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Michigan Republican Party: Wikis


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The Michigan Republican Party is the state affiliate of the national Republican Party in Michigan. It is sometimes referred to as MIGOP, which simply means Michigan Grand Old Party.


Current elected Republicans in Michigan

Ron Weiser is the current chairman of the Michigan GOP, being elected February 22, 2009 at the state convention. Weiser is a former United States Ambassador to Slovakia, appointed by George W. Bush in November 2001 and served until December 2004. Sharon Wise, is Vice-chairman of the state party. [1] Its National Committee Members are Keith Butler and Holly Hughes.

Terri Lynn Land was re-elected as Michigan Secretary of State and Mike Cox also was re-elected as Michigan Attorney General in 2006.

Current Michigan Republicans in U.S. Congress

Seven of the fifteen current U. S. Representatives from Michigan are Republican.

Name Residence Current district Date took office
Peter Hoekstra Holland 2nd district January 5, 1993
Vern Ehlers Grand Rapids 3rd district December 7, 1993
David Lee Camp Midland 4th district January 3, 1991
Fred Upton St. Joseph 6th district January 6, 1987
Mike Rogers Howell 8th district January 3, 2001
Candice S. Miller Harrison Township 10th district January 7, 2003
Thaddeus McCotter Livonia 11th district January 7, 2003

History and notable Michigan Republicans

The Republican Party was born in the early 1850s by anti-slavery activists and individuals who believed that government should grant western lands to settlers free of charge. The first informal meeting of the party took place in Ripon, Wisconsin, a small town northwest of Milwaukee, WI. The first official Republican meeting took place on July 6, 1854 in Jackson, Michigan with David S. Walbridge serving as chairman. The name "Republican" was chosen because it alluded to equality and reminded individuals of Thomas Jefferson's Democratic-Republican Party. At the Jackson convention, the new party adopted a platform and nominated candidates for office in Michigan.

In 1856, the Republicans became a national party when John C. Fremont was nominated for President of the United States under the slogan: "Free soil, free labor, free speech, free men, Fremont." Even though they were considered a "third party" because the Democrats and Whigs represented the two-party system at the time, Fremont received 33% of the vote. Four years later, Abraham Lincoln became the first Republican to win the White House. (For continued history [[2]])

Republicans have been elected Governor of Michigan 26 out of 47 elections. The first was Kingsley Bingham in 1855 and the most recent was John Engler who left office January 1, 2003.

Gerald R. Ford, the 38th U.S. President, grew up in Grand Rapids, MI.

Gerald R. Ford was the only Republican U.S. President and also the only Republican U.S. Vice President from Michigan. He was also the longest living President in U.S. History who died at the age of 93, only surpassing Ronald Reagan by 45 days. He is the only President born in Nebraska, as well as the only President to be buried in Michigan. His wife Betty is currently living in California.

The only Associate Justice of the Supreme Court of the United States from Michigan who was appointed by a Republican President (Benjamin Harrison) was Henry Billings Brown. Zachariah Chandler and Arthur E. Summerfield are the only Michiganders to become Chairman of the Republican National Committee.


History of Michigan Republicans in U.S. Congress

Thomas W. Ferry was the first Republican from Michigan to become president pro tempore of the Senate (1875-79). Arthur H. Vandenberg was the second (1947-49) as well as the longest serving Republican U.S. Senator from Michigan at 23 years. None have been a U.S. Sentate party leader from Michigan.

In 1857, Zachariah Chandler was the first Republican to serve as U.S. Senator from Michigan (Class 1). Two years later, he served alongside fellow Republican Kinsley Bingham (Class 2). The GOP would continue being elected to serve alongside each other until 1923. The last time two Republicans were simultaneous U.S. Senators from Michigan was from 1953-55 with Homer Ferguson and Charles E. Potter. The last Republican to serve as a U.S. Senator from Michigan was E. Spencer Abraham who left office in 2001.

No Republican Michigander has ever been Speaker of the United States House of Representatives or House Majority Leader.

Gerald R. Ford is the only Republican House Minority Leader (1965-69) from Michigan.

In 1855, William A. Howard (1st district), Henry Waldron (2nd district), and David S. Walbridge (3rd district) became the first three Republicans to serve in the U.S. House of Representatives from Michigan. Republicans were seated in all Michigan congressional districts during these years: 1857-59, 1860-63, 1865-71, 1873-75, 1879-83, 1895-97, 1899-1903, 1905-11, 1921-23, and 1925-33.

Roy O. Woodruff served 32 years in the U.S. House, the longest as a Republican from Michigan.

Ruth Thompson of Whitehall was the first woman to represent Michigan in Congress and the first woman to serve in the U.S. House Judiciary Committee.

United States Cabinet Members who served under a Republican President

The following are in order of Presidential succession.

