Secretary of State Terri Lynn Land is not going to run for the Congressional seat being vacated by U.S. Rep. Vern Ehlers, a spokesman said today. "Right now, she's focused on being part of Mike Bouchard's team for governor," spokesperson Matt Golden said.
Land, a Kent County Republican, who is term-limited as Secretary of State, committed last fall to being Oakland County Sheriff's gubernatorial running mate.
Also according to the Western Right blog, Jerry Zandstra is not running either. State Rep Dave Agema endorsed his colleague Amash.
Three names I keep hearing are Ken Sikkema, Mark Jansen, and Bill Hardiman. Hardiman got a LOT of establishment support when he ran for State Senate in 2002, but will that transfer to Congress.since a lot of people have their eye on this spot.
Interestingly, there's already a poll from John Yob. Thanks to John for releasing this. From Grand Rapids Press
GOP strategist John Yob did a quick telephone poll of 1,230 likely GOP primary voters Tuesday evening when it became apparent U.S. Rep. Vern Ehlers would resign his seat. Here's what his "snapshot" of the "starting gate" showed: Possible candidate: (Voters) Percentage
Bill Hardiman: (229) 19%
Ken Sikkema: (163) 13%
Terri Lynn Land: (151) 12%
Dave Hildenbrand: (129) 10%
Mark Jansen: (90) 8%
Justin Amash: (81) 7%
Brian Calley: (67) 5%
Kevin Green: (33) 3%
Jerry Zandstra: (27) 2%
Undecided: (252) 20%
Terri Land and Jerry Zandstra can be taken off the list. Dave Hildenbrand has announced for Hardiman's old State Senate seat, the 29th. Dave's a sharp guy, going back to his days with Posthumus. He's got a tough district, but if anyone can win there, he can. Does he switch races by finishing fourth in Yob's poll? I think it depends on who jumps in.
Interestingly, nobody from Ionia County was in the poll. I'd watch for geography to factor in this race. Ionia and Barry Counties, Grand Rapids itself. Eastern burbs (Kentwood, Lowell), Western Burbs (Grandville, Wyoming, Walker), and the Northern and Southern more rural areas. I'll almost bet money that the democrat running will be from Grand Rapids itself.
It'll be interesting to watch.