Michigan GOP gubernatorial candidates make pitch to voters as primary election nears

The primary election will take place on Aug. 2.
What Michigan voters should know about the GOP Gubernatorial candidates.
Published: Jul. 26, 2022 at 7:52 PM EDT
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LANSING, Mich. (WLUC) - Michigan’s primary election is one week away.

Voters will decide on one of five GOP gubernatorial candidates running to challenge Gov. Gretchen Whitmer this fall. These candidates are Tudor Dixon, Ryan Kelley, Ralph Rebandt, Kevin Rinke and Garrett Soldano.

Tudor Dixon said one of her biggest goals is finding ways to bring people back to the state. Dixon added that Michigan’s population is declining across the board, meaning fewer are employed in the state. Dixon noted that a shortage of healthcare workers is being felt by many.

“Over this last year, we are seeing that people are actually leaving the state,” Dixon explained. “How do we bring people back in all professions and healthcare has to be absolutely top of the line. We have got to make sure that we have the healthcare professionals we need.”

Ryan Kelley said one of his policy priorities is solving America’s mental health crisis. Kelley suggested that Christian communities work with the government to create more mental health resources.

“What can the government do to partner with some of these faith-based communities to empower them and help play a larger role in addressing mental health issues,” Kelley explained. “I think expanding the availability of mental health coverage would be extremely important.”

Ralph Rebandt said his campaign is based on truth, dignity, respect and love. Like the other four Republican gubernatorial candidates in Michigan, Rebandt said he is pro-choice. Rebandt added that Michigan’s upcoming pro-choice ballot initiative could be dangerous.

“What kind of society slaughters their young, whether it is at nine months pregnant or after conception,” Rebandt said. “I am very much against that proposal.”

Kevin Rinke said one of his focuses is improving education. Rinke claimed that around half of all students in the Michigan public school system are ‘illiterate.’

“Illiterate is defined as, ‘students that are one to three years of reading grade proficiency below normal,’” Rinke said. “We have to start looking at literacy in our public schools.”

Garrett Soldano said maintaining secure elections is one of the biggest issues he is running on. Soldano added that he supports an audit of the 2020 election and expanding voter ID laws.

“We need to constantly make sure that our election systems are integrous and that every single person’s vote counts,” Soldano noted. “I think that is the whole foundation of being an American. The faith that when I cast a vote it is going to count towards who I want to represent me.”

The primary election is Tuesday, Aug. 2.

The winner of the GOP gubernatorial primary will face Gov. Gretchen Whitmer in this fall’s general election.

Meet the candidates here.

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