.2, 65-35, 55%, Safe R
82. (Gary Howell) [Lapeer] 59-41, 55-45, 55.1%, Safe R
83. (OPEN-Paul Muxlow) [Sanilac, Port Huron] 56-44, 62-38, 52.5%, Safe R Conservative activist Shane Hernandez won the R primary.
84. (Edward Canfield) [Tuscola, Huron] 38-53, 59-41, 53-43, 55.6%, Safe R
85. (OPEN-Ben Glardon) [Shiawassee, W Saginaw] 54-40, 53-43, 48.9%, Likely R Owosso Mayor Ben Frederick fundraised well and easily won the R primary. He faces D Anthony Karhoff, who has not fundraised well.
86. (OPEN-Lisa Posthumus Lyons) [SE Kent, N Ionia] 70-30, 66-34, 63%, Safe R Marine Thomas Albert won the close R primary.
87. (OPEN-Mike Callton) [Barry, S Ionia] 62-35, 67-33, 58.7%, Safe R Ionia County Commissioner Julie Calley, wife of LG Brian Calley, was unopposed in the R primary.
88. (Roger Victory) [NE Ottawa] 87-0, 80-20, 72.9%, Safe R
89. (OPEN-Amanda Price) [W Ottawa] 66-34, 68-32, 61.6%, Safe R Banker Jim Lilly easily won the R primary.
90. (Daniela Garcia) [Holland] 100-0, 78-22, 66.5%, Safe R
91. (Holly Hughes) [S, W Muskegon] 47.3-48.1, 46.5-46.3, 48.5%, Tossup (Tilt D) Holly Hughes defeated dem state rep. Colleen LaMonte in 2014, who defeated her in 2012. LaMonte is back for a rematch in 2016.
92. (OPEN-Marcia Hovey Wright) [Muskegon city] 27-73, 33-67, 31.3%, Safe D
93. (Tom Leonard) [S Gratiot, Clinton] 57-43, 56-35, 52.9%, Safe R
94. (Tim Kelly) [Saginaw Twp, E Saginaw] 56-44, 62-38, 55.7%, Safe R
95. (Vanessa Guerra) [Saginaw city] 22-78, 24-76, 24.8%, Safe D
96. (OPEN-Charles Brunner) [Bay] 31-69, 32-68, 45.3%, Safe D Former county commissioner Brian Elder, who is pro-life, won the D primary.
97. (OPEN-Joel Johnson) [Arenac, Gladwin, Clare, E Osceola] 62-38, 63-37, 53.2%, Safe R Veteran Jason Wentworth won the R primary easily. The D candidate has effectively dropped out.
98. (Gary Glenn) [C Midland, N Bay] 59-41, 55-45, 56%, Safe R
99. (OPEN-Kevin Cotter) [Isabella, W Midland] 57-43, 51.5-48.5, 48.1%, Tossup (Tilt D) Township Trustee Roger Hauck easily won the R primary, but has struggled in fundraising. D Bryan Mielke is running again after coming close in 2014 against Speaker Cotter.
100. (OPEN-Jon Bumstead) [Newaygo, Oceana, Lake] 62-38, 63-37, 55.5%, Safe R Accountant/businessman Scott VanSingel easily won the R primary.
101. (OPEN-Ray Franz) [Leelanau, Benzie, Manistee, Mason] 51-49, 50.4-49.6, 50.7%, Lean D Mason county commissioner Curt VanderWall easily won the R primary. He faces D former state rep Dan Scripps (2008-2010), who has raised significantly more.
102. (OPEN-Phil Potvin) [Wexford, W Osceola, Mecosta] 54.8-45.2, 60-40, 56.3%, Safe R Manton Mayor Michelle Hoitenga won a close R primary.
103. (OPEN-Bruce Rendon) [Kalkaska, Crawford, Missaukee, Roscommon, Ogemaw] 52.8-47.2, 60-34, 55.9%, Likely R Daire Rendon, wife of the incumbent, easily won the R primary. She faces D Jordan Stancil.
104. (Larry Inman) [Grand Traverse] 57-43, 53.2-46.8, 55.4%, Lean R Inman, who won the Republican primary in 2014 with 21%, beat back a primary challenge this time. He faces D Betsy Coffia.
105. (Triston Cole) [Antrim, Charlevoix, Otsego, Montmorency, Oscoda] 67-33, 63-37, 58.5%, Safe R
106. (OPEN-Peter Petallia) [E Cheboygan, Presque Isle, Alpena, Alcona, Iosco] 52.2-45.3, 55-45, 53.6%, Tossup (Tilt R) Cheboygan County Commissioner Sue Allor won the R primary. She faces Robert Kennedy, who upset the preferred D candidate. A MIRS poll has Kennedy leading.
107. (Lee Chatfield) [Emmet, Mackinac, Chippewa, N Cheboygan] 58-42, 61-39, 55.5%, Safe R
108. (OPEN-Ed McBroom) [Delta, Menominee, Dickinson] 54.6-45.4, 60-40, 54.6%, Tossup/Tilt R Beau LaFave won the R primary. He faces Sheriff Scott Celello, won is highly touted by dems, but underperformed in the D primary.
109. (John Kivela) [Marquette, Alger, Schoolcraft, Luce] 42-58, 34-66, 45.4%, Safe D
110. (Scott Dianda) [W Upper Peninsula] 48.4-51.6, 39-61, 51.6%,

Safe D Ratings:
Safe D: 47
Lean D: 1 (101)
Tossup (Tilt D): 2 (91, 99)
Tossup (Tilt R): 7 (23, 24, 30, 62, 71, 106, 108)
Lean R: 7 (20, 39, 56, 57, 61, 64, 104)
Likely R: 5 (41, 64, 79, 85, 103)
Safe R: 41

Thursday, September 01, 2016

2016 Michigan Post-primary State House Fundraising

September 1 was the deadline for campaign finance reports for Michigan legislature.  Here are summaries of the total amounts raised (with cash on hand) in competitive general elections for Michigan state house.  XX means the report has yet to be filed.

