Friday, January 01, 2010

Congressional District 2 (MI-02) - Updated

Updated 5-18-2010 - Listed the candidates that passed the filing deadline.
Updated 8-4-2010 - Primary results

The 2nd Congressional District (MI-02) is opening up for the first time in decades.

Michigan's 2nd District - Congress
Incumbent - Pete Hoekstra (R-Holland) - Not running for re-election - running for Governor.
Candidates:
GOP - Bill Huizenga
Dems - Fred Johnson
Years in office as of 2010 election - 18.
Cook District Numbers - R+7

Barone’s numbers
2008:
McCain - 51%
Obama - 48%
2004:
Bush – 60%
Kerry – 39% 
2000:
Bush 59%
Gore 39%




The 2nd District runs along the Lake Michigan coast. It is anchored by two major cities, Holland and Muskegon. It contains Benzie, Lake, Manistee, Mason, Muskegon, Newaygo, Oceana, Ottawa, and Wexford Counties. It also contains the townships of Alpine, Solon, Sparta, and Tyrone in Kent County, and contains Fillmore, Heath, Laketown, Manlius, Monterey, Overisel, Salem, and Saugatuck Townships, part of Dorr Township, and the cities of Douglas, Fennville Holland, and Saugatuck in Allegan County.

This is historically the most Republican district in Michigan, and in MOST years, solidly republican. The question now is whether the MAJOR blue shift in West Michigan is due to the last three years of Bush and Obama's candidacy, or is it a real allignment in the West side of the state. I don't know. We'll find out more this year. I do have my concerns.

Pete Hoekstra always ran strong here, well ahead of the ticket, even when the GOP had a big year. His worst general election numbers outside of 1992 (63%) were in 2008, and that was still 62%.His best was in 1994 (75%) followed by 2002 which is the current district (70%). The bad news. Hoekstra's not running this year.

I'll be honest. I'm concerned about this district. I think whoever wins the GOP primary needs to be ready for a fight. There are several reasons.

1. The GOP margins in the Dutch areas are dipping.
2. The Lakeshore has a Chicago influence. Advantage Obama. A lot of vacation homes are on the coast, and many of them are from transplants. The GOP numbers by percentage shrunk statewide including the east side, but the west side plummeted much more than the east side. 5-6% drops on the East Side, and often 10% out west.
3. The economy. Always an issue.
4. Muskegon. Muskegon is heavily blue and getting bluer. 
5. Several Bush counties went for Obama.

I'll start with Hoekstra's 2004 and then 2008 election numbers. Hoesktra won every county outside of Muskegon in 2008. I'm not that concerned on Muskegon. It's democrat. Here's 2004.


2004 Election
Hoekstra
Kotos
3rd party
Total
Diff.
GOP%
Dem%
Diff%
Benzie
5,268
3,412
94
       8,774
1856
60.04%
38.89%
21.15%
Lake
2,879
2,010
124
       5,013
869
57.43%
40.10%
17.33%
Manistee
7,432
4,245
195
     11,872
3187
62.60%
35.76%
26.84%
Mason
9,144
4,780
192
     14,116
4364
64.78%
33.86%
30.92%
Muskegon
42,350
32,342
995
     75,687
10008
55.95%
42.73%
13.22%
Newaygo
15,050
6,608
606
     22,264
8442
67.60%
29.68%
37.92%
Oceana
7,579
3,777
152
     11,508
3802
65.86%
32.82%
33.04%
Ottawa
99,422
24,303
2152
   125,877
75119
78.98%
19.31%
59.68%
Wexford
10,092
4,163
315
     14,570
5929
69.27%
28.57%
40.69%
Kent Co:








Alpine Twp
4,009
1,969
158
       6,136
2040
65.34%
32.09%
33.25%
Solon Twp (2)
1,230
454
49
       1,733
776
70.98%
26.20%
44.78%
Sparta Twp
2,853
1,052
105
       4,010
1801
71.15%
26.23%
44.91%
Tyrone Twp
1,464
503
39
       2,006
961
72.98%
25.07%
47.91%
Allegan Co:








