There will be new leadership in the state Legislature next year. Republicans and Democrats in the House and Senate voted on Thursday on who would lead their parties.
In the Senate, current Democratic leader Jim Ananich will maintain his post.
Ananich says he’s optimistic about the Democrats' agenda next year. That’s because Democrats managed to take a couple extra seats in the Senate during the midterm election. And there will be a democratic governor.
“Naturally, there will be more compromise, there’ll be more cooperation. I think that’s what the public sent a pretty strong message that’s what they wanted. So, I’m hopeful,” he says.
Mike Shirkey is the new leader of the Republicans in the Senate. Ananich says he’s already reached out to Shirkey to start to find areas they can agree on.
After an election where female candidates propelled Democrats to gains in the state House, Representative Christine Grieg will lead the Democrats in that chamber.
Grieg says she looks forward to working across the aisle to get things done for Michigan. She says with more Democrats and more women in the chamber, the session will be different next year.
“So I think we have a whole new dynamic of working with each other as well too, and I’m sure we can move the agenda forward,” she says.
That agenda includes improving education.
The Republicans will be led in the House by Representative Lee Chatfield. Chatfield says his personal priorities include putting more money into roads and improving government accountability.