17. (Safe D) (R) Bellino 43K (19K) (D) LaVoy 54K (5K)
20. (Lean R) (R) Noble 27K (10K) (D) Pubur 28K (19K)
23. (Tossup) (R) Howey 67K (37K) (D) Camilleri 62K (7K)
24. (Lean R) (R) Marino 110K (42K) (D) Peterson 75K (20K)
30. (Lean R) (R) Farrington 76K (32K) (D) Notte 46K (14K)
39. (Lean R) (R) Kesto 176K (101K) (D) Stack 6K (13K)
41. (Lean R) (R) Howrylak 84K (34K) (D) Peltonon 7K (2K)
52. (Safe D) (R) Clark 15K (4K) (D) Lasinski 123K (19K)
56. (Lean R) (R) Sheppard 107K (64K) (D) Redmond 23K (10K)
57. (Tossup) (R) Kahle 88K (28K) (D) Schmidt 22K (21K)
61. (Lean R) (R) Iden 132K (82K) (D) Fisher 33K (17K)
62. (Tossup) (R) Bizon 109K (85K) (D) Haadsma 77K (47K)
64. (Lean R) (R) Alexander 104K (4K) (D) Brooks 16K (6K)
66. (Lean R) (R) Griffin 110K (50K) (D) Brown 62K (29K)
71. (Tossup) (R) Barrett 130K (77K) (D) Abed 50K (25K)
76. (Safe D) (R) O'Neill 40K (6K) (D) Brinks 70K (40K)
79. (Lean R) (R) LaSata 50K (14K) (D) Seats 9K (6K)
83. (Safe R) (R) Hernandez 49K (8K) (D) Frank 9K (4K)
85. (Lean R) (R) Frederick 126K (30K) (D) Karhoff 11K (4K)
91. (Tossup) (R) Hughes 182K (119K) (D) Lamonte 143K (103K)
97. (Safe R) (R) Wentworth 53K (14K) (D) Townsend 8K ($250)
98. (Safe R) (R) Glenn 179K (98K) (D) Malicoat 13K ($302)
99. (Tossup) (R) Hauck 53K (21K) (D) Mielke 109K (70K)
101. (Tossup) (R) VandelWall 66K (52K) (D) Scripps 107K (22K)
103. (Lean R) (R) Rendon 84K (41K) (D) Stancil 31K (1K)
104. (Lean R) (R) Inman 122K (29K) (D) Coffia 35K (16K)
106. (Lean R) (R) Allor 77K (21K) (D) Kennedy 20K (3K)
108. (Tossup) (R) Lafave 41K (3K) (D) Celello 59K (21K)

I moved 83 and 97 to safe R based on these reports.

Friday, August 05, 2016

Lessons from the 2016 Primary Elections

What can we learn from the 2016 primary elections?  This article explains what the winning candidates had in common.  I wrote a similar article in 2014.

They don't call it the establishment for nothing  Establishment candidates won many races.  They have the inside track on fundraising, endorsements, and organization.  Notably, several winning conservatives, including Beth Griffin, Tommy Brann, Shane Hernandez, Ben Frederick, and Scott VanSingel had substantial establishment support.

Be the establishment  One answer to this is to become the establishment.  Shane Hernandez is a former county party chairman.  It takes time to build political connections, but it pays off eventually.

Experience counts  Elected experience is valuable for winning candidates.  Bob Howey, Steve Marino, Julie Alexander, Beth Griffin, Ben Frederick, Roger Hauck, and Curt VanderWall have all been elected to local office.

Incumbency Matters  All incumbents won renomination.  Beating an incumbent in a primary is very hard.  The only times a conservative challenger beat a Republican incumbent in recent years are Tim Walberg in 2006 and Lee Chatfield in 2014.  Certainly many incumbents deserve primary challenges, but conservatives have limited resources.  Winning an open seat is much easier than beating an incumbent.  Politicians can still be held to account when they run for other offices.  Tom Casperson, Jason Allen, Tony Forlini, and (to a lesser extent) Phil Pavlov had bad voting records that contributed to losing their congressional bids.

There are still some benefits to primary challenges, though, as they may encourage the incumbent to vote better for awhile and may help the challenger to win an open seat later.  John Reilly lost a primary challenge in 2014, but won an open seat this time.

Don't Ignore Life  Every candidate who won a Republican primary was endorsed by Michigan Right to Life (either solely or jointly).

Don't split the vote  Conservatives did much better this year than in 2014.  Only in district 30 did a more conservative candidate likely lose due to vote splitting.  Conservatives may have benefited from splits in the establishment in districts 20 and 72.

Money is essential  Money does not guarantee victory, but it is essential to get your message out.  This is particularly true in local elections, which are often decided by name recognition.  Look at how much winning conservative candidates raised.
Bob Howey 57K
Steve Marino 69K
John Reilly 46K
Julie Alexander 86K
Beth Griffin 81K
Tommy Brann 77K
Shane Hernandez 35K
Ben Frederick 101K
Scott VanSingel 49K

The candidate who raised the most money won in 19 of 26 primaries in open Republican seats (three others were very close seconds).  I have written before that the minimum amount needed to be a credible candidate is $30,000.  This year, there were three open Republican seats where no Republican raised that much (79, 99, 108), though all those winners were over $20,000.  Only two winners raised less than $20,000.  Jeff Noble raised 16K, had Tea Party support and the endorsement of Pat Colbeck, and pulled the upset in district 20.

Exceptions are exceptional  There is one huge exception to the above points.  Steven Johnson, an unemployed 25-year-old military veteran and Christian constitutional conservative won district 72 with 30% in a five candidate field.  He raised only 6K (most from him and his parents) yet beat two well-funded candidates and two elected officials.  This mirrors Aaron Miller's similarly unlikely win in 2014.  So it is possible for a candidate who works hard to catch on with voters without the usual advantages.  But it definitely isn't the way to bet, and it shouldn't be an excuse to ignore the usual path to victory.

Wednesday, August 03, 2016

2016 August Primary Election Results

Congress:
1 (R) Bergman 39 Casperson 32 Allen 28
Great win for a good conservative over two moderate legislators.  Allen won only Grand Traverse and Leelanau.  Casperson won at least 52% in every county in his district, and at most 35% in all counties outside it.  Bergman was first or second in every county.
(D) Johnson 72 Cannon 28
This will be an interesting race in the fall.
10 (R) Mitchell 38, Pavlov 28, Sanborn 16, Forlini 10, VanAssche 8
Mitchell's anti-tax advocacy was money well spent.  Pavlov only won Huron and St. Clair.
13 (D) Conyers 60 Winfrey 40
Conyers will only leave on a stretcher.

State Senate
4 (D) Conyers 37 Durhal 27 Score one for name recognition.

Michigan State House:
1 (D) Banks 45 Sossi 35  Banks will only leave in handcuffs.
20 Noble 40 Roosen 38  Tea Party wins with Colbeck endorsement.
23 Howey wins 77-14
24 Marino wins 80-17
30 Farrington 40 Shallal 39 (54 votes)
32 Hornberger 40 Schmina 33
33 Yaroch 37 Carl 28
46 Reilly beats Kent 31 votes.  Big win for Tea Party, barring recount.
57 Kahle 63 Cottrell 29
64 Alexander 42 Tripp 30
66 Griffin 61 Nilson 31  Griffin is Tea Party with establishment support.
70 Lower 45 Van Kleeck 20
72 Johnson 30 Noto 23
77 Brann 90 Murin 10
79 LaSata 54 Arnt 30  At least Pscholka's guy didn't win.
83 Hernandez 47 Muxlow 31  Big win for Tea Party candidate with good fundraising and endorsements.
85 Frederick 66 Aue 23  Good candidate.
86 Albert 31 Johnson 29 Henry 23
89 Lilly 60 Stille 32
97 Wentworth 42 Link 24
99 Hauck 65 Stressman 35
100 VanSingel 76 Wilterink 16
101 VanderWall 58 Walter 28
102 Hoitenga 34 Langworthy 28  Langworthy has been 2nd three times (04, 10, 16).
103 Rendon 81 Kumar 19  Good since Kumar faces sex crime charges.
104 Inman 60 Gillman 40  Closest R primary challenge.
106 (R) Allor 37 Krawczak 35 
(D) Kennedy 51 Kieliszewski 49  Preferred D candidate loses.
107 Chatfield 73 Twardy 27
108 (R) LaFave 44 Arcand 32
(D) Celello 58 Dziedzic 42  The top D recruit wins an unimpressive victory.

