FRIDAY, May 12 — Senate Appropriations Committee Chair Sarah Anthony, every other elected Democratic legislator from the mid-Michigan region and 50 other elected and non-elected leaders came out today in support of U.S. Rep. Elissa Slotkin's bid for the U.S. Senate.
Lansing Mayor Andy Schor, half of Ingham County's countywide elected officials and more than half of the Lansing City Council are on board with the three-term member of Congress succeeding U.S. Sen. Debbie Stabenow after her term ends in 2024.
"I can't think of anyone better to fight for all Michiganders in the U.S. Senate," said Anthony.
Two prominent local Democrats were missing from Slotkin's list, however: Barb Byrum, the Ingham County clerk, and Curtis Hertel Jr., a former state senator from East Lansing. Both are seriously considering running for the Democratic nomination to replace Slotkin in the U.S. House of Representatives from the 7th Congressional District, which includes Ingham County.
"I did not have a conversation with the congresswoman about endorsing her," Byrum said today about the announcement of Slotkin backers. "I announced my support for her when she announced.
"I really think this is a nothing burger story," she said, referring to why she was left off the list. "Of course I support the congresswoman."
Bryum also said it was possible her endorsement was not mentioned in order to prevent a "perception" that Slotkin was endorsing her to run for the Democratic nomination for Slotkin's seat.
Byrum said she still has not decided if she will run, but she added that she had a meeting scheduled today about it.
Hertel said he cannot endorse in his current job as legislative director for the Governor's Office. That leaned toward Byrum's speculation that she was left off intentionally since Slotkin could not also include Hertel and did not want to play favorites.
This afternoon, a Slotkin campaign spokesperson denied that leaving out Byum was an oversight, a slight or that anything else at play.
"There's nothing nefarious here.," Austin Cook said. "There's no calculation. Barb tweeted out the day we announced that she was supporting us, and we were glad to have the support. The list today consisted of people who had not yet made public announcements of their support. That's it."
There are 543 days until the 2024 general election, but Slotkin has nailed down East Lansing Mayor Ron Bacon, Ingham County Sheriff Scott Wrigglesworth and several non-elected leaders like Bishop Samuel Duncan of the Lansing Church of God in Christ and the Rev. Pamelajune Anderson of Space for Grace.
The endorsements are significant in that with only one other Democratic candidate in the field at this point -- Southeast Michigan business executive Nasser Beydoun — Slotkin is already buttoning down support for the nomination. The news also comes the day after Natural Resources Commissioner Leslie Love a former state House member, resigned from the commission to explore a Senate run.
The campaign prepared a three-minute video outlying Slotkin's support. It features Bacon talking about how Slotkin was the first person to call after news of the Michigan State University shooting occurred in February and offered whatever support she could provide.
All of the people endorsing Slotkin are from her current 7th Congressional district and all of those elected to a partisan office, like Ingham County Treasurer Alan Fox or House Appropriations Committee Chair @Witwer.
"She's a person of principle. She acts with integrity. She's pragmatic and looking for solutions," said immigration attorney Amy Maldonado.
No comments on this item Please log in to comment by clicking here