Every seat in the Michigan state house is up for election in 2018, and many seats are open due to term limits. The house has been run by its more conservative wing for the past four years. Continuing this trend will depend on conservatives winning primaries in August. Here are my recommendations for who to support in Republican primaries. Some races are hard evaluate, so additional information from readers is welcome.
Recommended candidates are in bold.
36. Strangely, none of the three major candidates here have an issue page. However, Dr. Karen Potchynok-Lund, wife of conservative former rep Pete Lund, is solely endorsed by Right to Life.
38. Moderate incumbent Kathy Crawford has voted to increase gas taxes, support hollywood subsidies and FoxConn subsidies, against electric choice, against an income tax cut, against constitutional carry, against cutting auto insurance rates, and against reforming civil asset forfeiture. Chase Turner is running on a conservative platform and is endorsed by Pat Colbeck.
39. Assistant prosecutor Marsha Kosmatka is running on a conservative platform and is solely endorsed by Right to Life and Citizens for Traditional Values. Ryan Berman and Kevin Tatulyan also have decent platforms.
40. Lawyer/businessman David Wolkinson has a fairly conservative platform. CPA Paul Taros is a Tea Party activist who may not be the best fit for a moderate district. Mike Banerian and Malissa Bossardet have fairly generic platforms. Joe Zane has made many democrat donations.
41. Oakland County Commissioner Doug Tietz is a good conservative who was campaign manager for the Michigan Civil Rights Initiative in 2006.
43. Independence Township Trustee Jose Aliaga is a solid conservative who has an Aq rating from the NRA, while his opponents both got C from the NRA.
44. Businessman Matt Maddock is a conservative leader in Oakland County. He is solely endorsed by Right to Life.
51. Mike Mueller is the establishment favorite, but his positions are unimpressive. County commissioner Drew Shaprio has a history of run-ins with the police and no issues page on his website. Trump delegate Ian Shetron has a conservative platform.
63. Moderate incumbent David Maturen is pro-abortion, has a D rating from the NRA, and voted for gas tax increases and against income tax cuts. He is being challenged by conservative activist Matt Hall (a third candidate dropped out).
65. Jackson County Commissioner Sarah Lightner is solely endorsed by Right to Life and has an Aq rating from NRA.
71. County Commissioner Christine Barnes seems to be more conservative than businessman Chuck Cascarilla, but the difference isn’t huge.
72. State rep. Steven Johnson has been one of the best conservatives in the house since his election in 2016. He is endorsed by Right to Life, NRA, Pat Colbeck, and Bob Genetski. He is being challenged by moderate Jennifer Antel.
73. Most establishment support has gone to Lynn Afendoulis, cousin of the moderate incumbent. A better choice is Robert Regan, who is endorsed by the NRA, state senator Pat Colbeck, and state reps Dave Agema and Steve Johnson.
77. State rep Tommy Brann has been an average conservative in office. He is being challenged by Daniel Oesch.
78. Niles city councilman David Mann is running on a conservative platform and is solely endorsed by Right to Life and conservative state rep Steve Johnson.
79. The candidate websites don’t show a clear distinction. Pauline Wendzel is endorsed by local conservative activist David Yardley.
81. Kenneth Nicholl and Eric Stocker have raised the most, but have generic platforms. Joel Williams and Gary Eisen have more conservative platforms.
84. There doesn’t seem to be a clear distinction between county commissioner Matthew Bierlein, Phil Green, son of conservative state senator Mike Green, and businessman Dean Smith.
88. Luke Meerman is solely endorsed by Right to Life, as well as by conservative former state rep. Tom Hooker.
90. Ottawa County Treasurer Bradley Slagh has most establishment support and is solely endorsed by Right to Life. Orlando Estrada is a conservative alternative.
91. Greg VanWoerkem, a staffer for Bill Huizenga, has most establishment support and is solely endorsed by Right to Life. However, former county commissioner Alan Jager has a higher NRA rating.
93. County Commissioner Anne Hill is running on a solidly conservative platform.
94. Saginaw Township Treasurer Steven Gerhardt is solely endorsed by Right to Life and is the most conservative candidate.
98. Annette Glenn is the wife of staunch conservative state rep. Gary Glenn. She is solely endorsed by Right to Life and seems to be the only candidate running a serious campaign.
101. Radio host Jack O’Malley seems to be running the most serious campaign. Carolyn Cater is runnning as a more conservative alternative.
102. State rep. Michelle Hoitenga has been one of the best conservatives in the house since her election in 2016. She is being challenged from the left by William Barnett.
107. State rep. Lee Chatfield is a solid conservative who is in line to be the next Republican leader in the house. He faces an unserious primary opponent.
110. Doctor and school board member Kirk Schott is solely endorsed by Right to Life and seems to be running the most serious campaign.