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Nessel goes online to announce reelection bid

Dana Nessel
Jodi Westrick
Michigan Radio
Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel

With little fanfare and even less surprise, Attorney General Dana Nessel has announced she will seek a second term.

She made the announcement Friday via an ad released online and signaled reproductive rights will be central to her reelection campaign.

“As your attorney general, I’ll keep politicians out of your bedroom,” she said.

Nessel took aim at three potential GOP nominees who have said a US Supreme Court decision that guarantees access to birth control is an issue that should be left up to states. None said they actually oppose women’s access to birth control.

The campaign launch also coincides with the U.S. Supreme Court’s consideration of a case that could reverse or erode the Roe v. Wade decision that guarantees abortion rights. Michigan has a statutory abortion ban that would be reinstated if the Supreme Court overturns Roe v Wade.

Michigan Democrats will hold an endorsement convention next month to give preliminary approval to a slate of nominees for the statewide ballot.

Nessel and incumbent Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson are expected to get the nod for re-nomination. The official nominating convention will take place in August.

Governor Gretchen Whitmer will have to be re-nominated in the August primary election.

Republicans will also choose a gubernatorial candidate in the August primary, prior to a nominating convention to choose the rest of the GOP statewide slate.

Former House Speaker and 2018 Republican nominee Tom Leonard, state Representative Ryan Berman, and attorney Matt DePerno are all actively seeking the Republican attorney general nomination.

A statement from the Michigan Republican Party suggests the GOP plans to make an issue of COVID-19 restrictions.

“Dana Nessel has spent the better part of her term as Attorney General persecuting Michiganders and dividing our families,” said Michigan Republican Communications Director Gustavo Portela. “We can’t wait to send her packing this fall along with Gretchen Whitmer and Jocelyn Benson.”

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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