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Eyes of Nation on Flint Days Before MI Presidential Primary

Some experts predict the outcome of Michigan's primary will impact an impact on the nominees for the 2016 presidential race. (Steve Bott/Flickr)
Some experts predict the outcome of Michigan's primary will impact an impact on the nominees for the 2016 presidential race. (Steve Bott/Flickr)
February 4, 2016

LANSING, Mich. – The 2016 presidential race is heating up, with close finishes for both parties this week at the Iowa caucuses.

And now Michigan will be in the spotlight just days before its presidential primary.

The Democratic National Committee on Wednesday announced a debate between Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders on March 6 in Flint.

Political expert Aaron Kall with the University of Michigan says it's a great idea that would make sure good questions are being asked about the crisis in Flint. He adds it would also boost voter turnout.

"That debate occurring just days before voting, I think, will really draw a lot of attention and could cause an even greater interest and higher turnout than normal because the eyes of the whole country will both on the state of Michigan and Flint," he states.

Clinton narrowly beat Sanders in Iowa, and on the Republican side, Ted Cruz edged out Donald Trump and Marco Rubio. Michigan's primary is March 8, and voters have until Monday to register.

New Hampshire's primary on Tuesday is up next, with Nevada's and South Carolina's following.

And Kall says because of the timing, the results of Michigan's primary could be a good indicator of the viability of candidates going forward.

"Coming at a period of time in March that is right before some of the bigger states start voting in March, and so it really sits in a pivotal position and could be real impactful for who the eventual nominees end up being," he explains.

In the 2012 presidential primary, 19.7 percent of registered voters in Michigan cast a ballot, but Kall expects a greater number to show up this year.


Mary Kuhlman, Public News Service - MI