One of northern Michigan’s most competitive state House districts will have an open seat this fall.
Rep. Curt VanderWall (R-Ludington) has announced he will not seek re-election in the 101st District, which spans from Northport to Ludington.
VanderWall is instead running for the open 35th District state Senate seat. Twelve counties make up that large Senate district, including Leelanau, Wexford, Crawford and Ogemaw Counties.
“I had people throughout the district that encouraged me to enter the race,” VanderWall says. “And after a lot of prayer, and a lot of thought, and working with a lot of different people, we made that decision.”
VanderWall was elected in the 101st District in 2016. He beat former state Rep. Dan Scripps by eight percentage points.
Democrat Kathy Wiejaczka – a registered nurse from Empire – is the only person to declare as a candidate in the 101st District in 2018.
VanderWall faces an experienced Republican primary field in the 35th District Senate race.
Former state Reps. Ray Franz and Bruce Rendon are both running.
“I feel right now when people do get to know who I am,” VanderWall says, “they’re going to understand that I’m the right man for this job.”