Council conundrum: election is over, Councilwoman Young resigns

Correction: Our coverage from the November 6 election failed to point out the victory of republican Lynn Afendoulis to the 73rd district in the House of Representatives. Afendoulis earned a total of 30,777 votes compared to her democratic contender Bill Saxton, who earned 20,427 votes in that distict.


Recreational marijuana passes city, state

Tammy Bergstrom won a seat on Rockford’s City Council with a significantly higher vote of 1,214 than the next two runners up, Ed Ross and Jeff Lewis who had, respectively, 883 and 863 votes, giving Ross the win by 20 voters for his seat on Council. Beard announced to council that councilwoman Melissa Young has moved out of the city limits and therefore has resigned her seat. See related story to find out about Monday’s meeting and council decision on how to fill Young’s position.

Rockford Board of Education candidates took the three seats handily with Miles Postema earning 1,313 votes to Bobbi Jo Blanton with 1,289 and Tim Lewis with 1,281.

Following is a breakdown of how our local units of government reported results from candidates. The local results do not necessarily reflect who ultimately prevailed in their individual contests.

In the City of Rockford, turnout was 67 percent with 2,934 of the total of 4,376 registered voters going to the polls on November 6 (or voting absentee). In Rockford, Bill Schuette lost his bid for Governor to Gretchen Whitmer. Schuette earned 1,393 votes to Whitmer’s 1,417. In the bid (in Rockford) for Secretary of State, Mary Trender Lang came in top with 1,373 votes against Jocelyn Benson with 1,364. Statewide, Benson, a Democrat, was the winner of that contest.

John James outperformed Debbie Stabenow in the contest for United States Senator in Rockford, with 1,438 votes to Stabenow’s 1,397. Statewide, however the Democratic Stabenow did hang on to that seat. United States Senate incumbent Justin Amash beat Democrat contender Cathy Albro, earning 1,549  to Albro’s 1,220 votes.

Recreational marijuana use had a closer contest in Rockford, earning a yes vote with 1,589 to 1,271 no votes in the city.

Incumbent Pete MacGregor hung on to his seat as state senator for the 28th district with 1,404 to newcomer Craig Beach’s 1,357. State Representative for the 74th District Mark Huizenga won over Megan Carr, 1,466 vs. 1,291.

Algoma Township had a 67.9 percent turnout with 5,560 of 8,184 registered voters casting ballots this midterm election. If Algoma had its say, Republican Bill Schuette would be governor with a total of 3,249 votes to Gretchen Whitmer’s 2,061 votes. John James would have handily beat Debbie Stabenow for United State Senator, taking 3,378 votes to Stabenow’s 1,978. Likewise, Republican Justin Amash easily beat Democrat Cathy Albreo, 3,561 to her 1,657 within the township.

State Senator Pete MacGregor was a clear winner here, too, topping contendor Democrat Craig Beach, 3,353 to Beach’s 1818. The township said no to the recreational marijuana vote, 2,665 yes votes to 2,811 no votes.

Cannon Township had an impressive 72.4 percent turnout with 8,138 of 11,247 registered voters casting ballots. Again, Bill Schuette would be governor if Cannon voters had their way, with Schuette earning 4,869 to Whitmer’s 3,001 votes. John James would be United States senator with 5,210 to Debbie Stabenow’s 2,904. Justin Amash retained his seat as United States Representative with 5,210 votes in Cannon Township with Cathy Albro earning 2,532.

Commissioner Diane Jones on the Kent County Board of Commissioners, earned 10,007 votes in the four townships her district covers, including Cannon. She beat contender Kari Smith, who earned 5,537 votes in the same four townships.

State Senator Pete MacGregor performed well in the township, again beating contender Craig Beach 4,995 to 2,745. Lynn Afendoulis earned more than double the votes of Bill Saxton, taking 5,276 to Saxton’s 2,522. Recreational use of marijuana barely passed in the township with 3,781 voters affirming the proposal and 3,606 opposing it.

