Jun 20, 2010

Hansen Clarke takes early lead

State Sen. Hansen Clarke, D-Detroit, has taken an early lead in his bid to replace Carolyn Cheeks-Kilpatrick in Michigan’s 13th District seat in the U.S. Congress and restore some integrity to the seat.

Two of the state’s top political consultants and pundits, Mark Grebner of Practical Political Consulting and Bill Ballenger of Inside Michigan Politics, conducted a poll that gives Clarke a 27 to 19 percent lead over the incumbent and mother of former Detroit Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick, according to the Detroit Free Press.

Grebner told the Free Press the poll sample is too small to draw strong conclusions - only 137 responses that was done by automated phone call - but it gave the many people who have stepped up to volunteer for the Clarke campaign something else to celebrate Saturday at the grand opening of Clarke’s campaign headquarters.

Clarke served three terms in the House and two terms in the Senate. His Senate District represents most of the east side of Detroit, as does the 13th Congressional District. The 13th Congressional District also includes the Downriver communities of Lincoln Park, Ecorse, River Rouge and Wyandotte.

Clarke serves as the minority vice-chair of the Health Policy Committee and the Commerce and Tourism Committee. He also serves on the Judiciary Committee, the Banking and Financial Institutions Committee and the Government Operations and Reform Committee. Clarke grew up from humble beginnings in a working class neighborhood on Detroit's lower east side to attend an Ivy League university and become an attorney. He earned a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree at Cornell University, and he graduated from Georgetown University Law School. After he received his law degree he returned to Michigan to practice law. He was elected to his first of three terms in the Michigan House in 1990.

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