DETROIT (WOOD) — The eyes of the political world were on Michigan this week as Democrats vying for their party’s nomination descended on Detroit.
In total, 20 candidates tried to make their mark and move closer to the nomination during two days of debates.
Congressman Dan Kildee, D-Flint Township, says the venue may have been as important as the conversation.
“There’s a reason this debate is taking place right here in Detroit. I think Michigan is clearly one of the three or four states that will determine who the next president is,” he said.
The debates were a nod to the importance of Michigan in both the Democratic primary and the general election.
It also brought some of the party’s infighting to the surface.
“Right now, you see the candidates really emphasizing the differences that they have between one another,” Kildee said. “It will pivot, in the not too distant future, to the big gulf of differences between any of those Democrats and Donald Trump.”
Michigan was a reliably Democratic state in general presidential elections from 1992 through 2012, but that changed in 2016 when the state’s electoral votes went to Trump.
In November 2020, Michigan voters will be key when it comes down to President Trump and the eventual Democratic nominee, Kildee said.
“The choice between those two candidates is largely going to be decided by the people of Michigan,” he said.
Kildee says that makes this week’s appearance by all the candidates in Michigan so important.