What to expect on your August primary ballot

By: Jonathan Shead | Farmington Press | Published July 27, 2020

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FARMINGTON/HILLS — Voters in Farmington and Farmington Hills can expect to see a number of national, state, county and local races on their upcoming Aug. 4 primary ballot.


National races
Voters in Farmington will decide on the Republican nominee to run for representative of U.S. House District 11: Frank Acosta, Kerry Bentivolio, Eric S. Esshaki, Carmelita Greco and Whittney Williams. The winner of that race will face Democratic incumbent Haley Stevens in November.

Voters in Farmington Hills will decide party candidates for U.S. House District 14, choosing between Democratic incumbent Brenda Lawrence and challenger Terrance Morrison, and among  Republicans Daryle F. Houston and Robert Vance Patrick.


Michigan races
Farmington and Farmington Hills voters will vote on who they would like to run for state House District 37 in November.

The Democratic candidates are current Farmington Hills City Council members Michael Bridges and Samantha Steckloff, as well as former Farmington Hills City Council member Randy Bruce.

Republican Mitch Swoboda is running unopposed.


County races
For the county’s highest elected office, county executive, Democratic incumbent David Coulter is facing off against current county Treasurer Andy Meisner. On the Republican side, Mike Kowall faces Jeffrey G. Nutt.

Voters will decide who will be on the November ballot to run for county prosecuting attorney. Democratic incumbent Jessica R. Cooper is challenged by Karen McDonald. Republican Lin Goetz is unopposed.

Vincent Gregory, Barnett Jones and Randy Maloney are vying for the Democratic nomination for county sheriff. Republican incumbent Michael J. Bouchard is running unopposed.

Democratic incumbent Oakland County Clerk and Register of Deeds Lisa Brown is unopposed for her spot. Republicans Tina Barton and Patrick R. Wilson are vying to challenge her in November.

Democratic candidates for county treasurer are Robert J. Corbett Jr. and Robert Wittenberg. Susan E. Anderson faces Joe Kent on the Republican side.

Republicans Robert E. Buxbaum, Steven L. Johnson and Jim Stevens are vying to face Farmington Hills Democrat Jim Nash to serve as the county’s water resources commissioner.


In the non-partisan section, Farmington and Farmington Hills voters will vote for judge of the 6th Circuit Court, a non-incumbent position. Candidates for the race include Clarence Dass, Maura Battersby Murphy and Lorie Savin.

There are no ballot proposals in the August primary for Farmington-area voters.


Filling out your ballot properly
Oakland County Clerk Lisa Brown wants to remind voters of a few important tips to ensure their votes are cast and counted properly.

“My big issue right now is that everybody fills out their ballot correctly … because in August, we have more spoiled ballots than any other election,” she said. “It breaks my heart to know somebody has taken the time to fill out their ballot, but because they didn’t do it correctly, now their votes don’t count.”

Brown said voters need to make sure they’re using blue or black ink pens and that they’re filling in the box next to the candidate they’re voting for completely.

“I can’t tell you the things I’ve seen — arrows pointing, the names circle, all sorts of things. We want to make sure voters are filling in that box, not using a check or an ‘x,’” she said.

Brown also reminds voters that they can’t cross party lines when voting for candidates. Crossing party lines will spoil a voter’s ballot. Voters should remember to turn their ballot over for more races on the back, as well as remember to vote in the non-partisan section.

Those who choose to vote absentee this year need to make sure they sign the outer envelope before returning their ballot, Brown said.

“If that signature is missing, then we have a problem. Hopefully, their local clerk will contact them and try to get them to remedy the situation, but if they can’t then that ballot isn’t going to be counted.”