Gongwer News Service
Republican former state Rep. Lorence Wenke is leaving the Republican Party and dropping his bid for the 20th Senate District in Kalamazoo County as a Republican because he says the party is opposed to gay rights and has been undisciplined in spending taxpayer money. Wenke says he will instead run for the seat as a Libertarian.
Wenke’s decision clears the path to the Republican nomination in the 20th for state Rep. Margaret O’Brien of Portage, who has a little-known challenger for the GOP nomination. Presuming she wins, she will face Democratic state Rep. Sean McCann of Kalamazoo in one of the top Senate races in the state.
Per a comment to the site, Lorence and his wife Nancy will attend the convention in Howell on the 17th of May. He will seek the nomination for Senate District 20 which is all of Kalamazoo County. “I have met with Mary Buzuma and Jason Brandenberg and Mary said she would place my name in nomination to the convention.”
Note: According to the source who submitted this story to the LPM site, Mr. Wenke is multimillionaire who owns Wenke’s Greenhouses in Kalamazoo and in Georgia (where he has a major contract with Walmart). He is a former Republican County Commission Chair and State Representative.
Here’s the news release on Wenke at WKZO TV.