Dorr Twp (1)
474
130
16
         620
344
76.45%
20.97%
55.48%
Dorr Twp (2)
929
252
27
       1,208
677
76.90%
20.86%
56.04%
City of Douglas
0
0
0
            -  
0
#DIV/0!
#DIV/0!
#DIV/0!
City of Fennville
265
146
11
         422
119
62.80%
34.60%
28.20%
Heath Twp
1326
254
34
       1,614
1072
82.16%
15.74%
66.42%
City of Holland
2713
640
60
       3,413
2073
79.49%
18.75%
60.74%
Laketown Twp
2,949
664
52
       3,665
2285
80.46%
18.12%
62.35%
Manlius Twp
1,172
277
34
       1,483
895
79.03%
18.68%
60.35%
Monterey Twp
682
254
29
         965
428
70.67%
26.32%
44.35%
Overisel Twp
1,420
96
18
       1,534
1324
92.57%
6.26%
86.31%
Salem Twp
1,498
341
37
       1,876
1157
79.85%
18.18%
61.67%
City of Saugatuck
383
303
16
         702
80
54.56%
43.16%
11.40%
Saugatuck Twp
1,303
909
46
       2,258
394
57.71%
40.26%
17.45%









Total
223,886
93,884
5556
   323,326
130002
69.24%
29.04%
40.21%


This was one of his better showings. Overall - he won everywhere except the following areas. Gilmore Twp in Benzie County. It's a small and very democrat area. Webber and Yates Twps in Lake County. Also democrat strongholds. Muskegon and Muskegon Heights in Muskegon County. Merrill Twp in Newaygo County. That's it. That's pretty good, and why he won with 69% in 2004. 2008 is slightly different, but still good compared to McCain. It's still ahead of Bush's numbers in this district. I think part of the drop is also the banks bailout. Look at the 3rd party number increases as well.


2008 Election
Hoekstra
Johnson
3rd party
Total
Diff.
GOP%
Dem%
Diff%
Benzie
5,503
4,052
301
       9,856
1451
55.83%
41.11%
14.72%
Lake
2,745
2,217
163
       5,125
528
53.56%
43.26%
10.30%
Manistee
7,287
4,999
413
     12,699
2288
57.38%
39.37%
18.02%
Mason
9,295
5,149
345
     14,789
4146
62.85%
34.82%
28.03%
Muskegon
38,098
41,426
2033
     81,557
-3328
46.71%
50.79%
-4.08%
Newaygo
13,884
7,499
1091
     22,474
6385
61.78%
33.37%
28.41%
Oceana
7,511
4,313
383
     12,207
3198
61.53%
35.33%
26.20%
Ottawa
95,600
34,344
3291
   133,235
61256
71.75%
25.78%
45.98%
Wexford
9,588
4,899
671
     15,158
4689
63.25%
32.32%
30.93%
Kent Co:








Alpine Twp
3,620
2,352
197
       6,169
1268
58.68%
38.13%
20.55%
Solon Twp (2)
1,225
555
69
       1,849
670
66.25%
30.02%
36.24%
Sparta Twp
2,641
1,237
135
       4,013
1404
65.81%
30.82%
34.99%
Tyrone Twp
1,398
623
65
       2,086
775
67.02%
29.87%
37.15%
Allegan Co:








Dorr Twp (1)
455
164
16
         635
291
71.65%
25.83%
45.83%
Dorr Twp (2)
979
330
43
       1,352
649
72.41%
24.41%
48.00%
City of Douglas
322
373
17
         712
-51
45.22%
52.39%
-7.16%
City of Fennville
234
187
11
         432
47
54.17%
43.29%
10.88%
Heath Twp
1311
365
51
       1,727
946
75.91%
21.13%
54.78%
City of Holland
2448
986
40
       3,474
1462
70.47%
28.38%
42.08%
Laketown Twp
2,605
942
70
       3,617
1663
72.02%
26.04%
45.98%
Manlius Twp
1,135
376
34
       1,545
759
73.46%
24.34%
49.13%
Monterey Twp
680
305
45
       1,030
375
66.02%
29.61%
36.41%
Overisel Twp
1,421
164
42
       1,627
1257
87.34%
10.08%
77.26%
Salem Twp
1,638
412
73
       2,123
1226
77.15%
19.41%
57.75%
City of Saugatuck
300
308
14
         622
-8
48.23%
49.52%
-1.29%
Saugatuck Twp
968
718
54
       1,740
250
55.63%
41.26%
14.37%









