Arbor Update

Ann Arbor Area Community News

Michigan Daily Won't Cover County Races

31. October 2004 • Murph
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Larry Kestenbaum, blogger and Democratic Candidate for Washtenaw County Clerk/Registrar of Deeds, notes that the Michigan Daily has consciously chosen not to cover County-level races. You could, of course, consider Kestenbaum to be biased towards over-estimating the importance of the County races, being a candidate, but there are at least two County-level offices which are contested and could heavily impact student interests.

The County Clerk/Registrar is responsible for administration of local elections. This includes such things as choosing polling technology, training election workers, and overseeing recounts—issues which students have been shown to have a great deal of interest in. Two candidates are running for Washtenaw County’s Clerk/Registrar position:

Larry Kestenbaum is running as a Democrat, and notes that a Democrat hasn’t held the Clerk’s position since 1932. He’s challening incumbant Peggy Haines (no campaign website available), a Republican who has held the office for 14 years. See the Ann Arbor News’ article Incumbent clerk faces a challenger and bulletpoint summary of the candidates.

The County Prosecutor (or Prosecuting Attorney) is responsible for bringing charges under State law. The Prosecutor is responsible for determining whether a person should be charged, what crime he or she should be charged with, and what sentence should be sought. Again, students can probably be expected to be interested in this office.

John Stanowski is running as a Republican, challenging Democratic incumbent Brian Mackie. Mackie has held the Prosecutor’s office since 1992; Stanowski was a Washtenaw assistant prosecuting attorney until 1992, and has since worked for the City of Jackson as an assistant city attorney. Neither have campaign websites. See the Ann Arbor News’ article Rocky history for Mackie, Stanowski.

Both races are fairly well-commented on in Ann Arbor and Ypsilanti area blogs, which are fairly unanimously choosing Kestenbaum for the Clerk/Registrar position, but split between Mackie and Stanowski for Prosecutor. 90% Crud’s George Hotelling is collecting bloggers’ recommendations on these (and other), to be posted to ArborBlogs on Nov. 1. If the Daily won’t track these races, blogland will.