All incumbents won.  The establishment and top fundraisers won most races.  The Tea Party candidates with the best fundraising and endorsements (Noble, Reilly, Hernandez) won.

Kalamazoo County:
Prosecutor (D) Getting 66 Payne 34  Payne won the Northside.
Sheriff (R) Heppler 68 Munn 32 (D) Fuller 76 Swafford 24
Treasurer (D) Sahu 51 Jackson 49

County Commission:
4 (D) Seals 66 Thompson 34
6 (R) Kendall 39 Carahaly 35 Brooks 26  Kendall worked hard here.
9 (R) Shugars 76 Kovacik 24

Alamo Supervisor: Hyet 69 Conti 31
Comstock Supervisor:
(R) Bloomfield 64 White 36
(D) Thompson 64 Cherry 36
Comstock trustees: (R) Amos, Beister, Austin, McIver win
Cooper Supervisor: Sorenson 69 Rakow 31
Kalamazoo Township Clerk: Miller 43 Goodacre 33 Thall 24  Incumbent last.
Oshtemo Treasurer: Culp 61 Taylor 39  Haha!
No word on R write-ins yet.
Pavilion Supervisor: White 79 Randles 21
Richland Supervisor: Harma 46 Chalker 40 Byrne 15
Schoolcraft Supervisor: Ulsh 58 McMillan 29 Allen 13
Texas Supervisor: Hinkle 57 VanderRoest 43
Texas Treasurer: Cutting 50 Roberts 50 (Tie! Recount!)
Texas trustees: Mazer, Brown, Boven, Loeks win.

Sunday, July 31, 2016

Primary Recommendations

There are a bunch of contested primary elections on Tuesday.  It can be hard to find good information about these races.  What follows is this blog's judgement about who is the best conservative for each position.  Recommendations are in bold.

Congress:
District 1:  State senator Tom Casperson and former senator Jason Allen are attacking each other for voting to raise taxes, and both are correct.  General Jack Bergman is a solid conservative in the race, with a particularly good position on immigration.

District 10:  This one is tougher.  Businessman David VanAssche supports amnesty. State rep Anthony Forlini voted for Proposal 1, Medicaid expansion, and against Right to Work. Former state senator Alan Sanborn voted conservative in the legislature, but has raised almost nothing in this race. Senator Phil Pavlov voted right on Medicaid expansion, Proposal 1, and the Amazon tax, but wrong on the Hollywood subsidies. He also avoided discussion of Common Core for years before finally coming out against it. Businessman Paul Mitchell hasn't held office and his positions aren't clear on everything, but he earned a lot of goodwill for funding the opposition to Proposal 1.

Michigan State House:
20. Pastor Jeff Noble is endorsed by Pat Colbeck.
23. Trenton Councilman Bob Howey is endorsed by Right to Life and is running the strongest campaign is this vulnerable seat.
24. Macomb County Commissioner Steve Marino is endorsed by Right to Life and is running the most credible campaign.
30. no clear choice
32. no clear choice
33. Colleen Carl, daughter of the late senator Doug Carl, comes from a conservative family.
46. Businessman John Reilly nearly beat Bradford Jacobsen two years ago, and is back this year.  He is endorsed by Tom McMillin.
57. Bronna Kahle is endorsed by Michigan Right to Life and is running the most credible campaign in this vulnerable district.
64. County commissioner Julie Alexander seems to be a decent conservative.
66. County commissioner Beth Griffin, a Tea Party member, is endorsed by Michigan Right to Life.
70. James Lower is endorsed by the NRA.
72. no clear choice
77. Restaurant owner Tommy Brann is fairly conservative.
79. no clear choice
80. Conservative activist Abigail Nobel is challenging incumbent Mary Whiteford.
83. Conservative activist Shane Hernandez, an active Tea Party and GOP leader, is running.
85. Owosso Mayor Ben Frederick seems to be a good conservative.
86. Lawyer Katherine Henry is endorsed by Justin Amash and Pat Colbeck.
89. no clear choice
97. no clear choice
99. Township Trustee Roger Hauck is endorsed by the NRA.
100. Accountant/businessman Scott VanSingel is endorsed by Gary Glenn and John Bumstead.
101. County commissioner Curt VanderWall is endorsed by the NRA and is running the most credible campaign in this vulnerable district.
102. no clear choice
103. Daire Rendon is a clear choice over Vijay Kumar, who has been charged with sex crimes.
104. Former county commissioner and Rightmi.com owner Jason Gillman was endorsed by the NRA over moderate incumbent Larry Inman.
106. no clear choice
107. State rep. Lee Chatfield has made a couple bad votes since ousting moderate Frank Foster.  But he is still more conservative than Kathy Twardy, who is backed by supporters of Foster.
108. Veteran Alan Arcand is solidly conservative, but may have trouble in this vulnerable district.

Input from conservatives across Michigan is welcome.

Saturday, July 30, 2016

Beth Griffin for State Representative

Michigan's 66th state house district, which covers Van Buren County and Alamo, Cooper, and Parchment in Kalamazoo County, is open due to term limits.  There are three Republican candidates.  The best choice for conservatives is Beth Griffin.

Griffin is a Van Buren County Commissioner who was first elected in 2012.  She is a longtime member of the VanKal Tea Party.  She is solely endorsed by Michigan Right to Life, and has an Aq rating from the NRA.

Her main opponent, Matthew Nilson is not endorsed by Michigan Right to Life and has a C- rating from the NRA.

Beth Griffin is the best choice for conservatives.

Tuesday, July 26, 2016

2016 Michigan State House Races

Last updated July 29, 2016.

Cross-posted at The Western RightRight Michigan, and Red Racing Horses.

All 110 seats in the Michigan House of Representatives will be up for election in November. Republicans won a 63-47 majority in 2014, up from 59-41 after 2012. There are 42 open seats, 27 held by Republicans and 15 held by democrats. There are 41 open due to term-limits and 1 (Gretchen Driskell) just seeking another office.

Republicans picked up four seats (62, 71, 84, 91) in 2014.

Democrats are hoping to take back the state house. They will benefit from higher turnout in a presidential year and possibly coattails from the presidential race. They will try to take advantage of Republican support for a tax increase for roads and Governor Snyder's handling of the Flint water crisis, though state house candidates had nothing to do with the latter. There are also many Republican seats first won in 2010 that are now term-limited. Republicans may benefit from the recent elimination of straight ticket voting.

