Republicans pick Calley over tea party challenger

NOVI, Mich. (AP/WOOD) — Democrats and Republicans are meeting Saturday and Sunday to finalize their ticket for November.

For Republicans, Saturday was the day for challenges, speeches and trying to come together for the general election.

The party conventions serve a couple of purposes. The formal nomination of what generally are forgone conclusions about Lt. Governor, Secretary of State and Attorney General – as well as Board of Education and Supreme Court. They also serve as a springboard to launch the fall election cycle.

But sometimes before you can get to that, you have to have a little good old fashioned political dust-up — Saturday was one of those times.

For months, the most conservative factions in the party — the Tea Party supporters — have been mulling over a challenge to Governor Snyder’s choice for Lt. Governor, Brian Calley.

The argument was that Calley had supported things like Medicaid expansion and didn’t fight the Common Core aggressively enough.

Of course, the governor supported those things too but a convention challenge to Calley seemed more politically practical perhaps than a primary race against a sitting governor.

Calley easily beat back a challenge from tea party activist Wes Nakagiri at Saturday’s GOP convention in the Detroit suburb of Novi.

Nakagiri called for an unanimous vote for Lt. Governor, but in the end two-thirds of the delegates wanted the Snyder Calley ticket in November.

Democrats will make their formal selections in Lansing Sunday.

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