The Chamber of Commerce took it on the chin in Tuesday’s Lansing elections.
Three out of four Chamber candidates
lost. Its biggest target, Derrick Quinney, won reelection despite a
wave of fliers sent by a chamber political front group and anonymous
robocalls that most observers assume were coming from the chamber as
In the 1st Ward, chamber-backed
candidate Lynne Martinez lost a squeaker to Jody Washington, who like
Quinney has the overwhelming support of the unions.
Mayor Virg Bernero had a mixed night:
His administration won two ballot proposals: a 4-mill property tax
increase for police, fire and local roads, and the right to sell 12.68
acres of the defunct Red Cedar Golf Course to developers.
But two candidates he’d hoped for on the
Council lost: Martinez and Rory Neuner in the At-Large race. The
chamber also backed both of them, as it did Tom Stewart, who came in
fourth in the At-Large contest.
Carol Wood, another incumbent with
strong union support, won re-election easily. But the unions lost in
the 3rd Ward, where they backed Jason Wilkes against incumbent A’Lynne
Robinson, the chamber’s sole winner.
In the Lansing School Board races,
incumbent Nicole Armbruster led the contest for three seats, followed
by Peter Spadafore and Rachel Lewis.
City Pulse writers Andy Balaskovitz and Kyle Melinn made the rounds of campaign parties. Here are their reports: