April 29 2013 12:00 AM

Senate Democratic Leader believes former Congressman Mark Schauer will be the party’s nominee for governor

Gretchen Whitmer speaking to East Lansing Rotary Club today. Below: Mark Schauer. Courtesy photos.

Monday, April 29 — State Senate Democratic Leader Gretchen Whitmer predicted today that former Congressman Mark Schauer will be the Democrats’ candidate for governor in 2014.

Speaking to East Lansing Rotary Club, Whitmer said she expected Schauer — her predecessor as Senate Democratic Leader — to run unopposed in the August 2014 primary election. Schauer served one term in Congress before being defeated for reelection in 2010 by Tim Walberg.

Whitmer doesn’t see another potential candidate capable of effectively challenging Schauer in a primary. While he is rumored to be the strongest Democratic candidate, Schauer has not officially committed to the race.Mark Schauer

Whitmer ruled herself out of the gubernatorial race several weeks ago, citing the needs of her family. She told Rotarians Monday that she realized her two pre-teen daughters would be living with her for only eight to 10 more years. She is unwilling to sacrifice time away from her family for the 15-hour days of a gubernatorial race, much of it raising $20 million or more for the campaign.

Whitmer said she really doesn’t know what she will do when she is term-limited out the Legislature at the end of 2014, but she will continue to work.

She has not ruled out running for attorney general, but she said she may well end up working in the private sector.