Total
212,891
119,295
9667
   341,853
93596
62.28%
34.90%
27.38%


Obama is part of the difference here with Muskegon County, as well as Douglas and Saugatuck in Allegan County. In the former, there is a large minority population. In the latter, the arts and gays crowd. Hoekstra still did well and won most places. He only lost Gilmore and Platte Twps in Benzie County. Platte Twp went for Bush in 04. In Lake County, Pleasant Plains, Webber, and Yates went for Johnson. Those are dem strongholds. Hoekstra still swept Manistee and Mason counties, which went for Obama. Muskegon was rougher. Hoekstra lost the county, which is a stronghold for the democrats. Egelston Twp and Muskegon Twp flipped. The cities of Muskegon and Muskegon Heights stayed blue. That's all that was needed to flip the county. Merrill Twp also stayed blue. The rest did not change, but I think the Hoekstra numbers masks the 04 to 08 change here.

Here's Bush's 04 numbers.

2004 Election
Bush
Kerry
3rd party
Total
Diff.
GOP%
Dem%
Diff%
Benzie
5,284
4,383
112
       9,779
901
54.03%
44.82%
9.21%
Lake
2,503
2,675
68
       5,246
-172
47.71%
50.99%
-3.28%
Manistee
6,295
6,272
173
     12,740
23
49.41%
49.23%
0.18%
Mason
8,124
6,333
345
     14,802
1791
54.88%
42.78%
12.10%
Muskegon
35,302
44,282
594
     80,178
-8980
44.03%
55.23%
-11.20%
Newaygo
13,608
9,057
208
     22,873
4551
59.49%
39.60%
19.90%
Oceana
6,677
5,441
179
     12,297
1236
54.30%
44.25%
10.05%
Ottawa
92,048
35,552
1043
   128,643
56496
71.55%
27.64%
43.92%
Wexford
8,966
6,034
160
     15,160
2932
59.14%
39.80%
19.34%
Kent Co:








Alpine Twp
3,722
2,658
66
       6,446
1064
57.74%
41.23%
16.51%
Solon Twp (2)
1,175
608
14
       1,797
567
65.39%
33.83%
31.55%
Sparta Twp
2,686
1,488
61
       4,235
1198
63.42%
35.14%
28.29%
Tyrone Twp
1,384
654
20
       2,058
730
67.25%
31.78%
35.47%
Allegan Co:








Dorr Twp (1)
446
185
7
         638
261
69.91%
29.00%
40.91%
Dorr Twp (2)
887
350
14
       1,251
537
70.90%
27.98%
42.93%
City of Douglas
0
0
0
            -  
0
#DIV/0!
#DIV/0!
#DIV/0!
City of Fennville
235
201
4
         440
34
53.41%
45.68%
7.73%
Heath Twp
1267
355
12
       1,634
912
77.54%
21.73%
55.81%
City of Holland
2479
941
32
       3,452
1538
71.81%
27.26%
44.55%
Laketown Twp
2,711
961
26
       3,698
1750
73.31%
25.99%
47.32%
Manlius Twp
1,091
412
12
       1,515
679
72.01%
27.19%
44.82%
Monterey Twp
628
360
10
         998
268
62.93%
36.07%
26.85%
Overisel Twp
1,389
163
4
       1,556
1226
89.27%
10.48%
78.79%
Salem Twp
1,450
457
11
       1,918
993
75.60%
23.83%
51.77%
City of Saugatuck
311
389
10
         710
-78
43.80%
54.79%
-10.99%
Saugatuck Twp
1,122
1,145
35
       2,302
-23
48.74%
49.74%
-1.00%









