We are just 12 days away from the Michigan Gubernatorial Primary and new polls are showing distinct leaders in each party.
On the Republican side, Attorney General Bill Schuette has opened an 18 point lead over Lieutenant Governor Brian Calley. For the Democrats, Gretchen Whitmer is polling at 49 percent, 27 points higher than her nearest competition.
The primaries are the game within the game, winners here get to face the other team and so far the unofficial scorecards of the election, the polls, are looking good for Bill Schuette and Gretchen Whitmer.
“The primary polling at this point, we haven’t seen if that’s really going to play out,” says Michigan Republican Party Deputy Communications Director Tony Zammit.
On the Democrat’s side, according to a new poll from EPIC-MRA of Lansing, Whitmer leads the way with 49 percent, Shri Thanedar is next at 22 percent and then Abdul El-Sayed trails with 19 percent.
A sizable lead for the former Michigan Senate Minority Leader but if the 2016 Presidential election taught us anything, the polls aren’t the final tally.
“We could see some surprises again,” says Democratic strategist Susan Demas, “You definitely do see more enthusiasm especially on the Democrat’s side so I definitely don’t think Gretchen Whitmer is taking her lead for granted.”
For the Republicans, things are a little tighter. Schuette is sitting at 42 percent, Calley is at 24 percent while Patrick Colbeck and Jim Hines sit at 11 percent and 8 percent respectively.
Both races have seen the top names get heated here in the final weeks, but by August 8, these current competitors will fall back on to the same teams.
“It’s totally more about getting out there and setting up that system so we can plug that nominee in and we support them once they have our nomination,” says Zammit.
And once the final two are left standing, that’s when the competition just starts getting intense.
“I think after Labor Day, if you’re not a big fan of politics, you may want to shut off your TV or avoid the internet,” says Demas, “We’re going to see tens of millions dollars spent.”