Democratic candidate enters race for Michigan's 11th district

Oct 24, 2013

A former State Department official announced today he will begin his campaign for Congress in Michigan’s 11th District.

Bobby McKenzie, a Democrat known for his counterterrorism expertise, is running for the seat currently held by Republican Kerry Bentivolio.

It remains unclear as to who McKenzie could run against if selected as the Democratic candidate. Bentivolio’s spot isn’t set in stone — attorney David Trott announced his run for the district’s Republican nomination in September.

"The men and women of this district deserve better than a divisive Tea Party extremist like Kerry Bentivolio, and we deserve better than the prospect of David Trott, a man who made a fortune off the bankruptcies and foreclosures that have devastated our region," McKenzie said in his campaign announcement.

The district, which represents more than 700,000 residents northwest of Detroit, typically leans Republican, but as the Associated Press reported, Democrats think they have a chance in 2014:

“The district favors Republicans, but Democrats see a chance because Bentivolio is a tea party-backed representative who won in 2012 after the Republican incumbent was disqualified because of fraudulent petitions.”

Meanwhile, there have been rumblings that Jocelyn Benson, the interim dean at Wayne State University’s law school, might also make a run for the 11th District.

Sources told the Detroit Free Press last week that Benson, a Democrat, is considering campaigning for the congressional seat.

- Melanie Kruvelis, Michigan Radio Newsroom