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Daughter of deceased State Representative finishes her mother’s term

House Democrats
Lauren Plawecki

“Well, that was fast.”

That’s how twenty-two year-old Lauren Plawecki began her farewell speech a few weeks ago.

Plawecki took over for her mother after she passed away suddenly in June. Plawecki says she took the position in part to finish some of the work her mother started.

“I knew that she had a lot of things in the works,” she said. “I mean I was there when she was working on them, I wanted to be the person that could see them across the finish line.”

Her time in the Legislature was during a very long lame duck session that included multiple late nights. But Plawecki said one of the most frustrating things was being a part of the minority party.

“I don’t envy the people who have to do this for the next two years in some ways. You know it’s going to be bitter sweet to leave,” she said. “Just more power to them for sticking it out. I mean they’re doing their absolute best and I really respect them for that.”

Plawecki said she was surprised by how involved the public can get in their local government, but she will miss playing such a direct role.

“I think it’s going to be really hard to give up that vote,” she said. “I’m going to have to figure out another way to make my voice heard and this is such a direct way that it’s – I’m gonna miss that a lot.”

During her short time in session, Plawecki introduced a bill to protect senior citizens and saw one of her mother’s bills pass.

Before becoming the newest Capitol reporter for the Michigan Public Radio Network, Cheyna Roth was an attorney. She spent her days fighting it out in court as an assistant prosecuting attorney for Ionia County. Eventually, Cheyna took her investigative and interview skills and moved on to journalism. She got her masters at Michigan State University and was a documentary filmmaker, podcaster, and freelance writer before finding her home with NPR. Very soon after joining MPRN, Cheyna started covering the 2016 presidential election, chasing after Donald Trump, Hillary Clinton, and all their surrogates as they duked it out for Michigan. Cheyna also focuses on the Legislature and criminal justice issues for MPRN. Cheyna is obsessively curious, a passionate storyteller, and an occasional backpacker. Follow her on Twitter at @Cheyna_R