Total
201,790
131,356
3220
   336,366
70434
59.99%
39.05%
20.94%


Those are pretty good numbers. Manistee County went for Gore 00 and flipped. The rest of the blue zones in 2000 (Lake, Muskegon) were blue in 2004 on a countywide basis. In 04, the blue areas were as follows.
Benzie County - City of Frankfort and Gilmore Twp.
Lake County - Eden Twp, Newkirk Twp, Pleasant Plains Twp, Webber Twp, and Yates Twp.
Manistee County - Dickson Twp, Filer Twp, City of Manistee, Manistee Twp, Norman Twp, Springdale Twp, and Stronach Twp
Mason County - Free Soil Twp, Grant Twp, and Sheridan Twp
Muskegon County - Cedar Creek Twp, Dalton Twp, Egelston Twp, City of Montague, City of Muskegon (by 6134), City of Muskegon Heights (by 3600), Muskegon Twp, City of Roosevelt Park, Sullivan Twp, and the City of Whitehall.
Newaygo County - Big Prarie Twp, Denver Twp, Lilley Twp, Merrill Twp, and Troy Twp
Oceana County - Colfax Twp, Crystal Twp, Ferry Twp, Leavitt Twp, Newfield Twp, and Otto Twp.

2008 was a different story. It was a 3pt "win" for the GOP, which I consider about a 10pt loss.
2008 Election
McCain
Obama
3rd party
Total
Diff.
GOP%
Dem%
Diff%
Benzie
4,687
5,451
171
     10,309
-764
45.47%
52.88%
-7.41%
Lake
2,269
2,919
102
       5,290
-650
42.89%
55.18%
-12.29%
Manistee
5,510
7,235
254
     12,999
-1725
42.39%
55.66%
-13.27%
Mason
7,147
7,817
259
     15,223
-670
46.95%
51.35%
-4.40%
Muskegon
29,145
53,821
1305
     84,271
-24676
34.58%
63.87%
-29.28%
Newaygo
11,862
10,790
453
     23,105
1072
51.34%
46.70%
4.64%
Oceana
5,860
6,405
244
     12,509
-545
46.85%
51.20%
-4.36%
Ottawa
83,330
50,828
2110
   136,268
32502
61.15%
37.30%
23.85%
Wexford
8,044
7,379
281
     15,704
665
51.22%
46.99%
4.23%
Kent Co:








Alpine Twp
3,110
3,229
113
       6,452
-119
48.20%
50.05%
-1.84%
Solon Twp (2)
1,075
794
40
       1,909
281
56.31%
41.59%
14.72%
Sparta Twp
2,277
1,814
91
       4,182
463
54.45%
43.38%
11.07%
Tyrone Twp
1,206
903
30
       2,139
303
56.38%
42.22%
14.17%
Allegan Co:








Dorr Twp (1)
416
230
10
         656
186
63.41%
35.06%
28.35%
Dorr Twp (2)
902
469
28
       1,399
433
64.47%
33.52%
30.95%
City of Douglas
246
472
7
         725
-226
33.93%
65.10%
-31.17%
City of Fennville
163
279
6
         448
-116
36.38%
62.28%
-25.89%
Heath Twp
1204
506
38
       1,748
698
68.88%
28.95%
39.93%
City of Holland
2093
1,391
40
       3,524
702
59.39%
39.47%
19.92%
Laketown Twp
2,318
1,285
53
       3,656
1033
63.40%
35.15%
28.25%
Manlius Twp
991
569
20
       1,580
422
62.72%
36.01%
26.71%
Monterey Twp
597
450
20
       1,067
147
55.95%
42.17%
13.78%
Overisel Twp
1,334
274
32
       1,640
1060
81.34%
16.71%
64.63%
Salem Twp
1,509
630
48
       2,187
879
69.00%
28.81%
40.19%
City of Saugatuck
229
396
13
         638
-167
35.89%
62.07%
-26.18%
Saugatuck Twp
779
963
27
       1,769
-184
44.04%
54.44%
-10.40%