Name Cabinet Position Years Served President(s) served under
Charles Erwin Wilson Secretary of Defense 1953-57 Dwight D. Eisenhower
Zachariah Chandler Secretary of the Interior 1875-77 Ulysses S. Grant
Roy Dikeman Chapin Secretary of Commerce 1932-33 Herbert Hoover
Frederick H. Mueller Secretary of Commerce 1959-61 Dwight D. Eisenhower
Governor George W. Romney Secretary of Housing and Urban Development 1969-73 Richard Nixon
Spencer Abraham Secretary of Energy 2001-05 George W. Bush
Governor Russell A. Alger Secretary of War obsolete 1897-99 William McKinley
Truman H. Newberry Secretary of the Navy obsolete 1908-09 Theodore Roosevelt
Edwin C. Denby Secretary of the Navy obsolete 1921-24 Warren G. Harding & Calvin Coolidge
Arthur E. Summerfield Postmaster General obsolete 1953-61 Dwight D. Eisenhower

Chairmen of the Michigan Republican State Committee

Henry P. Baldwin is the only former Governor to become MIGOP chairman. Bagley and Groesbeck had not been Governor yet.
Name Residence Years Served
Joseph Warren Detroit 1854-1855
James M. Edmunds Detroit 1855-1861
E.C. Walker Detroit 1861-1862
William Alanson Howard[1] Detroit 1862-1868
Governor John J. Bagley[2] Detroit 1868-1870
Stephen D. Bingham Lansing 1870-1878
George H. Hopkins Detroit 1878
Zachariah Chandler[3] Detroit 1878-1879
James McMillan[4] Detroit 1879-1880
Governor Henry P. Baldwin[5] Detroit 1880-1882
Edward S. Lacey Charlotte 1882-1884
Philip T. Van Zile Charlotte 1884-1886
James McMillan Detroit 1886-1888
George H. Hopkins Detroit 1888-1890
James McMillan Detroit 1890-1896
Dexter M. Ferry Detroit 1896-1898
Arthur M. Marsh Allegan 1898-1900
Gerrit J. Diekema[6] Holland 1900-1910
W.F. Knox Sault Ste. Marie 1910-1912
Governor Alex Groesbeck[7] Detroit 1912-1914
Gilman M. Dame Northport 1914-1916
John D. Magnum Marquette 1916-1919
Burt D. Cady Port Huron 1919-1925
Kennedy L. Potter Jackson 1925-1927
Gerrit J. Diekema Holland 1927-1929
Howard C. Lawrence Ionia and Saginaw 1929-1937
James F. Thomson Jackson 1937-1940
Leslie B. Butler Lansing 1940-1942
John R. Dethmers[8] Holland 1942-1945
John A. Wagner Battle Creek 1945-1949
Owen Cleary[9] Ypsilanti 1949-1953
John Feikens[10] Detroit 1953-1957
Lawrence Lindemer Stockbridge 1957-1961
George Van Peursem Zeeland 1961-1963
Arthur G. Elliott, Jr. Birmingham 1963-1965
Elly M. Peterson[11] Charlotte 1965-1969
William F. McLaughlin Northville 1969-1979
Melvin L. Larson Oxford 1979-1983
E. Spencer Abraham[12] East Lansing 1983-1991
David J. Doyle Okemos 1991-1995
Susy Heintz (Avery) Clinton Township 1995-1996
Elisabeth "Betsy" DeVos[13] Grand Rapids 1996-2000
Gerald "Rusty" Hills[14] East Lansing 2000-2003
Elisabeth "Betsy" DeVos Grand Rapids 2003-2005
Saulius "Saul" Anuzis Lansing 2005-2009
Ron Weiser[15] Ann Arbor 2009-present


  1. ^ William Alanson Howard later became U. S. Representative for the Michigan's 1st congressional district (1855-59), (1860-61) and Governor of Dakota Territory (1878–1880)
  2. ^ John J. Bagley later served as Governor of Michigan (1873–1877)
  3. ^ Zachariah Chandler had previously been Mayor of Detroit (1851–1852), U. S. Senator (Class 1) from Michigan (1857–1875, 1879) U. S. Secretary of the Interior (1875–77) and simutaneously Chairman of the Republican National Committee (1876-79)
  4. ^ James McMillan was also a U. S. Senator (Class 2) from Michigan (1889–1902)
  5. ^ Henry P. Baldwin had previously served as Governor of Michigan (1869–1873) and United States Senator (Class 1) from Michigan (1879–1881)
  6. ^ Gerrit J. Diekema had also been U. S. Representative for the Michigan's 5th congressional district (1907–1911)
  7. ^ Alex Groesbeck was later Michigan Attorney General (1917–1920) and Governor of Michigan (1921–1927)
  8. ^ John R. Dethmers was later Michigan Attorney General (1945– 1946)
  9. ^ Owen Cleary was later Michigan Secretary of State (1953– 1954)
  10. ^ John Feikens is currently Senior Judge, U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan (since 1986)
  11. ^ Elly M. Peterson was the first woman to serve as chairman of any official state party.
  12. ^ E. Spencer Abraham later became U. S. (Class 1) from Michigan (1995—2001) and U. S. Secretary of Energy (2001–2005)
  13. ^ Elisabeth "Betsy" DeVos is the wife of 2006 Republican Gubernatorial candidate Dick DeVos
  14. ^ Gerald "Rusty" Hills is currently the communications director for State of Michigan Attorney General Mike Cox.
  15. ^ Ron Weiser is a former United States Ambassador to Slovakia, appointed by George W. Bush in November 2001 and served until December 2004.

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