Why All Eyes May Be On Escanaba

This is another in a series about some of the heavily-contested state House seats.

MARQUETTE — The 108th district, which includes counties in the Upper Peninsula (Delta, Dickinson, Menominee), has flipped back and forth into the Democratic and GOP columns. And it does so in dramatic fashion, although Republicans have enjoyed an edge here. For that reason, it could serve as the bellwether in this election.


Here’s what the numbers have looked like. (They don’t add to 100 because of rounding.)

2002                                       2004                       2006                       2008                       2010

REPUB   52%                        69%                        55%                        44%                        60%

DEM       48%                        31%                        45%                        56%                        40%

R +4%                                    R+37%                   R+11%                   D+13%                  R+20%

Incumbent Republican Ed McBroom enjoyed an easy (60-40) win two years ago over then-Democratic State Rep Judy Nerat, who won by 13 points in 2008. She had been to this dance before. Nerat suffered a 11-point loss to an incumbent Republican Tom Casperson in 2006. Nerat ran again this year, but narrowly lost to challenger Sharon Gray in the August primary by 93 votes, out of more than 5,700 votes cast. McBroom is a longtime dairy farmer. Gray is a CPA from Delta County.  This November’s results could explain if the district is actually a Republican district, or if 2008 was an unusually lucky year for the Dems.

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