Courtland Township saw 67.5 percent of voters weigh in on this year’s midterm elections with 4,371 of 6,480 registered voters casting ballots. Bill Schuette took the governor’s race over Gretchen Whitmer, 2,675 to her 1,532. Would be United States Senator John James beat his democratic incumbent Debbie Stabenow 2,713 to her 1,518. United States Representative Justin Amash beat democratic contender Cathy Albro 2,546 to 1,308.

State Senator incumbent Peter MacGregor fared well in the township, earning 2,720 votes to Craig Beach’s 1,396. For Representative in the 73rd district Lynn Afendoulis beat her democratic opponent 2,828 to 1,317. Superintendent Matt McConnon, running unopposed, earned 3,258 votes. Recreational marijuana was defeated in the township, with 1,958 people voting in favor and 2,334 voting against.

Plainfield Township saw a 68 percent turnout, with 17,599 of 25,874 registered voters expressing their opinion at the polls. Again, Bill Schuette won his bid here to be governor against democrat Gretchen Witmer, 9,126 to 7,743. In the United States Senate race, John James earned similar numbers with 9,553 voters choosing him against 7,436 voters for incumbent Democrat Debbie Stabenow. United States Representative contender John James was triumphant in the township, taking 10,057 votes to Cathy Albro’s 6,647.

In the state race, Peter MacGregor had a strong showing in the township, taking 9,590 votes to Democrat Craig Beach’s 6,917. In the House of Representative race, Lynn Affendoulis won out over Bill Saxton with 10,103 votes to his 6,736. Marijuana fared better than in the more rural townships, with 8,990 people voting in favor of its use for recreation compared to 8,337 voters saying no.

In the actual state-wide poll, some results matched this Rockford area and some did not. Democrat Gretchen Whitmer took the Governor’s race with 2,261,450 votes (53.3 percent of the vote) to Bill Schuette’s 1,857,530 (43.8). Democrat Jocelyn Benson won her bid for Secretary of State with 60.11 percent of the vote with 2,194,802 against Mary Treder Lang at 44.03 percent of voters, 1,828,675.

Democrat Dana Nessel won 48.98 percent of the vote in her bid to to be Michigan’s Attorney General, compared to Tom Leonard at 46.3 percent of the vote, 1,927,771.

Debbie Stabenow, incumbent democrat, will continue to represent Michigan in the United States Senate with 52.19 percent of Michigan voters at 2,195,601 and beating John James who earned 45.81 percent of the vote, 1,927,232. Republican Justin Amash hung onto his seat in the United States House of Representatives for District 3 with 54.41 percent of Michigan’s voters, 167,486 compared to his democratic contender Cathy Albro, who earned 43.20 percent of the votes with 132,976 votes.

For state Senate, incumbent Republican Peter MacGregor will continue to serve with a 58.39 percent of his district 28 voters giving him 68,744 votes compared to newcomer Craig Beach who overall earned 39.02 percent of the vote with 45,937 Michiganders.

In the state House of Representatives 29th District Incumbent Chris Afendoulis, Republican, was unseated by Democrat Winnie Brinks. Afendoulis earned 41.07 percent of his district’s vote at 44,912 to Brinks’ 56.15 percent at 61,400 votes.

All three of the Michigan ballot proposals passed. Proposal 18-1, approving recreational use of marijuana, the yes votes earned 55.90 percent with 2,346,713 and no voters at 44.10 percent and 1,851,648. The bill intended to end political gerrymandering also passed with 61.27 percent and 2,511,489 votes compared to  38.73 percent of voters who said no with 1,587,439 ballots. Finally, the Promote the Vote proposal which allows no reason absentee voting, automatic voter registration and a host of other voter-friendly rules, passed with 66.91 percent, or 2,766,489 ballots and opposed by 33.09 or 1,368,032 voters.