Democrats — October 24, 2013 at 8:59 am

Two Democrats are officially running for Kerry Bentivolio’s Congressional seat


There’s a third possibility, too, in what’s shaping up to be an interesting race.

In his first media interview, counterterrorism expert Bobby McKenzie told Inside Michigan Politics early Thursday that he’s running for Michigan’s 11th Congressional District as a Democrat.

McKenzie, who most recently worked for the U.S. State Department, is set to announce his bid on Thursday. He told Inside Michigan Politics he’s running for Congress because of his commitment to the area, whose economy has been “devastated.”

McKenzie earned a degree in economics from Michigan State University. In his work with the U.S. State Department, he specialized in North Africa and Middle East strategic counterterrorism, focusing heavily on guiding youth away from involvement in extremist organizations.

He seems confident about running against whoever wins the Republican primary: incumbent Rep. Kerry Bentivolio or challenger David Trott. Here’s what McKenzie told Inside Michigan Politics.

I have a background that contrasts nicely with a divisive Tea Party ideologue and a bankruptcy lawyer who’s made a lot of money off the misery of people in this district.

A second candidate, Bloomfield urologist Anil Kumar, M.D., has also filed to run in the 11th Congressional District. He spoke at the meeting of the 11th District Democratic club last weekend, emphasizing his commitment to education, healthcare reform, and the Democratic principles of opportunity for all.

There may still be a third Democratic candidate. As we wrote about here last week, Jocelyn Benson is reportedly considering running in the 11th Congressional District, too.

We’ll continue providing updates as news develops.

UPDATE: We promised updates, and just hours after posting this, we have some.

Jocelyn Benson said Thursday that she’s talking with her family and plans to make a decision on running within days. She said she’s “frustrated and angry with a Congress that is more interested in scoring political points than doing its job” and thanked everyone who has encouraged her to run for their belief in her leadership.

What’s more, a former corrections worker, William Rosevelt, is getting into the race, according to a report in the Oakland Press on September 30.

And then there were four. Maybe. Stay tuned.