Election 2022: Primaries clear Michigan fields; more will come at conventions

Michigan’s state primaries are in the rearview, but voters won’t know the full slate of candidates for Nov. 8 for another few weeks.

Candidates for three of the state’s highest-ranking offices – attorney general, lieutenant governor, and secretary of state – are not determined by state primaries. Instead, candidates for these offices are determined by party conventions.

Additionally, candidates for Supreme Court, and the boards of Michigan State University, Wayne State University, the University of Michigan, and the state Board of Education are nominated at conventions.

The two major party conventions will be held later this month, with the Democrats meeting Aug. 20-21, and Republicans convening Aug. 27. The Libertarian Party’s convention was held July 10.

According to Ballotpedia, Michigan is one of 43 states to elect an attorney general whereas seven states either allow appointment by the governor or legislature.

Incumbent AG Dana Nessel is running unopposed by other Democrat candidates. Joe McHugh was selected as the Libertarian Party’s candidate at the party’s convention last month. Three Republican candidates are vying to unseat Nessel: State Rep. Ryan Berman; attorney Matthew DePerno; and former state Rep. Tom Leonard, who squared off against Nessel in 2018.

The attorney general serves a term of four years with no term limits. For example, Frank Kelly was nicknamed the “Eternal General” because he served from 1961 to 1999, making him both the youngest elected at 36 and the oldest at 74.

The lieutenant governor field includes Democratic incumbent Garlin Gilchrist, Libertarian Brian Ellison and Green Party candidate Destiny Clayton. A Republican contender for the office has yet to be determined.

Incumbent Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson, a Democrat, will be challenged by one of the four Republican candidates: Cindy Berry; Kristina Karamo; state Rep. Beau LaFave; or Cathleen Postmus. Additional challengers are Libertarian Gregory Stempfle and Green Party candidate Larry Hutchinson Jr.

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