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Michigan GOP, Dems finalize November tickets

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Michigan’s Republicans and Democrats finalized their November tickets this past weekend with party conventions.

There was no roar of the crowds as the nominations, speeches and voting all took place online due to COVID-19. The conventions chose their candidates for the Michigan Supreme Court, three public university boards, and the Michigan State Board of Education.

It was also an opportunity for two parties to fire up the voters and volunteers in the final weeks leading up to the elections.

Democrats heard from their presidential nominee, former Vice President Joe Biden, who delivered his speech remotely. Biden called his plan a “made-in-America future...”

“Led by innovative American manufacturing, American supply chains, well-paid American jobs," he said. "We’re going to expand Obamacare and make health care a right for all. Michigan is going to deliver that message to our nation and to the world.”

The marquee speaker at the Republican convention was Lara Trump, daughter-in-law of President Donald Trump. She reminded the GOP how close the race was in Michigan in 2016.

“This year, the road to the White House runs through Michigan,” she said, “and I know through the hard work of the Michigan Republican Party President Donald Trump will be victorious this November.”

At the Democratic convention, Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel caused a stir when she compared Trump to Adolph Hitler.

“You’re probably thinking to yourself, that seems really unfair. How could you possibly compare Donald Trump to Adolph Hitler,” she said. “And I will tell you this – you’re right. I am being unfair. Adolph Hitler by all accounts, could read and write very well, and he was also brave enough to serve in his nation’s military.”

Hitler served in the German army during World War I. Trump claimed four student deferments and one medical deferment during the Vietnam conflict.

The comment drew a sharp rebuke from the Michigan Republican Party. State GOP chair Laura Cox called it “insane.”

Democratic Party nominees

Michigan Supreme Court

Chief Justice Bridget Mary McCormack

Elizabeth Welch

Michigan State Board of Education

Former state Representative Ellen Cogen Lipton

Jason Strayhorn

Michigan State University Board of Trustees

Rema Vassar

Brian Mosallam (incumbent)

University of Michigan Board of Regents

Mark Bernstein (incumbent)

Dr. Shauna Ryder Diggs (incumbent)

Wayne State University Board of Governors

Shirley Stancato (incumbent)

Eva Garza Dewaelsche

Republican Party nominees

Michigan Supreme Court

Michigan Court of Appeals Judge Brock Swartzle

Mary Kelly

Michigan State Board of Education

Tami Carlone

Michelle Frederick

Michigan State University Board of Trustees

Pat O’Keefe

Tonya Schuitmaker

University of Michigan Board of Regents

Sarah Hubbard

Carl Meyer

You can find third party candidates here.

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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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