Governor Gretchen Whitmer submits voter signatures to run for reelection
Governor Gretchen Whitmer on Thursday submitted voter signatures to run for reelection, saying Michigan needs continued strong leadership as it emerges from tough times during the COVID-19 pandemic.
The first-term Democrat thanked about 100 boisterous supporters near the Capitol before she and Lt. Governor Garlin Gilchrist submitted the petitions that candidates must file.
“The surprises we've had to deal with over the last few years have been something out of fiction,” she said. “Yet we've stood together, stood our ground and delivered for the people of this great state. We are ready to run for reelection.”
After, the governor declined to assess the 10-plus Republican candidates vying to challenge her. She said she will stay focused on key tasks such as negotiating the next state budget, including boosting school funding and supporting small businesses amid a $7 billion surplus.
Whitmer is the first incumbent governor in 48 years to seek reelection while her party controls the White House, a dynamic the GOP is optimistic about since midterms typically favor the party opposite the president. But the Republican field of political newcomers is untested and has grown in recent months without a clear front-runner.
The field will narrow after the April 19 filing deadline, when contenders must turn in 15,000 to 30,000 signatures to advance to the August primary, including at least 100 from at least half of Michigan's 14 congressional districts.