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Governor's office calls special election to replace McCotter

Lieutenant Governor Brian Calley
Brian Calley
Lieutenant Governor Brian Calley

Lieutenant Governor Brian Calley has called a special election to fill the vacancy created by the sudden resignation last week of U.S. Rep.Thaddeus McCotter (R-Livonia). It is the latest twist in a bizarre series of events that began when McCotter failed to make the ballot because of faked petition signatures.

The special election will be held on the same date as the Nov. 8 general election. The lieutenant governor says McCotter resigned too late to avoid calling the special primary a month after the regular primary, which will cost taxpayers $650,000.

“The decision to resign at the date that he chose does result in additional expense to the taxpayers of the state of Michigan," Calley said. "Had that decision happened earlier, we could have coordinated it with the existing primary date and there would have been little or no extra expense.”

The lieutenant governor is in charge while Governor Rick Snyder is on vacation. Calley says the people of McCotter’s district deserve to be represented during Congress’s “lame duck” session, even if it’s just for a few weeks. But he says Michigan law and the U.S. Constitution also leave him no choice but to act to fill the seat.

The winner of the special election will serve the  11th Congressional District, which includes portions of Wayne and Oakland counties, through the end of the year. A separate election will decide who represents the district, which was re-drawn this year, starting in January.

Rick Pluta is Senior Capitol Correspondent for the Michigan Public Radio Network. He has been covering Michigan’s Capitol, government, and politics since 1987.
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