Kerry Bentivolio, the incumbent Republican Congressman in Michigan’s 11th Congressional District has formally announced his intention to run as a write-in candidate in the November election. Bentivolio has said he feels slighted by the “establishment” Republican Party. More importantly, he sees his candidacy as a way to get hapless stealth candidate Terri Lynn Land elected:
U.S. Rep. Kerry Bentivolio, who lost his Republican primary in August, said Thursday he intends to file Friday as a write-in candidate in the 11th Congressional District.
Bentivolio said his write-in candidacy is not designed to derail Republican Dave Trott’s campaign and hand over the GOP-dominated seat to Democrat Bobby McKenzie of Canton Township.
The Milford Republican said he’s trying to encourage discouraged Republicans to turn out to vote for GOP U.S. Senate candidate Terri Lynn Land, who trails Democrat Gary Peters in most polls.
He may say he’s not trying to derail Trott’s campaign but, no matter what his intentions are, that’s exactly what he’ll be doing. And, gracious as he is to be willing to sacrifice the 11th District House seat in his Quixotic quest to get Land elected, it’s going to take far more than a groundswell of tea party voters in the 11th District to resurrect Land’s campaign which is slowly but surely circling the drain.
But make no mistake, Bentivolio is very intentional sticking his finger in the eye of millionaire lawyer Trott. “I’m not going to endorse a guy who slandered and libeled my good name,” Bentivolio told The Detroit News. He doesn’t even expect to be much of a blip on the radar:
Bentivolio said he now thinks…at best he’ll get 2% of the vote in the Nov. 4 election. But he said he’s been contacted by so many people who say they won’t vote if he’s not on the ballot, that he will enter the race if only to drum up turnout for nominees other than Trott, including Republican U.S. Senate nominee Terri Lynn Land.
“They’re more embittered than I am,” Bentivolio said of the voters who have contacted him. He put the number of people who have contacted him directly or through other means, such as Facebook, at about 1,600.
“It’s going to be a low-key campaign,” he added.
Nobody knows “low-key campaign” like Kerry Bentivolio.
Meanwhile,, Bobby McKenzie, the Democratic nominee in MI-11, is challenging “foreclosure king” David Trott and Bentivolio to a series of debates. The McKenzie campaign is proposing the debates “be held in different parts of the district and at a variety of venues, including, but not limited to, a public school, a senior center, and a VFW hall.”
During the primary campaign, I said the the 11th District was the most interesting race in the state. Apparently, it still is.
On behalf of 11th District Democrats, Mr. Bentivolio, thank you. Thank you thank you thank you.
UPDATE: In a beautiful bit of irony, despite Bentivolio’s selfless act to help Terri Lynn Land get elected, she’s still endorsing his Republican opponent David Trott.