Total
178,303
167,299
5795
   351,397
11004
50.74%
47.61%
3.13%

This is why I'm keeping an eye on this seat for 2010. While it's ours to lose, it's too close to comfort for an open seat without Pete Hoekstra running. Instead of blue zones as in 2004, counties were blue. Even Ottawa County had blue zones. The City of Grand Haven went blue, as did of all places, Ottawa's portion of Holland.

Breaking it down further. Comparing 2004 and 2008.
2004:
Ottawa County - Bush 71.55%, Kerry 27.64% - 128,643 votes. 56,496 vote spread.
North County Portion - Bush 55.39%, 43.27% - 92,897 votes.  11,262 vote spread.
Allegan County Portion - Bush 69.69%, Kerry 29.43%, 20,112 votes. 8097 vote spread.
Kent County portion - Bush 61.69%, Kerry 37.20% - 14,536 votes. - 3559 vote spread
Muskegon County - Kerry 55.23%, Bush 44.03% - 80,178 votes. -8980 vote spread
Total - Bush 59.99%, Kerry 39.05% - 336,366 votes. 70,434 vote spread

Obama needed to make up 70,434 votes to take the district. He made up almost 60,000.
2008:
Ottawa County - McCain 61.15%, Obama 37.30% -136,269 votes, 32502 vote spread (cut by 24,000 votes)
North County Portion - Obama 50.45%, McCain 47.70% - 95,139 votes. -2617 vote spread (flip of almost 14,000 votes)
Allegan County Portion - McCain 60.75%, Obama 37.62% - 21037 votes, 4867 vote spread. (cut by about 3200)
Kent County Portion - McCain 52.23%, Obama 45.91% - 14,682 votes, 928 vote spread. (cut by about 2600)
Muskegon County - Obama 63.87%, McCain 34.58% - 84,271 votes. -24678 votes. (Increased by about 15000)

Now do you see the concern here with an open seat. The big base is Ottawa County, still the most Republican County in the state. Three of the candidates are from Ottawa County (Huizenga, Kuipers, and Riemersma). Bill Cooper is from Fruitport in Muskegon County. The three from Ottawa County all have strong name recognition (not sure about Cooper one way or the other). Kuipers is a State Senator. Huizenga was a state rep until 2008. Riemersma has never held elected office, but played TE for the Buffalo Bills, Pittsburgh Steelers, and Michigan Wolverines. Most football fans know who he is. The only democrat announced if Fred Johnson.

It'll be interesting who gets past the primary, and who runs for the democrats. Fred Johnson doesn't scare me. Julie Dennis doesn't scare me. She lost a district she should have won. Mary Valentine is running for state senate instead, and will be a formidable candidate there. Here's some of the farm club for the future.

State Senate 35 - Covers Benzie, Clare, Kalkaska, Lake, Leelanau, Manistee, Mecosta, Missaukee, Osceola, Roscommon, and Wexford Counties. Benzie, Lake, Manistee, and Wexford counties are in the district. Michelle McManus, from Leelanau County, is termed out as State Senator, and running for Secretary of State. This is an open seat.


St Senate 35th
GOP
Dem






06 - McManus/Schippers
62199
40836
2146
   105,181
21363
59.14%
38.82%
20.31%
02 - McManus/Dahlberg
51405
30942
2076
     84,423
20463
60.89%
36.65%
24.24%

St. Senate 34th - Covers Mason, Muskegon, Newaygo, and Oceana Counties. This is also an open seat and the dems think they have a very good shot at this. Obama won three of the counties, and Muskegon is a base county. Gerald Van Woerkom is termed out and won two close races here by narrowing his losses in Muskegon and running well in the outcounties.


