The 37th state senate district will have a Democratic primary race on August 5. Two candidates are running to be the Democratic Party nominee.
Jimmy Schmidt of Central Lake graduated from Fenton High School in 1964. Business experience includes operating a Black Angus ranch and an apple orchard of 467 apple trees which he planted with his father. For college Schmidt attended Mott Community College wher he earned an associates degree in 1968, From there he attended Henry Ford Technical Trade School where he earned journeyman in tool and dye. Jimmy Schmidt attended Detroit College of Business and Baker College in Flint, completing a degree in accounting in 1992. He also holds a paralegal degree which he earned from Northwestern Michigan College in 2007. Schmidt has worked in the military sector, industrial machinery. The Schmidt Foundation is a nonprofit organization that helps people with disabilities.
Jimmy Schmidt is a conservative Democrat heavily leaning toward Republican Ideals. His values include family first, integrity matters, justice should prevail, service above self, honesty is a given, and humility is a gift. On the issues Schmidt supports eliminating personal property taxes and the state sales tax and replace it with a goods and services tax. Each senior citizen should receive a check from the state for $167.00 per month. He also supports alternative sources of energy such as wood chip burning. He also wants to revise the agreement with Ontario that currently only allows only three of the ten generators at Sault Power and Electric to operate, and allow all ten to generate power. Jimmy Schmidt wants a double wall on the Enbridge Pipeline under the Mackinac Bridge. Finally, Schmidt will work in Lansing for a light rail passenger train to be constructed from Grand Rapids, to Lansing and Ann Arbor, then north to Traverse City, Petoskey and Mackinac City by 2016.
For more information on Jimmy Schmidt, you can visit his website.
The second Democratic candidate for the 37th state senate is Dr. Phil Bellfy. A resident of Sault Ste. Marie, his family has lived in the area for ten generations. Dr. Bellfy is an environmentalist first, and he wants to be the next state senator representing the 37th district in order to fight to protect the environment in the eastern Upper Peninsula. He attended Lake Superior State on the GI Bill and earned a Bachelor’s in Psychology. From Michigan State University he holds a Master’s in Sociology and a Ph D in American Studies. Colleges Bellfy has taught at include Lake State, Bay Mills Community College, Wayne State and Michigan State, where he retired from teaching in 2012.
Dr. Bellfy’s main issues are the environment, jobs, and energy. His work in environmentalism spans 40 years and he has worked with Native American tribes, at international, national, state, and local levels promoting important environmental issues. There are many things threatening Northern Michigan’s environment, the Enbridge Pipeline under the Mackinac Bridge; fracking in the northern lower peninsula, and a proposed cellulose ethanol refinery that would have deforested the eastern upper peninsula. That project has been scrapped as of July 14, 2014.
Other issues Dr. Bellfy will fight for in Lansing include a woman’s right to choose. Women’s reproductive health care is under attack from the right. What a woman discusses with her doctor is between her and her doctor and no one else, especially the state. He also will work to overturn the very unpopular Right to Work legislation passed in Lansing in December of 2012. Raising taxes on poor people and old people in Michigan hurt the most vulnerable of all in the state. It was wrong and needs to be overturned. Finally, preserving public education in Michigan which will in turn build an educated work force to fill jobs our state still needs. We are third in the nation in unemployment. Solar and wind power would create more jobs in Michigan. A healthy environment provides the forests, lakes and rivers many people travel to Northern Michigan to enjoy. Dr. Bellfy supports sustainable forest management that can provide wood for manufacturing as well as help reduce carbon emissions in our atmosphere.
Dr. Phil Bellfy is endorsed by Cheyboygan County Democratic Party, Straits Area Concerned Citizens for Peace, Justice and Environment, Chippewa County Democratic Party, Charlevoix County Democrats Executive Committee, Antrim County Democratic Party, Planned Parenthood Advocates of Michigan PAC, and Michigan NOW PAC.
For more information, you can visit Dr. Bellfy’s website.