Former state Sen. Curtis Hertel Jr. (D-East Lansing) on Monday morning introduced his run for Congress in 2024, following a proper marketing campaign announcement from former state Sen. Tom Barrett (R-Charlotte) on Sunday evening.
Hertel and Barrett are every searching for their respective get together’s nomination to signify Michigan’s seventh Congressional District, a swing seat in mid-Michigan.
Whereas saying his candidacy on the Lansing United Affiliation Native 333, Hertel mentioned bipartisanship whereas highlighting Democratic successes from earlier this 12 months, together with repealing Michigan’s 1931 ban on abortion, increasing the Elliott-Larsen Civil Rights Act to incorporate LGBTQ+ folks, and passing a number of measures geared toward enhancing gun security.
“Persons are bored with Republicans and Democrats combating in Washington. All they need us to do is sit down and do not forget that we work for them,” Hertel mentioned.
The seventh District seat is held by U.S. Rep. Elissa Slotkin (D-Lansing), who introduced this 12 months she could be working for U.S. Senate in 2024, concentrating on an open seat beforehand held by Sen. Debbie Stabenow (D-Lansing).
Barrett beforehand served two phrases within the Michigan Home of Representatives between 2015 and 2018 and one time period within the state Senate from 2019 to 2022. He unsuccessfully ran in opposition to Slotkin in 2022 in an costly race that totaled greater than $26 million in marketing campaign spending.
In a cellphone interview with the Advance on Monday afternoon, Barrett mentioned he had texted Hertel to congratulate him on his marketing campaign announcement and that he regarded ahead to seeing him within the district.
“I feel there are an amazing variety of variations between the 2 of us, and the marketing campaign will illustrate that,” Barrett mentioned “On the finish of the day, we’re very accustomed to each other. That comes with its strengths in addition to its drawbacks.”
Barrett’s marketing campaign strategist, Jason Roe, instructed the Lansing State Journal in February that Barrett would run once more in 2024, previous to the official announcement on Sunday.
Hertel served within the state Senate from 2015 to 2022. After leaving the Senate because of time period limits, He served as Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s legislative director earlier than resigning on the finish of June, prompting hypothesis that he would launch a congressional marketing campaign.
Slotkin beforehand touted Hertel as a possible successor for representing the seventh Congressional District. Following his marketing campaign announcement, Slotkin introduced her assist for Hertel in a tweet.
“My good friend Curtis Hertel is working for my seat in Congress. He’s a devoted public servant, and the robust fighter we have to defend this seat,” Slotkin mentioned.
“I’m supporting him as a result of I do know he’s a relentless fighter for Michigan. He’s in it to win, and I hope you’ll chip in at present to assist preserve Michigan’s seventh blue,” she mentioned, sharing a hyperlink to Hertel’s fundraising web page.
Previous to his Monday morning announcement, Hertel had opened a web page on ActBlue, a fundraising web site utilized by Democratic candidates and different left-leaning organizations.
State Sen. Sam Singh (D-East Lansing) was current for Hertel’s marketing campaign occasion, later posting a photo of the event on Twitter.
“Proud to be on the kick-off for my good friend, [Curtis Hertel Jr.] for Congress,” Singh mentioned.
In his announcement, Hertel additionally targeted on points like taxes, prescription drug costs, bringing jobs again to the U.S. and defending civil rights.
“I imagine in decrease taxes for working folks. I imagine in prescription drug aid for all of our residents. I imagine we have to spend money on our folks to convey jobs house,” Hertel mentioned.
“We’d like to verify on a regular basis persons are represented in Washington, greater than companies and large particular pursuits. And I imagine we have to defend our most simple civil rights like the suitable to arrange, the suitable to vote and the suitable to make personal medical selections with out authorities interference,” Hertel mentioned.
When requested about probably going through Barrett — his former Senate colleague — within the basic election, Hertel cited his historical past of bipartisan efforts.
“I labored with numerous Republicans so as to do massive issues like bringing jobs right here to Lansing,” Hertel mentioned. “I feel folks have a selection on this race. If they need any individual who’s going to work with each side of the aisle to get issues carried out with mid-Michigan households, we’ve a robust document of doing that previously.”
When requested about his priorities for 2024 Barrett outlined to the Advance his 4 pillars of safety, specializing in nationwide safety, border safety, neighborhood safety — or crime prevention — and financial safety.
Barrett shared considerations about U.S. relations with China, and spoke out in opposition to offering state funding for the Gotion Inc. battery plant close to Large Rapids in West Michigan.
“I can guarantee you that if the Chinese language authorities is concerned, then it’s not in one of the best curiosity of People to be collaborating,” Barrett mentioned.
Whereas Republicans have claimed the Gotion battery plant undertaking is a entrance for the Chinese language Communist Social gathering, as its mother or father firm, Guoxuan Excessive-Tech Co., is predicated in China, the corporate has pushed again in opposition to these claims.
“Regardless of what any present politicians would possibly say, there is no such thing as a communist plot inside Gotion,” mentioned Chuck Thelen, the corporate’s vp for North American operations.
Barrett additionally shared considerations about fentanyl and human trafficking on the southern border, crime, and financial safety for American households.
“I feel that the dearth of a voice for folks in households like mine are actually what’s motivating me to step up and try to do that. I’m a daily man. I’ve obtained 4 youngsters, reside in a small city outdoors of Lansing,” Barrett mentioned.
“I feel that there’s been a scarcity of consideration and voice for folks, households like mine, in Washington. I can’t sit by and watch it, you understand, worsen. I’ve to do my greatest to step up and do my half,” he mentioned.