There are a number of interesting primaries in August. 2014 saw a number of primaries between establishment and Tea Party/antiestablishment conservatives. While the establishment won the majority of them, the antiestablishment won enough that the relatively conservative faction of the state house won the leadership races. The state house has served as a check on some of the Governor's less conservative plans.

This year, there are contests between relatively conservative candidates backed by the state house establishment, more moderate establishment candidates, and some antiestablishment conservatives supported by various Tea Parties and the Michigan Prosperity Project. Most primary battles are in open seats, but there are a few primary challenges to incumbents worth watching.

State house fundraising is analyzed in this article.





2016 Unofficial Michigan Primary Candidate Listing

The following lists district number, current incumbent, geographic description, 2012 and 2014 state house results, 2012 Romney %, and political rating. I did not use 'likely' in the general election ratings. Candidates are labeled as establishment (E), conservative (C), Tea Party (T), and antiestablishment conservative (AC), when these labels clearly apply. Candidates solely endorsed by Michigan Right to Life (RTL) are also noted.

1. (Brian Banks) [Detroit] 29-71, 31-69, 23.5%, Safe D
(D) Brian Banks won the 2012 primary before his long criminal record and ethical issues were exposed. He won a 2014 primary against divided opposition. This year, he again faces divided opposition and also new felony charges.
2. (OPEN-Alberta Tinsley Talibi) [Detroit] 26-72, 33-67, 23.8%, Safe D
3. (Wendell Byrd) [Detroit] 3-96, 3-97, 1.6%, Safe D
4. (Rose Robinson) [Detroit] 5-95, 5-95, 3.4%, Safe D
5. (Fred Durhal III) [Detroit] 6-94, 5-95, 2.7%, Safe D
6. (Stephanie Chang) [Detroit] 5-92, 6-94, 5.3%, Safe D
7. (LaTanya Garrett) [Detroit] 2-98, 2-98, 0.9%, Safe D
8. (Sherry Gay-Dagnogo) [Detroit] 3-97, 3-97, 2%, Safe D
9. (OPEN-Harvey Santana) [Detroit] 5-95, 4-96, 3.3%, Safe D
10. (Leslie Love) [Detroit] 14-86, 18-82, 16.4%, Safe D
11. (OPEN-Julie Plawecki) [Inkster, Garden City] 28-72, 30-70, 29.3%, Safe D
(D) This seat is open after Julie Plawecki's sudden death. There will be a special primary August 30. Party insiders picked Inkster Councilman Jewell Jones for the full term.
12. (Erika Geiss) [Taylor, Romulus] 25-75, 30-70, 29.5%, Safe D
13. (Frank Liberati) [Southgate, Allen Park, Dearborn Heights] 35-65, 39-61, 40.3%, Safe D
14. (OPEN-Paul Clemente) [Riverview, Wyandotte, Lincoln Park, Melvindale] 26-71, 30-70, 34.9%, Safe D
15. (OPEN-George Darany) [Dearborn] 25-75, 32-68, 33.5%, Safe D
16. (Robert Kosowski) [Westland, Wayne] 28-68, 32-68, 33.3%, Safe D
17. (Bill Lavoy) [N Monroe, Sumpter, Huron] 39-61, 40-60, 45.3%, Safe D
18. (OPEN-Sarah Roberts) [St. Clair Shores, Eastpointe] 34-64, 38-62, 40.7%, Safe D
19. (Laura Cox) [Livonia] 60-40, 62-38, 52%, Safe R
20. (OPEN-Kurt Heise) [Plymouth, Northville] 56-44, 60-40, 51.8%, Lean R
(R) (Lean Nielson) Attorney Jeffrey Neilson, pastor Jeff Noble (AC), and Northville Township Trustee Chris Roosen are running.
21. (Kristy Pagan) [Canton, Van Buren] 38-62, 45-55, 43.3%, Safe D
22. (John Chirkun) [Roseville, E Warren] 30-70, 32-64, 36.2%, Safe D
23. (OPEN-Pat Somerville) [SE Wayne] 50.5-49.5, 52.1-47.9, 47.5%, Tossup
Pat Somerville won three close victories in this seat, which is the top D target.
(R) (Likely Howey) Trenton Councilman Bob Howey (E/RTL) faces Michael Frazier and Mike Taylor.
(D) Township Clerk Sherry Berecz, Parks commissioner Darin Calmilleri, Trenton councilmember Steve Rzeppa, and Elayne Petrucci are running.
24. (OPEN-Anthony Forlini) [Harrison, N Clinton, SW Macomb] 54.7-45.3, 59-39, Lean R
(R) (Likely Marino) Macomb County Commissioner Steve Marino (E/RTL), Arzo Smith, and Darrel Smith are running.
25. (Henry Yanez) [E Sterling Heights, NC Warren] 48.6-51.4, 46.5-53.5, 47.8%, Safe D
26. (OPEN-Jim Townsend) [Royal Oak, Madison Heights] 36-60, 39-61, 40.3%, Safe D
27. (Robert Whittenberg) [Oak Park, Ferndale, Hazel Park] 20-76, 24-76, 24.8%, Safe D
28. (OPEN-Derek Miller) [W Warren, Center Line] 21-79, 36-64, 35.8%, Safe D
29. (Tim Greimel) [Pontiac, Auburn Hills, Orchard Lake] 23-77, 26-74, 23.9%, Safe D
30. (OPEN-Jeff Farrington) [W Sterling Heights, Utica, SE Shelby] 53.3-46.7, 55-45, 51.5%, Lean R
(R) (Likely Farrington) Diana Farrington (E), wife of the incumbent, faces Joseph Bogdan, Jackie Ryan, and Michael Shallal.
31. (OPEN-Marilyn Lane) [S Clinton, Fraser, Mt. Clemens] 34-62, 39-61, 41.8%, Safe D
32. (OPEN-Andrea LaFontaine) [Chesterfield, C St. Clair] 59-41, 62-38, 53.9%, Safe R
(R) (Lean Hornberger) School board treasurer Pamela Hornberger (E), Michael Schmina, and Justin Tranchita are running.
33. (OPEN-Ken Goike) [NE Macomb, Macomb Twp.] 62-38, 66-34, 56.2%, Safe R
