Gretchen Whitmer, the Democrat governor of Michigan, appeared to be the party’s major star due to her supposedly effective handling of the COVID pandemic. However, Whitmer is up for election, and she is almost evenly tied with a GOP challenger.
Interestingly, the GOP challenger, James Craig, is a relative unknown, though his message has resonated with Michigan voters to the extent he now poses a serious challenge to the governor.
Per a recent Detroit Free Press/Epic MRA poll, Whitmer is leading against the Republican challenger by only 1 percent: Whereas Whitmer maintains 45 percent of support, support for Craig has skyrocketed to 44 percent.
Craig previously served as the police chief of Detroit from 2013 to 2021, and he was largely unknown to 52 percent of the individuals polled.
The poll results reveal that Whitmer is in a relatively precarious predicament; however, reviewing her various behaviors throughout the pandemic provide significant insight into why her popularity has tanked.
In the spirit of former New York governor Andrew Cuomo, Whitmer demanded that nursing homes accept COVID positive patients; furthermore, she refuses to admit such a policy was a compete failure, even after Cuomo had walked back the policy in his own state.
Additionally, Whitmer promulgated numerous absurd edicts, including bans on gardening equipment and pain sales at the beginning of the pandemic. Moreover, Whitmer completely disregarded many of her own draconian measures, including mandates regarding masks, travel, and indoor gatherings.
At one point, Whitmer was a potential possibility to serve as Biden’s running mate. However, long-term lockdown fatigue began to set in across the state, which health officials and Whitmer herself finally realized after her approval ratings began to drop precipitously.
Consequently, the 2022 midterm election cycle will constitute a vastly friendlier environment for GOP candidates than the alleged “blue wave” in 2018 that resulted in the election of various Democrats, such as Whitmer, across the nation. The pandemic has complicated matters further, though Whitmer’s own actions have exacerbated her declining popularity.
Per James Craig, a strong Republican candidate could compete in Michigan within highly difficult environments, which impact the entire nation. At this point in time, the 2022 midterm election cycle appears to strongly favor Republicans.
Currently, Craig is polling near-evenly with Whitmer, in spite of being largely unknown by over half of Michigan voters. This success illuminates that a viable candidate has a strong chance against well-known leftists.
Given that Whitmer has taken numerous steps to assure her own failure, hopes are high that Craig and other GOP candidates will prevail.