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Bentivolio, Cassis vie for Michigan 11 House seat

In the wake of former Rep. Thad McCotter’s June 2 resignation, tea party favorite Kerry Bentivolio and write-in candidate Nancy Cassis fight for the GOP nomination.

If Nancy Cassis was on the ballot in the Republican primary Tuesday, few doubt that the former state senator and state representative would handily be nominated for Congress in Michigan‚??s 11th District (Wayne-Oakland Counties).

But, because of a string of bizarre happenings involving flawed petitions for renomination, embattled GOP Rep. Thad McCotter announced his decision to retire June 2 — after the state‚??s filing deadline. Accordingly, the 68-year-old Cassis — the choice of local party leaders — could only run as a write-in candidate. The lone candidate on the ballot was Kerry Bentivolio, area leader for Ron Paul‚??s presidential campaign and a U.S. Army veteran of Vietnam and Desert Storm.

Cassis has spent a six-figure amount from her personal income and emphasized her background as a fiscal conservative during the campaign. But this doesn‚??t change the fact that writing in a candidate‚??s name on the Water Wonderland ballot and having it count is not as easy as it sounds. Although ‚??intent‚?Ě rather than precise spelling is how election officials determine the vote, the voter must also shade in an oval space on the ballot after he or she writes in a name in order to have it count.

Initially thought to be a gadfly, Bentivolio developed potential as a serious contender the day after McCotter exited the race. Veteran political consultant John Yob has signed on as his campaign quarterback and the ‚??Liberty for All‚?Ě SuperPAC, headed by Texas multimillionaire and Ron Paul enthusiast John Ramsey, has weighed in strongly with mailings and TV spots on behalf of Bentivolio.

A mass mailing of postcards by the SuperPAC takes past votes in the legislature by Cassis and links ‚??Nancy Cassis to Nancy Pelosi.‚?Ě

‚??Based on who is supporting her and her recognition from past races and service, Nancy should win,‚?Ě said one Oakland County GOP activist. ‚??But having to win through write-ins is difficult for anyone. And besides, (Bentivolio) is running on a platform to abolish the income tax and the IMF and get out of the UN and the IMF. That resonates with a lot of folks.‚?Ě

No one is calling this race for sure. And no one argues that, even with a heated Senate primary and a Democratic primary battle for the seat of retiring Democratic Rep. Dale Kildee in the Flint-Bay City district, the race in Michigan‚??s 11th is the strangest of all.

Written By

John Gizzi has come to be known as ‚??the man who knows everyone in Washington‚?Ě and, indeed, many of those who hold elected positions and in party leadership roles throughout the United States. With his daily access to the White House as a correspondent, Mr. Gizzi offers readers the inside scoop on what‚??s going on in the nation‚??s capital. He is the author of a number of popular Human Events features, such as ‚??Gizzi on Politics‚?Ě and spotlights of key political races around the country. Gizzi also is the host of ‚??Gizzi‚??s America,‚?Ě video interviews that appear on HumanEvents.com. Gizzi got his start at Human Events in 1979 after graduating from Fairfield University in Connecticut and then working for the Travis County (Tex.) Tax Assessor. He has appeared on hundreds of radio and TV shows, including Fox News Channel, C-SPAN, America's Voice,The Jim Bohannon Show, Fox 5, WUSA 9, America's Radio News Network and is also a frequent contributor to the BBC -- and has appeared on France24 TV and German Radio. He is a past president of the Georgetown Kiwanis Club, past member of the St. Matthew's Cathedral's Parish Council, and secretary of the West End Friends of the Library. He is a recipient of the William A. Rusher Award for Journalistic Excellence and was named Journalist of the Year by the Conservative Political Action Conference in 2002. John Gizzi is also a credentialed correspondent at the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund. He has questioned two IMF managing directors, Dominique Strauss-Kahn and Christine LaGarde, and has become friends with international correspondents worldwide. John‚??s email is JGizzi@EaglePub.Com

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