(R) (Tossup) city councilman Jeff Yaroch, Mel Koch, Colleen Carl (C) daughter of late state senator Douglas Carl (1986-1997), Julianne Cusumano, Chales Karafa, and Steven Stoll are running.
34. (Sheldon Neeley) [Flint] 13-87, 9-91, 8.3%, Safe D
35. (Jeremy Moss) [Southfield] 17-83, 17-83, 17.6%, Safe D
36. (Peter Lucido) [Shelby, Washington, Bruce] 64-36, 70-30, 61%, Safe R
37. (Kristine Greig) [Farmington] 38-62, 43-57, 40.3%, Safe D
38. (Kathy Crawford) [Novi, Lyon] 59-41, 63-37, 53.6%, Safe R
39. (Klint Kesto) [W West Bloomfield, Commerce, Wixom] 53.3-46.7, 52.3-47.7, 51.5%, Lean R
40. (Michael McCready) [Bloomfield, Birmingham, E West Bloomfield] 57-41, 58-42, 52.8%, Safe R
41. (Martin Howrylak) [Troy, Clawson] 50.5-49.5, 56-44, 51.6%, Lean R
42. (Lana Theis) [SE Livingston] 63-33, 65-35, 60.2%, Safe R
43. (Jim Tedder) [Waterford, Independence] 66-34, 58-42, 54.8%, Safe R
44. (Jim Runestad) [Springfield, White Lake, Highland, Milford] 63-33, 68-32, 59.1%, Safe R
45. (Michael Webber) [Rochester, S Oakland Twp] 56-44, 56-44, 55.9%, Safe R
46. (OPEN-Bradford Jacobsen) [NE Oakland] 64-36, 69-31, 60.1%, Safe R
(R) (Tossup) Bradford Jacobsen narrowly beat back a primary challenge 54-46 from John Reilly in 2014. This time, Reilly (AC) faces Joe Kent (E).
47. (Henry Vaupel) [N Livingston] 64-32, 69-27, 62.5%, Safe R
48. (Pam Faris) [NE Genesee] 36-64, 38-62, 39.8%, Safe D
49. (Phil Phelps) [Flint Twp., Mt. Morris, SW Flint] 25-75, 26-74, 28.8%, Safe D
50. (OPEN-Charles Smiley) [Burton, Grand Blanc, Mundy] 39-61, 41-59, 42.7%, Safe D
51. (Joe Graves) [W Genesee, Fenton, NW Oakland] 54.3-45.7, 58-42, 53.1%, Safe R
52. (OPEN-Gretchen Driskell) [W Washtenaw] 47-53, 44-56, 47.5%, Safe D
This seat is open since Driskell, who beat an incumbent R in 2012, is running for Congress.
(D) Road commissioner Barb Fuller and school board treasurer Donna Lasinski are running.
53. (OPEN-Jeff Irwin) [Ann Arbor] 19-81, 18-82, 19.5%, Safe D
54. (OPEN-David Rutledge) [Ypsilanti] 23-77, 25-75, 23.8%, Safe D
55. (Adam Zemke) [Pittsfield, NE Ann Arbor, York, Augusta] 32-65, 32-68, 31.6%, Safe D
56. (Jason Sheppard) [S Monroe] 58-42, 50.3-47.1, 50.6%, Lean R
Jason Sheppard narrowly beat Tom Redmond in 2014 and faces a rematch in 2016.
57. (OPEN-Nancy Jenkins) [Lenawee] 52.5-47.5, 59-41, 49.9%, Tossup
(R) Senior center director Bronna Khale (E/RTL), Jim Cottrell, and Brian Good are running.
58. (Eric Leutheuser) [Branch, Hillsdale] 70-30, 71-29, 60.1%, Safe R
59. (Aaron Miller) [St. Joseph, E Cass] 62-38, 62-38, 54.7%, Safe R
60. (Jon Hoadley) [Kalamazoo, Kalamazoo Twp.] 26-74, 30-70, 26.8%, Safe D
61. (Brandt Iden) [Portage, Oshtemo, Texas, Schoolcraft, Prairie Ronde] 58-42, 48.4-42.7, 49.1%, Lean R
Iden, who hurt himself by lying about a DUI in 2014, faces a rematch with liberal pastor John Fisher.
62. (John Bizon) [Battle Creek, Albion, N Calhoun] 42-58, 51.2-48.8, 43.8%, Tossup
Dr. Bizon faces Calhoun County Commissioner Jim Haadsma in this dem-leaning district.
63. (David Maturen) [E Kalamazoo, S Calhoun] 50.9-49.1, 56-44, 54.6%, Safe R
64. (OPEN-Earl Poleski) [Jackson city, W Jackson] 56-44, 61-39, 51.2%, Lean R
(R) (Lean Alexander) Jackson County Commissioner Julie Alexander, John Griffin, brother of the last D to hold this seat, and car dealer Phil Tripp are running.
65. (Brett Roberts) [N Jackson, SE Eaton] 57-43, 57-40, 53.4%, Safe R
66. (OPEN-Aric Nesbitt) [Van Buren, Cooper, Alamo, Parchment] 59-41, 57-43, 49.7%, Lean R
(R) (Likely Griffin) Van Buren County Commissioner Beth Griffin (E/T/RTL) faces Greg Kolich and veteran Matthew Nilson.
67. (Tom Cochran) [S Ingham] 44-56, 46-54, 44.8%, Safe D
68. (Andy Schor) [Lansing] 23-77, 23-77, 24.6%, Safe D
69. (Sam Singh) [East Lansing, Meridian] 35-65, 32-68, 35.9%, Safe D
70. (OPEN-Rick Outman) [Montcalm, N Gratiot] 54.5-45.5, 62-38, 52.6%, Safe R
(R) (Lean Lower) Former county commissioner James Lower (E), Alexander Gregory, Charles Mulholland, Jeremy Putansu, Dale Reyburn, and Michael Van Kleeck are running.
71. (Tom Barrett) [Eaton] 46.6-53.4, 50.4-49.6, 47.3%, Tossup
Tom Barrett beat dem state rep. Theresa Abed in 2014. She is back for a rematch in 2016.
72. (OPEN-Ken Yonker) [Kentwood, Gaines, NE Allegan] 59-38, 68-32, 56.3%, Safe R
(R) (Tossup) Teacher Ryan Gallogly, restaurateur Tony Noto, Bill Hirsch, Steven Johnson, and Robert Coughlin are running.
73. (Chris Afendoulis) [Grand Rapids Twp, Plainfield, NE Kent] 64-32, 68-32, 60.9%, Safe R
74. (Rob Verhuelen) [Grandville, Walker, Alpine, NW Kent] 66-34, 69-31, 60.4%, Safe R
75. (Dave LaGrand) [central Grand Rapids] 24-76, 26-74, 23.8%, Safe D
76. (Winnie Brinks) [peripheral Grand Rapids] 39-52, 45.6-52.1, 44.2%, Safe D
77. (OPEN-Thomas Hooker) [Wyoming, Byron] 60-36, 67-33, 58.3%, Safe R
(R) (Safe Brann) Restaurant owner Tommy Brann (E/C) faces Frank Murin.
78. (Dave Pagel) [S Berrien, SW Cass] 61-39, 67-33, 56.1%, Safe R
79. (OPEN-Al Pscholka) [N Berrien] 52.8-45.7, 59-39, 51.5%, Lean R (R) (Tossup) Realtor Ryan Arnt, teacher Kim LaSata, wife of former rep (1998-2004) Charles LaSata, Mary Brown, and Troy Rolling are running.