St Senate 34th
GOP
Dem






06 - VanWoerkom/Dennis
52,233
50,870

   103,103
1363
50.66%
49.34%
1.32%
02 - VanWoerkom/Shrauger
42,180
41,233
1882
     85,295
947
49.45%
48.34%
1.11%

St Senate 30th - Covers Ottawa County, and in Kent County the City of Grandville, Sparta Township. All except Grandville is in the 2nd district. Wayne Kuipers is termed out and running for Hoekstra's seat.


St Senate 30th
GOP
Dem






06 - Kuipers/VanderStoep
83,242
31,328
2223
   116,793
51914
71.27%
26.82%
44.45%
02 - Kuipers/O'Brien
71,160
21,701
1637
     94,498
49459
75.30%
22.96%
52.34%

St Senate 28th - Covers Ada Twp, Algoma Twp, Alpine Twp, Bowne Twp, Byron Twp, Caledonia Twp, Cannon Twp, City of Cedar Springs, Courtland Twp, City of East Grand Rapids, Gaines Twp, Grand Rapids twp, Nelson Twp, Oakfield Twp, Plainfield Twp, City of Rockford, Solon Twp,  Spencer Twp, Tyrone Twp, City of Walker, and City of Wyoming. Alpine Twp, part of Solon Twp, and Tyrone Twp is in the district.


St Senate 28th
GOP
Dem






06 - Jansen/Abbassee
78,234
42,227
2646
   123,107
36007
63.55%
34.30%
29.25%
02 - Sikkema/Berry
72,993
25,425
1373
     99,791
47568
73.15%
25.48%
47.67%

State Senate 24th - Covers Allegan, Barry, and Eaton Counties. Allegan is in the 2nd district. It's a solid GOP district, although Eaton County is becoming more and more Lansing influenced.


St Senate 24th GOP  Dem 3rd Party Total Diff. GOP% Dem% Diff%
06 - Birkholz/Royston 64,737 46,480
   111,217 18257 58.21% 41.79% 16.42%
02 - Birkholz/Birdson 57,906 32,170
     90,076 25736 64.29% 35.71% 28.57%


State Rep 102nd - Covers Mecosta, Osceola, and Wexford Counties. Wexford is in the 2nd district.

St Rep 102nd
GOP
Dem
3rd Party
Total
Diff.
GOP%
Dem%
Diff%
08 - Booher/Heffron
26,212
16,002
1241
     43,455
10210
60.32%
36.82%
23.50%
06 - Booher/Heffron
21,637
13,260

     34,897
8377
62.00%
38.00%
24.00%
04 - Booher/Challender
26,000
14,761

     40,761
11239
63.79%
36.21%
27.57%
02 - Johnson/Challender
17,815
8,805

     26,620
9010
66.92%
33.08%
33.85%


State Rep 101st - Covers Benzie, Leelanau, Manistee, and Mason counties. This seat flipped in 2008 after Republican David Palsok was termed out. there was a tough primary fight, and Dan Scripps, the democrat worked his ass off in this district. He was aided by Obama winning this district, but a lot of this I think he did on his own. He's probably the opponent I'd least like to see run for the 2nd, or for the McManus State Senate seat. Scripps won Leelanau County in 2006 against Palsrok and won all counties in 2008.


St Rep 101st
GOP
Dem
3rd Party
Total
Diff.
GOP%
Dem%
Diff%
08 - Franz/Scripps
20,748
30,984

     51,732
-10236
40.11%
59.89%
-19.79%
06 - Palsrok/Scripps
21,776
20,132

     41,908
1644
51.96%
48.04%
3.92%
04 - Palsrok/Gebhard
26,990
21,457

     48,447
5533
55.71%
44.29%
11.42%
02 - Palsrok/Krieger
18,684
15,754

     34,438
2930
54.25%
45.75%
8.51%


St Rep 100 - Covers Lake, Newaygo, and Oceana Counties. This district leans Republican and is opened up with Goeff Hansen term limited. Lake county is democrat, and Oceana is competitive. Newaygo is still strongly Republican and is the most populated part of the district.


