UPDATE: I’ve been told that it now appears that McCotter is unlikely to mount a congressional comeback.
The political scuttlebutt has it that the Democrats are trying to recruit gregarious Detroit TV personality Charlie Langton to run for Dave Trott’s congressional seat, and that a frequent, outspoken guest on Langton’s show, “Let It Rip” on Fox2, former state representative Rocky Raczkowski, is taking a close look at running on the Republican side.
Trott’s sudden retirement announcement has created a fury of speculation in the lawmaker’s 11th District, which includes western Wayne County and some of Oakland County’s largest cities. One of the wildest predictions is that former 11th District congressman Thad McCotter will make a comeback as the lone Wayne County Republican in the running.
McCotter, of course, was bounced off the ballot in 2012 due to a fraud scandal involving his nominating petitions for re-election. He subsequently resigned and was presumed to never been seen again in the political arena.
But the odd direction this “race” has taken in just 48 hours after the announcement of the upcoming vacancy is that several Oakland County GOP contenders are interested in running, but no one from the Wayne County half of the district appears willing to take the leap.
Apparently state Rep. Laura Cox of Livonia (who one prominent Democrat labels as the GOP’s best prospect) and term-limited state Sen. Patrick Colbeck of Canton Township, who is pursuing a darkhorse candidacy for governor, have indicated they will stay out of the fray.
In Oakland County, the Republican names that keep coming up for the 11th District (which has a 56 percent GOP base) are Oakland County Sheriff Mike Bouchard, Republican National Committee Chair Ronna Romney McDaniel, state Sen. Marty Knollenberg of Tory (not likely to run), state Sen. Mike Kowall of White Lake Township and, to a lesser extent, Troy City Councilman Ethan Baker, who served as an aide to both President Ronald Reagan and First Lady Nancy Reagan.
It should be noted that Raczkowski, of Farmington Hills, in the past has lost bids for the U.S. Senate and for Congress, in the old version of the 9th House District, and also came up short while declaring his candidacy for a variety of public and party offices.
As for the Democrats, Haley Stevens, who was chief of staff to President Obama’s Auto Task Force in 2009, which oversaw the managed bankruptcy and rescue of General Motors and Chrysler, filed months ago to run against Trott.
One strange happening on the Dem side is that Elissa Slotkin, a Michigan native and former Pentagon official with a deep resume on foreign policy, decided earlier this year to return home and run for Congress. Believing that a challenge against Trott would be an iffy endeavor, she chose to take on Rep. Mike Bishop of Rochester in the 8th Congressional District.