80. (Mary Whiteford) [Allegan] 62-38, 63-34, 57.6%, Safe R
(R) (Likely Whiteford) Mary Whiteford won a special election in March 2016 to replace expelled rep. Cindy Gamrat. She faces a primary against Abigail Nobel (C/T) this time.
81. (Dan Lauwers) [NW, E St. Clair] 53.8-46.2, 65-35, 55%, Safe R
82. (Gary Howell) [Lapeer] 59-41, 55-45, 55.1%, Safe R
83. (OPEN-Paul Muxlow) [Sanilac, Port Huron] 56-44, 62-38, 52.5%, Lean R
(R) (Tossup) Sanilac County Commissioner Justin Faber, conservative activist Shane Hernandez (C/T), and Matt Muxlow (son of the incumbent) are running.
84. (Edward Canfield) [Tuscola, Huron] 38-53, 59-41, 53-43, 55.6%, Safe R
85. (OPEN-Ben Glardon) [Shiawassee, W Saginaw] 54-40, 53-43, 48.9%, Lean R
(R) (Likely Frederick) Owosso Mayor Ben Frederick (C/E) faces Shiawassee County Commissioner Hartmann Aue. Robert Cotrell, and George Sode are also running.
86. (OPEN-Lisa Posthumus Lyons) [SE Kent, N Ionia] 70-30, 66-34, 63%, Safe R
(R) (Tossup) Marine Thomas Albert, attorney Katherine Henry (C), Jeffrey Johnson, and Bartholomew Lower are running.
87. (OPEN-Mike Callton) [Barry, S Ionia] 62-35, 67-33, 58.7%, Safe R
(R) Ionia County Commissioner Julie Calley, wife of LG Brian Calley, is unopposed in the primary.
88. (Roger Victory) [NE Ottawa] 87-0, 80-20, 72.9%, Safe R
89. (OPEN-Amanda Price) [W Ottawa] 66-34, 68-32, 61.6%, Safe R
(R) (Likely Lilly) Banker Jim Lilly (E/RTL) is the favorite over blogger Brandon Hall (AC), and Tracy Stille-Mulligan.
90. (Daniela Garcia) [Holland] 100-0, 78-22, 66.5%, Safe R
91. (Holly Hughes) [S, W Muskegon] 47.3-48.1, 46.5-46.3, 48.5%, Tossup
Holly Hughes defeated dem state rep. Colleen LaMonte in 2014, who defeated her in 2012. LaMonte is back for a rematch in 2016.
92. (OPEN-Marcia Hovey Wright) [Muskegon city] 27-73, 33-67, 31.3%, Safe D
93. (Tom Leonard) [S Gratiot, Clinton] 57-43, 56-35, 52.9%, Safe R
94. (Tim Kelly) [Saginaw Twp, E Saginaw] 56-44, 62-38, 55.7%, Safe R
95. (Vanessa Guerra) [Saginaw city] 22-78, 24-76, 24.8%, Safe D
96. (OPEN-Charles Brunner) [Bay] 31-69, 32-68, 45.3%, Safe D
(D) Principal Brian DuFresne, former county commissioner Brian Elder, and county commissioner Donald Tilley are running.
97. (OPEN-Joel Johnson) [Arenac, Gladwin, Clare, E Osceola] 62-38, 63-37, 53.2%, Lean R
(R) (Lean Wentworth) Veteran Jason Wentworth, George Gilmore, Brian Johnson, Jacob Link, and Thomas Winarski are running.
98. (Gary Glenn) [C Midland, N Bay] 59-41, 55-45, 56%, Safe R
99. (OPEN-Kevin Cotter) [Isabella, W Midland] 57-43, 51.5-48.5, 48.1%, Tossup
(R) (Lean Hauck) Township Trustee Roger Hauck and realtor Robin Stressman are running.
(D) Bryan Mielke is running again after coming close in 2014.
100. (OPEN-Jon Bumstead) [Newaygo, Oceana, Lake] 62-38, 63-37, 55.5%, Safe R
(R) (Likely VanSingel) Accountant/businessman Scott VanSingel (C/E), John Wilterink and Dan Eley are running.
101. (OPEN-Ray Franz) [Leelanau, Benzie, Manistee, Mason] 51-49, 50.4-49.6, 50.7%, Tossup
(R) (Likely VanderWall) Mason county commissioner Curt VanderWall, Mark Walter, and Cary Urka are running.
102. (OPEN-Phil Potvin) [Wexford, W Osceola, Mecosta] 54.8-45.2, 60-40, 56.3%, Safe R
(R) (Tossup) Veteran Jason Briscoe, Manton Mayor Michelle Hoitenga, party official Ormand Hook, and Morris Langworthy, who came close in 2010 and 2004, are running.
103. (OPEN-Bruce Rendon) [Kalkaska, Crawford, Missaukee, Roscommon, Ogemaw] 52.8-47.2, 60-34, 55.9%, Lean R
(R) (Likely Rendon) Daire Rendon (E/RTL), wife of the incumbent, faces self-funding doctor Vijay Kumar, who has been charged with sexual abuse.
104. (Larry Inman) [Grand Traverse] 57-43, 53.2-46.8, 55.4%, Lean R
(R) (Likely Inman) Inman (E) won the Republican primary in 2014 with 21%. He is being challenged by former county commissioner Jason Gillman (AC).
105. (Triston Cole) [Antrim, Charlevoix, Otsego, Montmorency, Oscoda] 67-33, 63-37, 58.5%, Safe R
106. (OPEN-Peter Petallia) [E Cheboygan, Presque Isle, Alpena, Alcona, Iosco] 52.2-45.3, 55-45, 53.6%, Lean R
(R) (Tossup) Cheboygan County Commissioner Sue Allor, David Chandler, Chamber of Commerce official Jackie Krawczak, and Benishek staffer Jesse Osmer are running.
107. (Lee Chatfield) [Emmet, Mackinac, Chippewa, N Cheboygan] 58-42, 61-39, 55.5%, Safe R
(R) (Likely Chatfield) Lee Chatfield (C/E) defeated incumbent moderate Republican Frank Foster in the 2014 primary. Supporters of Foster are backing Sioux Sioux Ste Marie City Commissioner Kathy Twardy this year.
108. (OPEN-Ed McBroom) [Delta, Menominee, Dickinson] 54.6-45.4, 60-40, 54.6%, Tossup
(R) Veteran Alan Arcand (AC), Beau LaFave, and Darryl Shann are running.
109. (John Kivela) [Marquette, Alger, Schoolcraft, Luce] 42-58, 34-66, 45.4%, Safe D
(D) Kivela was arrested for 'super drunk' driving last year. He is being challenged by Marquette City Commissioner Sara Cambensy.
110. (Scott Dianda) [W Upper Peninsula] 48.4-51.6, 39-61, 51.6%, Safe D

