Lawmakers Respond to New Political Maps of the State
Michigan’s political future is defined, at least on paper. The new cards were approved by the Michigan Independent Citizens Redistricting Commission on Tuesday evening.
Even though the most drastic changes have occurred in the state, northern Michigan will see changes almost everywhere and important decisions will be made by current lawmakers.
The cutting board was adamant, whenever asked about it, that the politicians in place were not a factor in the way the maps were drawn. The results proved it.
On the map of the State Senate, one of the most significant changes will be in the size and shape of the district currently held by Senator Curt VanderWall.
One of the problems will be the new 33rd arrondissement. Current Senator Jon Bumstead lives in Newaygo while current Senator Rick Outman lives in Six Lakes, the same district.
Public office holders must live in the district they represent so that they have the decision to move or run against each other in a primary. Neither could be reached for comment on 9 & 10 News.
Looking at the State House map, there are more significant changes and it upsets some of the lawmakers already in office.
“I believe even one of the commissioners said yesterday in context that northern Michigan has been a bit offbeat and I agree,” said Rep. Jack O’Malley, “Just with the drawings of things and it didn’t have to happen but it is and we will have to deal with it.
Not everyone sees a major change, Rep. John Damoose and Rep. Ken Borton will each gain a few counties and lose a few, but will have a clear path for re-election.
“I love Sault Ste. Marie and Chippewa County. I love my whole district, but that was my biggest threat because some cards made me lose that and I was so upset, “said Damoose,” But it doesn’t and I am. am very happy. “
“I think with the communities of interest they’ve done a good job with that and some of the counties they’ve added. Crawford, Roscommon, Missaukee and some from Kalkaska, these are all areas that I know very well, ”said Borton,“ I am very happy to meet people in this new field. “
O’Malley is a little bored because he lives in Lake Ann, now in the 103rd District, where freshman rep John Roth also lives.
Someone will have to move, run against, or withdraw. That is if the lawsuits do not force to modify these cards in the coming weeks.
“If they stay the same, that’s another story, but right now I’m not panicking,” Roth said, “But I can tell you I’m not looking forward to or would I really want to. running against Jack O’Malley in a primary. ”
“We’ve talked about a number of different types of scenarios,” said O’Malley, “And in the next few days we’ll be discussing and coming up with exactly what we want to do.”
One thing for Roth is that he lives about half a mile from the border with the new 104th District, so if he had to move it wouldn’t be far.
“I haven’t made a 100% commitment to anything yet,” Roth said. “I have to talk to my family to make sure they are okay with moving for four years. There is still a lot to say.
As for the rest of the region, there will be new faces everywhere as each of the remaining representatives in northern Michigan is on a limited time basis. 2022 will be an eventful year leading up to election day.