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Casperson Reacts to Benishek Decision

In a surprise announcement, three-term Republican Congressman Dan Benishek will not be running for re-election.

The decision throws Michigan’s 2016 1st Congressional race wide open.

The first is considered the most competitive congressional district in Michigan.

The leading Democrat in the race is former state Democratic Party Chair Lon Johnson.

Benishek earlier broke a pledge not to run for a fourth term, but Tuesday he told Michigan Republican Party Chairwoman Ronna Romney-McDaniel that he has decided to retire after the current term.

McDaniel says Benishek’s decision does not pose a problem for her party and notes there’s several good potential GOP candidates for the seat.

State Senate Republican Tom Casperson of Escanaba could be one of those.

He hasn’t made up his mind yet but says his phone has been “blowing up” with calls from people asking if he’s interested.

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