Ratings:
Safe D: 47
Lean D: 0
Tossup: 8
Lean R: 17
Safe R: 38

Monday, July 25, 2016

2016 Michigan State House Fundraising

July 22 was the deadline for campaign finance reports for Michigan legislature.  Here are summaries of the total amounts raised in competitive Republican primaries and general elections for Michigan state house.  Primary ratings are included.  XX means the report has yet to be filed.

1. (D) Banks 136K Sossi 30K Broman 11K Youson 6K
20. (R) (Lean Nielson) Nielson 79K (37K self) Roosen 24K Noble 16K
23. (R) (Likely Howey) Howey 57K (25K self) Frazier XX Taylor 2K
    (D) (Tossup) Berecz 60K (26K self) Rzeppa 54K Camilleri 53K Petrucci 5K
24. (R) (Safe Marino) Marino 69K (35K self) D Smith 2K
    (D) Peterson 59K
30. (R) (Likely Farrington) Farrington 59K Shallal 14K Bogdan 3K
    (D) Notte 36K Spica 6K
32. (R) (Lean Hornberger) Hornberger 44K Shmina 19K Tranchita XX
33. (R) (Tossup) Yaroch 52K (49K self) Koch 21K Carl 15K Karafa 12K
39. (R) Kesto 151K (D) Stack 22K
41. (R) Howrylak 77K (D) Peltonon 4K
46. (R) (Tossup) Kent 97K (27K self) Reilly 46K
52. (R) Clark 13K (D) Fuller 116K Lasinski 99K
56. (R) Sheppard 102K (D) Redmond 18K
57. (R) (Likely Kahle) Kahle 73K Cottrell 10K Good $100 (D) Wimple 19K
60. (R) Ross 1K (D) Hoadley 84K
61. (R) Iden 125K (D) Fisher 26K
62. (R) Bizon 106K (D) Haadsma 55K
63. (R) Maturen 32K (D) Shiflea waiver
64. (R) (Lean Alexander) Griffin 92K Alexander 86K Tripp 65K (36K self)
    (D) Brooks 13K
66. (R) (Likely Griffin) Griffin 81K (40K self) Nilson 10K (6K self)
    (D) Brown 57K
70. (R) (Lean Lower) Lower 47K (17K self) VanKleek 10K Mulholland 6K Reyburn 5K Putansu XX
71. (R) Barrett 122K (D) Abed 43K
72. (R) (Tossup) Gallogly 33K Noto 25K Coughlin 12K Johnson 6K Hirsch 2K
76. (R) O'Neill 34K (D) Brinks 70K
77. (R) (Safe Brann) Brann 77K (51K self)
79. (R) (Tossup) Arnt 24K LaSata 23K Rolling 3K
80. (R) (Likely Whiteford) Whiteford 26K Nobel 8K
83. (R) (Tossup) Hernandez 35K Muxlow 26K Faber 20K (10K self)
85. (R) (Likely Frederick) Frederick 101K Aue 27K
    (D) Karhoff 8K Hovarth 6K Surprenant 5K
86. (R) (Tossup) Johnson 47K (38K self) Henry 43K (40K self) Albert 36K VanderWerff 3K Lower 2K
89. (R) (Likely Lilly) Lilly 85K Mulligan 37K Hall $100
91. (R) Hughes 166K (D) Lamonte 104K
96. (D) Elder 37K (26K self) Tilley 25K (10K self) DuFresne 18K
97. (R) (Lean Wentworth) Wentworth 41K (21K self) Gilmore 20K (16K self) Link 19K (12K self) Winarski 16K (7K self)
98. (R) Glenn 168K (D) Malicoat 13K
99. (R) (Lean Hauck) Hauck 26K Stressman 26K (D) Mielke 91K
100. (R) (Likely VanSingel) VanSingel 49K (17K self) Wilterink 7K
101. (R) (Likely VanderWall) VandelWall 38K (21K self) Walter 8K (D) Scripps 88K
102. (R) (Tossup) Hoitenga 44K (30K self) Hook 41K Briscoe 8K Langworthy 4K
103. (R) (Likely Rendon) Kumar 139K self Rendon 62K (D) Stancil 29K
104. (R) (Likely Inman) Inman 112K Gillman 22K (8K self) (D) Coffia 24K
106. (R) (Tossup) Allor 67K (56K self) Krawkzac 33K Osmer 27K Chandler 8K self
    (D) Kieliszewski 53K Kennedy 15K
107. (R) (Likely Chatfield) Chatfield 166K Twardy 23K (8K self)
108. (R) (Tossup) Lafave 27K Shann 17K Arcand 6K
    (D) Celello 56K Dziedzic 7K
109. (D) Kivela 23K Cambensey 6K

Thursday, July 07, 2016

Michigan Right to Life Endorsements

Michigan Right to Life has just issued its endorsements for the 2016 primary.  RTL swings a significant number of Michigan primary voters, so its endorsements will decide some races.

RTL will recommend all candidates if they are all pro-life, but if there is a serious non-pro-life candidate, they will pick one pro-life candidate to endorse.  Their noteworthy endorsements are listed below.

Congress:
1. Allen, Bergman, and Casperson meet criteria.
3. Justin Amash is endorsed after nonendorsements in 2012 and 2014.
6. Fred Upton is again endorsed, despite his long pro-abortion record.
10. All five Rs meet criteria.

State House:
20: All meet criteria
23: Bob Howey
24: Steve Marino
25: Ronald Albers
30: All meet criteria
32: All meet criteria
33: All but Stoll meet criteria
46: All meet criteria
57: Bronna Kahle
64: All meet criteria
66: Beth Griffin
70: Lower, Mulholland, Reyburn, Van Kleeck meet criteria
72: All meet criteria
77: All meet criteria
79: All meet criteria
83: All meet criteria
85: Aue and Frederick meet criteria
86: All meet criteria
89: Jim Lilly
96: (D) Brian Elder
97: All meet criteria
99: All meet criteria
100: VanSingel and Wilterink meet criteria
101: Vanderwall and Walter meet criteria
102: All meet criteria
103: Daire Rendon
106: All meet criteria
108: All meet criteria

Kalamazoo County Commission:
5: Chad Dillon
6: Frank Brooks
7: Roger Tuinier
9: Dale Shugars
10: Jerry Whitaker
11: Scott McGraw

NRA Endorsements

The NRA has released its grades for contested state house races.  They endorse all incumbents who meet their minimum criteria.  They endorsed in some, but not all open seats.  Notable grades and endorsements (in bold) include:

20: Noble and Roosen get Aq.  Nielson gets a D.
33: Carl, Koch, and Yaroch get Aq.
66: Griffin and Kolich get Aq.  Nilson gets C-.
70: Lower gets Aq.
72: Noto and Johnson get Aq.
77: Brann gets B-.
85: Frederick and Aue get Aq.
86: Henry and Johnson get Aq.
89: Lilly get Aq
97: Gilmore and Link get Aq.
99: Hauck gets Aq, Stressman gets C.
100: VanSingel and Wilterink get Aq.
101: VanderWall gets Aq.
103: Rendon gets Aq.
104: Gillman gets Aq and endorsement over Inman C.  This is the only endorsement of a primary challenger to an incumbent.
107: Chatfield gets A+ over Twardy C+.

