Hang on to your political hats: Just days after Michigan’s current crop of legislators took the oath of office, voters in Livingston County’s 47th state House District today have not one, but two Republican candidates running for the seat currently held by state Rep. Hank Vaupel, R-Handy Township, who is term-limited.
One of those candidates is County Commissioner Bob Bezotte, who lives in Marion Township and is also Livingston County’s former sheriff. Bezotte announced his intention to run for Vaupel’s state House seat earlier this week.
The other is Mike Detmer, who lives in the City of Howell. Detmer announced that he has filed his paperwork to run in the Aug. 4, 2020, primary.
Even though it seems super early to start thinking about 2020 here in Livingston County, the early political maneuvering comes on the heels of the blue wave that swept over large swaths of Michigan, except for Livingston County. So it’s not surprising that the two candidates running so far are Republicans who will face off in the Aug. 4, 2020, primary.
Detmer, with 15 years in the automotive industry, 10 years in the lending industry, and is a licensed Realtor, said that he’s not a politician, which is precisely why voters should elect him.
“My experience is the same as most of the voters in my district,” Detmer said in a release. “You get up, work hard, and do what you need to do to take care of your family. The vast majority of the people I know in Livingston County don’t have time for excuses and are fed up with ineffective career politicians. That’s why I’m running.”
We’re waiting to see if any candidates emerge from Fowlerville, which has basically owned the seat in that area for years, including Fred Dillingham, Sue Munsell, Joe Hune (the first to represent the 47th district as we know it), Cindy Denby, and Hank Vaupel, all Republicans. Of course, there was a spell when Paul DeWeese and Dan Gustafson, both Lansing-area Republicans, represented the district, too.
So why start so early?
Bezotte said in an interview with WHMI that consultants advised him that the earlier he gets into the race, the better.
“It gives time for people to look at your issues and what you represent and stand for. It gives them time to make a decision on whether they want to vote for and support you. It’s quite a bit more money to run for state rep, so it gives me time to raise money and have some fundraisers.”
The 47th House District, which includes the townships of Cohoctah, Conway, Deerfield, Handy, Hartland, Howell, Iosco, Marion, Oceola, Tyrone and Unadilla, plus the city of Howell and the village of Fowlerville.