Michigan U.S. Senate Candidate Dodges Auto Bailout Question, Trails In Poll

Michigan GOP candidate for US Senate Terri Lynn Land took part in the Mackinac Policy conference Wednesday along with her opponent, congressman Gary Peters of Michigan’s 14th district this week.

Land had defended presidential candidate Mitt Romney’s anti-bailout position two years ago, and noted that GM had become known as “Government Motors.”

She declined to revisit the topic Wednesday during a brief exchange with reporters, which she cut short following the forum, reported The Grand Rapids Press.

“I’ve always supported auto workers,” Land said. “Detroit put Michigan on wheels. They’re the backbone of our economy here in Michigan. It’s great that the autos are doing well. I support the autos, and what I want to do is go down to Washington, D.C. and make sure we have a competitive environment here in Michigan and that you don’t over-regulate, you don’t overtax and you don’t over-burden Michigan families.”

Peters said: “The auto rescue has been a great success thanks to what happened with General Motors and Chrysler, but I have a difference of opinion with my opponent. You can’t be a senator from Michigan and not support something that is so important for our number one industry and really the lifeblood of who we are.”

Land drew some criticism in April after video surfaced of her giving a speech in 2010 at a Senior Women’s Club event.

Speaking about equal pay, Land said, “Well, we all like to be paid more and that’s great, but the reality is that women have a different lifestyle. They have kids. They have to take them to get dentist appointments, doctors appointments, all those kinds of things. And they’re more interested in flexibility in a job than pay.”

Land is a former Michigan Secretary of State and was a member of the Republican National Committee from 2012 until early 2014, when she stepped down due to her senate run.

An EPIC-MRA poll conducted May 17-20 showed Peters held a 44%-38% lead over Land, The Detroit Free Press reported. The overall margin is attributable to a 14-percentage-point advantage Peters has among women.

Michigan has long been a state with political division. Western Michigan (other than the city of Grand Rapids) is a Republican stronghold. Eastern Michigan votes decidedly Democrat.

Land, from Byron Center, near Grand Rapids, led 58%-25% in west Michigan, but Peters enjoyed a 54%-30% lead in Wayne, Oakland, and Macomb counties – the most populous areas of the state. Peters lives in Bloomfield Hills, north of Detroit.

The winner will replace long time senator Carl Levin (D), who is retiring after this term.

[Image via fox17online.com]