Current Rep - Margaret O'Brien (R-Portage)
GOP - Margaret O'Brien (R-Portage)
Dem - Michael Martin (D-Portage)
Update 5-26-2010 - I don't know anything about Martin. I'm keeping an eye on this although it's been "good enough to lose" for the dems.
Old District (61th)
Margaret O'Brien - 21,919
Thomas Batten - 13,671
This district is close on paper, but has been in the "good enough to lose" category for the democrats, much like the Alpena and West Branch seats were until recently. Jack Hoogendyk held this seat for three terms followed by Larry DeShazor's narrow win and now Margaret O'Brien who won easily.
The old district covered Alamo, part of Kalamazoo Twp, Oshtemo Twp, Parchment, Portage, Prairie Ronde Twp, and Texas Twp. The new district drops Kalamazoo Twp, Parchment, and Alamo Twp and adds Schoolcraft Twp. Alamo Twp went for McCain and Bush, Kalamazoo Twp went dem twice. Parchment went for Bush and Obama. Kalamazoo Twp is the biggest part that was dropped, so slight GOP advantage, although losing Alamo Twp hurt. Adding Schoolcraft Twp helped some.
On paper, this is a bit of a swing district. Off paper, it's elected Jack Hoogendyk three times. Jack's quite conservative, and outspokenly so. Oshtemo Twp leans democrat with WMU, but O'Brien won it. Portage is close at the top of the ticket, but is more GOP downticket. Portage is about 1/2 of the district. Texas Twp is the main GOP base. This is a district to keep an eye on as it's no stranger to tough elections, but it hasn't flipped even in two rough years (06/08).
|Prairie Ronde Twp||770||538||1308||232||58.87%||41.13%||17.74%|
|Prairie Ronde Twp||848||456||1304||392||65.03%||34.97%||30.06%|
|Last State House||GOP||DEM||Total||Diff||GOP||DEM||Diff|
|Prairie Ronde Twp||661||274||935||387||70.70%||29.30%||41.39%|