Saturday, April 09, 2016

6th District Shenanigans

The Michigan GOP convention held its district caucuses Friday night. The purpose of the caucus was to elect delegates and three alternates to the national convention in Cleveland. For many years, the 6th district has used an allocation plan that distributes delegates and alternates among the counties by sex. (For example, Allegan County gets a female alternate.) This allocation prevented anyone from one county (St. Joseph) from running for anything, people from two others (Allegan and Van Buren) from running for delegate, and many from running based on their sex.  Restricting delegates based on sex arguably violates state rules, but objections to this policy were not sustained.  Only 34% of state convention delegates were allowed to run for national delegate under this plan.

Unlike previous presidential elections, this time candidates for delegate had to pledge support to a particular candidate prior to the caucus. The sixth district (like all districts) got one delegate/alternate pair for Trump, Cruz, and Kasich. The establishment rules committee proposed rules affirming this allocation. Supporters of Cruz offered an alternative set of rules to split into three subcaucuses, one for each candidate, to elect the delegate and alternate pledged to each candidate. After much discussion, the alternate proposal failed 67-81, and the establishment rules passed by a larger margin.

Four counties had had meetings days before the caucus to pick who they wanted as their delegate or alternate (this should not have been binding on the caucus but was treated as such).  This included delegates pledged to Cruz and Trump, which meant that only the Kasich delegate was left.

Kalamazoo went into a subcaucus.  Several supporters of Cruz (including me) and Trump tried to run for delegate, and were told that this was not allowed.  I pointed out that allocating candidates' delegates by county was not in the rules.  We argued with party officials, then stood around for half an hour or so.  Then we were called back into the room and a motion was made to set up a slate allocating the delegates and alternates by county, sex, and presidential candidate (tacitly admitting that my objection was correct).  The motion passed, and I was prevented from running.  Kalamazoo County went back to sub-caucus and voted on our Kasich delegate and Cruz alternate.  The establishment slate was passed without opposition, as everyone was exhausted after over three hours in caucus.

Delegate - Cass - Male - Cruz - Vic Fitz, 6th District Chairman, county prosecutor
Delegate - Kalamazoo - Male - Kasich - Scott McGraw, county chairman, county commissioner
Delegate - Berrien - Female - Trump - Sharon Tyler, county clerk
Alternate - Allegan - Female - Kasich - Mary Whiteford, state representative
Alternate - Kalamazoo - Male - Cruz - Bonnie Landrum, local activist
Alternate - Van Buren - Male - Trump - Paul DeYoung, Register of Deeds

The slate is all establishment and almost all elected officials.  I don't know if any of them actually support the candidates they are pledged to (none publicly endorsed prior to the primary as far as I can tell).

Sunday, February 28, 2016

Why not Trump?

Donald Trump is currently leading the race for the Republican presidential nomination. What should conservatives think of this?
THE GOOD Trump has attacked political correctness and skewered some deserving targets, from Jeb Bush to Bill Clinton. He also brought greater prominence to immigration issues and pushed the debate on these issues to the right.
THE ISSUES So where does Trump stand on the issues? With the exceptions of trade and eminent domain, he doesn’t seem to have been consistent on any issue. Most positions have changed over time, and some seem to vary from day to day or even minute to minute.
ABORTION In 1999, Trump said “I’m pro-choice” and refused to support a partial-birth abortion ban, citing his “New York background”. He claims to have become pro-life (with exceptions) a few years ago. He has continued to praise Planned Parenthood for its non-abortion services during the campaign.
GUN RIGHTS Trump once said that “I hate the concept of guns” and supported banning “assault weapons” and waiting periods. During his campaign, he has taken pro-gun positions.
TAXES In 1999, Trump advocated a 6 trillion dollar wealth tax to eliminate the national debt. More recently, he has said the plan was good at the time, but is now impractical. During the campaign, Trump has proposed a tax plan that has mostly been well-received by conservatives.
HEALTH CARE Trump has pledged to “repeal and replace” Obamacare. But replace it with what? Trump has praised socialized medicine in Canada and Scotland in the past. He seems to advocate this for America as well, calling for government to pay for everyone.
RACIAL PREFERENCES One issue where Trump has not taken a politically incorrect position is racial preferences (“affirmative action”). When Antonin Scalia asked a question critical of affirmative action (citing the mismatch theory), Trump criticized Scalia. He went on to declare support for affirmative action.
EMINENT DOMAIN Trump has consistently defended the use of private eminent domain—that is, the government taking someone’s land (with compensation) for a private developer. Trump tried to take the Atlantic City house of elderly widow Vera Coking for a limousine parking lot but lost a court battle. He supports the Kelo Supreme Court case allowing private eminent domain. While this isn’t the most pressing issue (most states have banned private eminent domain) it shows that Trump favors the interests of big business over the rights of average citizens.
IMMIGRATION Trump proposed a great immigration plan, which was apparently written by Senator Jeff Sessions and his staff. However, he has not always advocated for tough immigration policies. In 2012, he opposed Mitt Romney’s support of ‘self-deportation’ (illegals leaving on their own in response to restriction of jobs and benefits), calling it “mean-spirited”, and defended his position in 2015. In 2013, he met with ‘immigrant advocates’ saying that “you’ve convinced me” on the issue. In June 2015, he supported a path to citizenship for illegals. In August 2015, he called for taking in Syrian refugees, before dramatically reversing himself and calling for ending all Muslim immigration.
DONATIONS Trump has donated to a raft of liberal politicians, including Hillary Clinton, Joe Biden, Harry Reid, Chuck Schumer, Ted Kennedy, Jimmy Carter, and many more. Trump excuses this as a business necessity, rather than the product of ideological conviction. Of course, Michigan conservatives have not excused donations to democrats by moderate Republicans like Rick Snyder and Bobby Schostak. At a minimum, Trump’s donations show a willingness to go along to get along, rather than fight a corrupt system.
CHARACTER Trump has been married three times, and had several affairs. He can be gracious to win people over, but will viciously attack those who don’t give him what he wants.
ELECTABILITY Trump has trailed Hillary Clinton in most polls, performing worse against her than Ted Cruz or Marco Rubio. His unfavorable rating is 58% as of this writing, far higher than any candidate who has ever been nominated for president. Liberals are compiling opposition research files on his business dealings, treatment of employees and acquaintances, and controversial statements in past interviews. Barring some game-changing event (such a Clinton indictment or Bloomberg third-party campaign), Trump is likely to lose the general election.
SUMMARY Donald Trump has very little history in the Republican party, much less the conservative movement. He has very recently taken more conservative positions. The question voters must ask is whether there is any reason to believe him. Did he really have a massive political conversion within the past few years, or is he just cynically saying what voters want to hear?

See also:
Is Donald Trump Conservative? Here's the Rundown
Conservative Review on Trump
Club for Growth on Trump