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A majority of pro-equality candidates won last night in local races across the state. Of the 19 candidates endorsed by Equality Michigan Pride PAC, 13 won their elections.
And in Holland former pro-equality public school teacher Wayne Klomparens won by just 18 votes, calling the tight race winning by “a whisker.” His election secures four solid supporters of Holland’s non-discrimination ordinance that was defeated in council by a vote of 5-4 earlier this year.
Here is a listing of the Equality Michigan Pride PAC endorsees winners and losers from the elections Nov. 8:
Dave Coulter, Ferndale Mayor
Jim Carruthers, Traverse City City Commission
Stephanie Bell, Kalamazoo City Commission
Don Cooney, Kalamazoo City Commission
David Anderson, Kalamazoo City Commission
Bobby Hopewell, Kalamazoo City Commission
Robert Cinabro, Kalamazoo City Commission
Nathan Triplett, East Lansing City Council
Mike Lennon, Ferndale City Council
Dan Martin, Ferndale City Council
Marian McClellan, Oak Park Mayor
Kyle DuBuc, Royal Oak City Commission
Scott Craig, Northville Public Schools Board of Education
Nicholas Wikar, Kalamazoo City Commission
Lynne Martinez, Lansing City Council 1st Ward
Rory Neuner, Lansing City Council At-Large
Steve Manchester, Lansing School Board
Charles Kellet, Pleasant Ridge City Commission
Stephan Rapundalo, Ann Arbor City Council 2nd Ward
Traverse City voters approve non-discrimination ordinance by two-to-one margin
Voters overwhelmingly approved a measure to affirm the city’s inclusive non-discrimination ordinance. The ordinance, which includes protections for LGBT citizens, was passed last year by the city council. An anti-ordinance movement had put a measure to repeal the ordinance on Tuesday’s ballot. The measure passed by nearly a two-to-one margin, voting 2,818 to 1,661.
“I am really personally thrilled that we had such a large voter turnout and that the non-discrimination ordinance was upheld by such a tremendously large margin,” said Denise Brogan-Kator, executive director of Equality Michigan. “That means to mean that the citizens of Michigan want ordinance like this one, and the legislators in Lansing should sit up and take notice when they are considering the HB5039 that would invalid ordinances like this one that was just reaffirmed by the voters.”
“This is a wonderful victory. Traverse City voters have defended fairness and taken a strong stand for all families,” said Diana Ketola, steering committee member for Traverse City Equality, the campaign group supporting the ordinance.
Gay candidates win reelection
Jim Carruthers won reelection to his seat on the Traverse City City Council last night, and David Coulter easily won his first mayoral election in Ferndale after last year’s job-swap with current Oakland County Commissioner Craig Covey. Coulter defeated Raymond Willis with 84 percent of the vote.
Carruthers, Coulter and Covey are all openly gay. Carruthers was targeted by anti-gay activists in Traverse City for his support of the city’s inclusive non-discrimination ordinance.