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GOP Frontrunners Afraid to Take on Sen. Stabenow?

Apr 15, 2011

News from
The Michigan Democratic Party

April 15, 2011

GOP Frontrunners Afraid to Take on Sen. Stabenow?
Hoekstra’s Decision Not to Run Leaves Weak GOP Field

LANSING – Now that Pete Hoekstra is out of the race, will the GOP be able get any candidates who are “head and shoulders” (in the words of GOP Chairman Bobby Schostak) above the rest to take on U.S. Sen. Debbie Stabenow in 2012? Today's announcement that Pete Hoekstra is not running is news that Politico says is, “a blow to GOP efforts to recruit a top tier candidate into the race against Debbie Stabenow.”

“Hoekstra's decision is not surprising,” said Michigan Democratic Party Chair Mark Brewer. “Debbie Stabenow is getting results on issues important to Michigan families like supporting small businesses, growing our agriculture industry, standing up to China's unfair trade policies and stopping Asian Carp.  She is in a very strong position so it's not a shock that Republicans are having trouble finding a top tier candidate willing to run against her.”

Debbie Stabenow is an effective leader for Michigan, achieving results on issues critically important to Michigan families.  As Chairwoman of the Senate Agriculture committee, Sen. Stabenow is helping to strengthen Michigan's 2nd largest industry, agriculture.  She has passed important legislation to cut taxes and reduce paperwork for Michigan's small businesses.  She is one of the country's most prominent leader's in the fight to prosecute China for unfair trade practices and standing up to their currency manipulation practices that kill Michigan manufacturing jobs.  She's working to create jobs in high-tech manufacturing like advanced batteries and new vehicle technology.  And she is leading the effort to stop Asian Carp from decimating the Great Lakes and stop Canadian trash from packing Michigan's landfills.

Senator Stabenow is a skilled campaigner who has never lost to a Republican opponent.  She works hard every day and has never taken voters for granted.  On Wednesday it was reported Senator Stabenow is in an extremely strong position heading into the campaign, having raised over $5 million already for the 2012 race.  Two days later, Hoekstra decided he could not compete.

“It's no wonder Republicans are having a tough time fielding a candidate against Senator Stabenow,” continued Brewer. “Recently, GOP Chairman Bobby Schostak said he hoped a candidate who was ‘head and shoulders’ above the rest of the field would enter the race--and that was when Hoekstra was still considered a possible contender (story below). If the Chairman of the Republican Party thought the field was weak before, imagine how he feels now that the party's #1 contender has shied away from the challenge.”

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