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Two House Democrats survive mayoral primaries in Warren, Westland

Democratic Reps. Kevin Coleman and Lori Stone are running for mayor in Westland and Warren, respectively. (Courtesy photos)
  • Democratic Reps. Kevin Coleman, Lori Stone advanced in Westland, Warren mayoral primaries Tuesday
  • If both win in November, it would mark the first tie in the House in decades
  • Voters in cities and school districts in 49 counties went to the polls Tuesday

Two Michigan House Democrats survived mayoral primaries during Tuesday’s municipal elections, creating the possibility for a temporary tie in the chamber early next year. 

Both Rep. Kevin Coleman of Westland and Rep. Lori Stone of Warren placed second in six-way primaries for city mayor positions, unofficial election results show. Both seats are nonpartisan roles, meaning the top two vote-getters advance to the general election in November. 

If both sitting lawmakers were to win in November and step down from their seats, the House would be deadlocked at 54-54, marking the first time Michigan has split the House since 1994.  If either loses, House Democrats would retain a narrow majority, as they could continue to serve out their current legislative terms. 

Both seats trend Democratic, and House rules stipulate that Speaker Joe Tate, D-Detroit, would retain control of the agenda in the event of such a tie between any vacancies and the subsequent special election, which would be called by Gov. Gretchen Whitmer. 

Amber McCann, spokesperson for House Democrats, said Tate is prepared for all potential outcomes, noting the caucus is prepared to continue advancing legislative priorities and that Tuesday’s primary “does not change that focus.”

In Westland, interim mayor Michael Londeau won 44.5 percent of the city’s 10,464 votes, while Coleman earned 41.13 percent. It’s a special election to replace longtime mayor Bill Wild, who resigned in January 2023 for a job in the private sector.

Other candidates in the race — Ali Awadi, Jim Godbout, Anthony Jones and Ronald Sassak — were knocked out of the running. 

Londeau, in a statement, called Tuesday’s results a “resounding victory” that serves as a testament to his work in the office since he was appointed interim mayor by the Westland City Council.

Coleman said in a statement that his campaign is far from over, noting he’s “within striking distance” to win in November.  

In the Warren primary, the top vote-getter was George Dimas, a former City Council member who earned backing from many supporters of outgoing Mayor Jim Fouts.  Dimas received 33.5 percent of the vote, with Stone coming in second with 27.52 percent. 

Stone edged Patrick Green, who received 26.24 percent of votes, to face Dimas in the general election. Other candidates included Michelle Nard, Scott Cameron Stevens and Alfonso King.

Fouts sought but was denied ballot access for the primary due to city term limits. He recently filed a federal lawsuit seeking to decertify Tuesday’s results and secure a new election with his name on the ballot.

Should Coleman and Stone prevail in November, it would require House Democrats — who currently hold an outright majority in the Legislature for the first time in decades — to seek assistance from Republicans to pass legislation, who by and large have been loath to support many Democratic priorities.

The two mayoral races were among a slew of other local primaries and millage proposals Michigan voters in 49 counties weighed in on Wednesday.

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