Nov 10, 2022 - Politics

Michigan Democrats will control Legislature for first time in decades

Michigan Capitol

Michigan Capitol in Lansing. Photo: Samuel Robinson/Axios

Michigan Democrats are set to control both legislative chambers for the first time in 38 years.

Why it matters: It's the first time in nearly four decades that Democratic lawmakers will have an opportunity to pass laws that shape major issues without bipartisan support.

  • Michigan becomes one of 18 Democratic trifectas across the country after Minnesota Dems also took control of their Legislature yesterday.
  • The wins in Michigan signaled the lack of a Red Wave across the country.

What's happening: Democrats — who appear to hold a 56-54 House majority and a 20-18 Senate majority, with some races still not called by the AP — will have more power than ever to decide whether bills get to a committee hearing and ultimately what is voted on.

  • State Rep. Joe Tate (D-Detroit) is poised to become the next House speaker, while state Sen. Winnie Brinks (D-Grand Rapids) is expected to be the next Senate leader — the first woman in state history who would serve in the role.
  • And with Democrats leading budget negotiations, re-elected Gov. Whitmer's 2023 state budget recommendation will likely be even larger than this year's historic total.

Plus, Democrats in West Michigan's 3rd Congressional District flipped the seat after Hillary Scholten defeated Trump-backed election denier John Gibbs.

  • The party also maintained its majority on the Michigan Supreme Court.

Between the lines: Democrats will also be able to lead an investigation into the allegations against former speaker Lee Chatfield.

What they're saying: Michiganders won't align themselves with election deniers "who fan the flames of fear and hate," State Sen. Mallory McMorrow, who raised millions for Senate Democrats, said in a statement.


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