States & Candidates

States can change the direction of our country.

Michigan

2020 Overview

Future Now Fund helped to flip two new seats in the House while defending all six endorsees who flipped seats in 2018. Unfortunately, two incumbent losses in seats that Trump carried means that the balance of power remains the same in Lansing.

Because of partisan gerrymandering, Democrats won a majority of votes in State House elections but ended up with 47% of the seats. In 2021-2022, an independent commission will draw state legislative maps that will govern for the next decade. 

Michigan went from having ten Democrats in seats Trump carried to just three, including two-time FNF-endorsee Jim Haadsma, who did 5% better than Biden in his Battle Creek District.

2020 Election Highlights

  • Our six FNF-endorsed incumbents from 2018 — Representatives Padma Kuppa, Mari Manoogian, Angela Witwer, Laurie Pohutsky, Matt Koleszar, and Jim Haadsma — all held their seats. Two of our endorsed challengers — Representatives Christine Morse and Kelly Breen — flipped seats to add to a total of eight victories in Michigan. 
  • Two-time FNF-endorsee Representative Laurie Pohutsky held on to her seat by 237 votes. She knocked on over 10,000 doors, and it appears that every one of them mattered. 
  • Representative Christine Morse and Kelly Breen’s critical flips ensured that the minority lost no ground in the State House despite two unexpected incumbent losses. Rep. Breen, who narrowly lost this seat in 2018, won in 2020 with just under 2,000 votes. Rep. Morse won her seat with just under 5,000 votes. 
  • FNF-endorsees Dan O’Neil and Barb Anness both came within 5% of flipping seats in the State House; these seats will likely be very competitive in future elections. 

Meet the candidates

  • Laurie Pohutsky
    HD-19

    Raised by a nurse and a Teamster, the importance of public service and hard work was instilled in Laurie at a young age. After working in health care and toxicology, Laurie brought this commitment to a scientific perspective to the State Capitol in 2018.

  • Matt Koleszar
    HD-20

    Matt is a former public school teacher who ran for office after repeatedly seeing lawmakers pass bills that neglected schools and hard-working Michiganders. In Lansing, Matt is working hard to ensure schools are fully funded and his community is supported.

  • Kelly Breen
    HD-38

    Kelly is a lifelong resident of Michigan. She started as a local activist fighting to protect her neighborhood and ran to advocate for her state’s future and working families across Michigan.

  • Mari Manoogian
    HD-40

    Mari devoted her life to public service even before joining the State House at just 26, starting by interning with her local Congressman. She is now the assistant Minority Whip and is working tirelessly for gender equality, workers, and schools.

  • Padma Kuppa
    HD-41

    Padma is an engineer and community leader. In 2018, she took this leadership to the State Capitol, where she serves as assistant Democratic Whip, co-chairs an equal pay task force, and fiercely advocates for the environment, workers, and schools.

  • Christine Morse
    HD-61

    A former attorney, a wife of a Navy Veteran, and cancer survivor, Christine ran to use her experiences to build a better future for all working families in Michigan.

  • Jim Haadsma
    HD-62

    As the son of missionaries, the value of public service was instilled in Jim early. He served as a county commissioner before running for and winning a seat in the State House where he is fighting to revitalize and empower his community.

  • Angela Witwer
    HD-71

    Angela is a business owner who worked in healthcare for 22 years. A community leader and longtime advocate for strong public schools and better healthcare policy, Angela has been fighting for these causes from the State House since 2018.