Pence campaigns with Michigan Republicans at DeltaPlex

Posted at 8:40 PM, Oct 29, 2018
and last updated 2018-10-29 22:41:42-04

WALKER, Mich. -- Vice President Mike Pence campaigned for Michigan Republicans Monday during a get out the vote event at the DeltaPlex.

He made it clear that the White House has its eye on West Michigan; Monday's event was his third stop in the Grand Rapids area in three months.

Pence's visit was mainly to rally for U.S. Senate candidate John James, who is running against longtime Democratic incumbent Debbie Stabenow.  He also campaigned for gubernatorial candidate Bill Schuette, who is running against Democrat Gretchen Whitmer.

"America is back but we're just getting started, Michigan," he said.

Pence also showed his support for Congressman Bill Huizenga, who is up against Democratic challenger Dr. Rob Davidson, as well as Tom Leonard for Attorney General and Mary Treder Long for Secretary of State.

The Vice President was briefly interrupted by protestors shouting "Stop the fascist state."

Another glitch in the rally happened when a light caught fire, causing John James to leave the stage while the Walker Fire Department put it out.

The Michigan governor's race is specifically challenging for Republicans, with Schuette consistently behind Whitmer in the polls and Michigan's history of alternating parties when choosing a new governor.  However, Schuette said Monday that he and his running mate Lisa Posthumus Lyons are not phased.

"We don't have time for polls," Lyons tells FOX 17. "We've got voters to talk to and you know, we've got to get the message out."

Schuette says he predicts he will win 51-49 against Whitmer.

"It just sends volumes to everybody here that we have a strong team," says Schuette. "We’re gonna gut it out in the next eight days and we’re gonna win. It’s gonna be razor thin but we’re just where we want to be."

Prior to his West Michigan stop, Pence campaigned in Oakland County for Congressman Mike Bishop, who is facing a challenge from Democrat Elissa Slotkin, and Lena Epstein, who is running against Democrat Haley Stevens for an open congressional seat.

Former Vice President Joe Biden is also scheduled to campaign in Michigan ahead of the Nov. 6 midterms.  He will be in Lansing Thursday stumping for Slotkin, Stabenow and Whitmer.

The Associated Press contributed to this report