St Rep 100th
GOP
Dem
3rd Party
Total
Diff.
GOP%
Dem%
Diff%
08 - Hansen/Richards
21,940
16,343
1021
     39,304
5597
55.82%
41.58%
14.24%
06 - Hansen/Richards
19,139
13,590

     32,729
5549
58.48%
41.52%
16.95%
04 - Hansen/Griffin
23,270
14,863

     38,133
8407
61.02%
38.98%
22.05%
02 - Pumford/Sterling
16,959
9,279

     26,238
7680
64.64%
35.36%
29.27%


St Rep 92 - Covers Fruitland Twp, Laketon Twp, the City of Muskegon, the City of Muskegon Heights, Muskegon Twp, and the city of North Muskegon. It is the most democrat part of Muskegon County and the 2nd district. It is an open seat with Doug Bennett termed out.


St Rep 92nd
GOP
Dem
3rd Party
Total
Diff.
GOP%
Dem%
Diff%
08 - McCormick/Bennett
9,615
26,384

     35,999
-16769
26.71%
73.29%
-46.58%
06 - Harris-Barnell/Bennett
7,615
18,333

     25,948
-10718
29.35%
70.65%
-41.31%
04 - Cutler/Bennett
11,804
22,498

     34,302
-10694
34.41%
65.59%
-31.18%
02 - Boughton/Dennis
7,471
15,339

     22,810
-7868
32.75%
67.25%
-34.49%


St Rep 91 - Covers Blue Lake Twp, Casnovia Twp, Cedar Creek Twp, Dalton Twp, Egelston Twp, Fruitport Twp, Holton Twp, City of Montague, Montague Twp, Moorland Twp, City of Norton Shores, Raveena Twp, City of Roosevelt Park, Sullivan Twp, White River Twp, Whitehall Twp, the City of Whitehall in Muskegon County, and Chester Twp in  Ottawa County. It is a competitive district that has gone for David Farhat for the GOP and Mary Valentine for the Dems. It is opening up as Valentine is running for State Senate.


St Rep 91st
GOP
Dem
3rd Party
Total
Diff.
GOP%
Dem%
Diff%
08 - Hughes/Valentine
21,035
24,445

     45,480
-3410
46.25%
53.75%
-7.50%
06 - Farhat/Valentine
15,745
19,945

     35,690
-4200
44.12%
55.88%
-11.77%
04 - Farhat/Frye
22,327
20,587

     42,914
1740
52.03%
47.97%
4.05%
02 - Farhat/Frye
14,892
14,450

     29,342
442
50.75%
49.25%
1.51%


St Rep 90 - Covers Blendon Twp, City of Holland, Holland Twp, City of Hudsonville, Jamestown Twp, City of Zeeland, and Zeeland Twp in Ottawa County. This is one of the most republican districts in the country with Jamestown Twp, Zeeland and Hudsonville. Holland usually is solid GOP, although Obama won the Ottawa portion.


St Rep 90th GOP  Dem 3rd Party Total Diff. GOP% Dem% Diff%
08 - Haveman/Stauffer 31,223 12,011
     43,234 19212 72.22% 27.78% 44.44%
06 - Huizenga/Stauffer 27,350 7,593
     34,943 19757 78.27% 21.73% 56.54%
04 - Huizenga/Bartlett 32,383 7,607 1233      41,223 24776 78.56% 18.45% 60.10%
02 - Huizenga/Breese 22,940 5,168
     28,108 17772 81.61% 18.39% 63.23%

St Rep 88 - Most of Allegan County (and all of Allegan in the 2nd)


St Rep 88th GOP  Dem 3rd Party Total Diff. GOP% Dem% Diff%
08 - Genetski/Clark 29,064 18,119
     47,183 10945 61.60% 38.40% 23.20%
06 - Sheen/Weichman 24,831 14,484 1043      40,358 10347 61.53% 35.89% 25.64%
04 - Sheen/Fleser 31,300 15,282
     46,582 16018 67.19% 32.81% 34.39%
02 - Sheen/Fleser 20,727 9,497
     30,224 11230 68.58% 31.42% 37.16%


St Rep 74 -Covers Alpine Twp and the City of Grandville in Kent County and the City of Coopersville, Crokckery Twp, Georgetown Twp, Polkton Twp, Tallmadge Twp, and Wright Twp in Ottawa County. All except Grandville is in the 2nd District.


