Rep. (MI-8) Elissa Slotkin joined MSU Students for Slotkin volunteers in East Lansing on Monday, encouraging students to register and vote ahead of Tuesday’s election.
Slotkin is running for reelection in Michigan’s 8th congressional district, covering North Oakland, Livingston and Ingham counties. She will be up against Republican candidate Paul Junge.
When she was first elected in 2018, Slotkin defeated incumbent Rep. Mike Bishop with a 3.8% margin of victory. This marked a pivotal shift with both the 2016 and 2014 elections being won by Republican candidates. In Ingham County, Slotkin had 2.3 times the votes of her Republican counterpart, winning 80,785 votes compared to Bishop’s 35,085.
With Michigan State University (MSU) students being a huge part of Slotkin’s previous success, she said her campaign had a big moment when they found out that MSU students would not be returning to campus in the fall.
“I need them to win," Slotkin said. "Students were a huge part of my victory in 2018, and young people have the power with their votes to completely change my election and the state’s election. I can’t overstate how important Michigan State students are to the trajectory of our elections here in Michigan.”
As she took to the street of downtown East Lansing on Monday, Slotkin passed out cards to those who said they had not yet registered to vote, urging them to do so and informing them how to register to cast their ballots.
Since Aug. 1, Slotkin said 21,000 new voters have registered in the district following the 2018 election. Many students have switched their previous East Lansing voter registrations back to their hometowns; however, others have likewise moved and signed up to vote in the city, Slotkin said.
As national fears ramp up over security during and following election results, Slotkin said they have a phased plan of three things that need to be done in the state.
The first phase of this plan include the need to keep the election tomorrow safe and secure. Slotkin said she has been at the Hannah Community Center and other locations when people and register and vote the same day. She said they’re safe, easy, generally have no lines and will not tolerate voter intimidation.
Phase two includes the plans for the 78-day period of transition. Slotkin said she has spoken to all of the district’s law enforcement, mayors and township supervisors and formed a general agreement not to tolerate aggressive violence of any kind.
“No matter who wins we have to remember that the candidates don’t get to pick who wins, and that we have rules and laws on how we count votes and we’re going to need everybody to stay focused and keep their seatbelts buckled,” Slotkin said.
Phase three looks to a plan to figure out how to heal as a country after the inauguration Jan. 20, 2021.
“It’s pretty toxic right now, but I have personally spoken to law enforcement and feel confident that they’re not going to let any hooligans, any threats of violence, any thuggery happen in East Lansing or anywhere else,” Slotkin said.
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