A high-profile Republican is expected to leave his post as Detroit’s Chief of Police, and run against Gov. Gretchen Whitmer (D) in 2022’s gubernatorial race.
“Detroit Police Chief James Craig, a Republican and a veteran of police departments around the country, is preparing to challenge Democratic Gov. Gretchen Whitmer in Michigan, potentially giving the GOP a formidable candidate in one of the midterm election’s highest profile gubernatorial contests,” POLITICO reported.
According to that report, Craig has already held talks with the Michigan GOP, along with Gov. Doug Ducey (R-AZ) who is the chairman of the Republican Governor’s Association.
Craig has headed the Detroit police force for eight years. He would retire from the force in order to run for governor.
Craig recently made national headlines when he slammed Rep. Rashida Tlaib (D-MI-13), who called for the abolition of policing after the shooting of Daunte Wright in Minnesota.
“You know, I got to tell you, and I’ve said it so many times,” Craig said on Fox News. “[Tlaib’s] comments were reckless and…really don’t represent the people who live in our city.”
He also called for Tlaib’s resignation, and said he would throw her a going away party if she did indeed resign.
Whitmer finds herself in a particularly vulnerable position after more than a year of COVID-19 lockdowns. Michigan saw some of the strictest lockdown orders in the nation, including a total ban on private gatherings. Whitmer has flaunted her own COVID-19 rules during the pandemic, while the virus continues to surge in the state.
She is also nagged by an ongoing scandal after former Director of the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services Robert Gordon resigned, but was paid a hefty $155,000 severance and bound to silence regarding the circumstances of his departure by a confidentiality agreement.
In February, Whitmer drew her first Republican challenger.
A political outsider, 35-year-old Austin Chenge, said he would run against Whitmer in 2022. Originally from Nigeria, Cheng is a U.S. Army veteran and resident of Grand Rapids.
– – –