St Rep 74th GOP  Dem 3rd Party Total Diff. GOP% Dem% Diff%
08 - Agema/Chase 36,207 13,421 1911      51,539 22786 70.25% 26.04% 44.21%
06 - Agema/Kauffman 30,495 12,109 880      43,484 18386 70.13% 27.85% 42.28%
04 - VanRegenmorter/Sloboda 38,380 12,009 719      51,108 26371 75.10% 23.50% 51.60%
02 - VanRegenmorter/Barringer 28,234 7,492 407      36,133 20742 78.14% 20.73% 57.40%


St Rep 73 - Covers Algoma Twp, Cannon Twp, City of Cedar Springs, Courtland Twp, Nelson Twp, Oakfield Twp, Plainfield Twp, City of Rockford, Solon Twp, Sparty Twp, Spencer Twp, and Tyrone Twp in Kent County. It's a district with strong GOP leanings, although the dems were high on Bruce Hawley in 08 looking for an upset. Tom Pearce was held to 59% and it opens up in 2010. This can be a darkhorse. Hawley took Tyrone Twp (which went for McCain) and Cedar Springs, and made it close in Sparta. Considering Pearce's old numbers, I don't think it was Pearce.


St Rep 73rd GOP  Dem 3rd Party Total Diff. GOP% Dem% Diff%
08 - Pearce/Hawley 31,757 20,624 1516      53,897 11133 58.92% 38.27% 20.66%
06 - Pearce/Marckini 28,636 14,714 1010      44,360 13922 64.55% 33.17% 31.38%
04 - Pearce/Clowney 35,035 15,277 1179      51,491 19758 68.04% 29.67% 38.37%
02 - Hart/Clowney 24,370 9,845 628      34,843 14525 69.94% 28.26% 41.69%


The democrats have to run the table and hope for a 2008 year with extra local strength to win.While I am concerned, we are favored to keep the seat. To make sure of that, the Republicans here need to remember the following.

1. We can't sit on our butts. That means the candidates after the primary and activists taking the race for granted. If this happens, the dems have a chance to beat the spread against them in North Allegan and Ottawa Counties. Be prepared for a fight. If the GOP outworks the dems, we win.

2. Don't ignore the North. Obama narrowly took Benzie, Mason, and Oceana Counties. He won Manistee and Lake County with about 55%. McCain underperformed in Newaygo and Wexford counties with weak wins there. Those are low voting counties, but important. If the dems win those areas they won by big margins, it gets interesting. Combined, the North Counties are slightly over 25% of the vote.

3. Stop the bleeding in Muskegon County. Obama got over 63% here and won by almost 25,000 votes. Kerry won it by under 9,000. With a 8,000 spread, this district is not competitive. With 25,000 spread, it is, as McCain's Ottawa spread was 33,000. On a similar note to keep MI-03 (and part of MI-02), stop the bleeding in Kent county as well. McCain lost Alpine Township. That's bad. That's real bad.Muskegon County is about 25% of the vote. That puts the Obama voting portion to be about 1/2 the district.

4. Remember the base. Ottawa and Northern Allegan county. That provided the spread for McCain in the district. Worst case scenario is a big Muskegon turnout and a weak Ottawa County turnout. Ottawa County is about 40% of the vote.

This will be one to watch. I always think the GOP needs to be prepared for fights in all districts whether there will be one or not.  There are two or three names I can see giving the GOP a headache here, and we have the big primary with Huizenga, Riemersma, Kuipers, and Cooper that can be real good or real bad. I think it's ours to lose, but we can't let this happen.

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