Representative Kim LaSata elected to state senate in district 21

Tuesday night state Representative Kim LaSata held a consistent lead in the polls over her Democratic opponent, Ian Haight, winning by roughly 20% margin.

LaSata was elected to Michigan’s 79th state house district in 2016. During her tenure in the state house she served on the House Committee on Appropriations, the Appropriations Subcommittee on Higher Education, for which she was the chairwoman, the Appropriations Subcommittee on General Government, for which she was the vice chair, and the Agriculture and Rural Development and Human Services Appropriations Subcommittees. She’s championed herself as a “conservative voice.

“My main reason for running was that it is a conservative, Republican district,” said LaSata. “We’re used to a senator who worked very hard for us. I wanted to maintain that.”

LaSata ran for the 21st state senate seat after Republican incumbent John Proos was term limited.

“It’s a Republican district, and the chances were good that a Republican could win.”

LaSata’s subsequent reasons for running for state senate included a large concern among her residents with high costs for auto insurance, which she said was a number one issue both in her 2016 house race and 2018 senate race. The condition of Michigan roads was another concern for LaSata’s constituents, but she assured both as a candidate and state house representative that by 2022 the state’s roads would be in nearly full repair.

LaSata credited much of her victory to placing herself in the communities in her senate district. Door to door knocking, holding coffee hours, meeting with community organizers and municipal leadership, and getting to know her constituents was the same strategy she used in 2016 to win her position in the state house.

While much of the country was anticipating a blue sweep, LaSata didn’t anticipate such a sweep for the Michigan legislature, though she was unsurprised by Gretchen Whitmer’s victory over Bill Schuette in the gubernatorial race. She hopes the Republican dominated legislature will work will with a Democratic governor.

“It’ll have to work both ways,” said LaSata. “People that go to Lansing to represent others need to realize why they’re there. They’re there to represent constituents and the state.”

Where LaSata was vocal about her conservative roots, Haight advertised himself as a balanced, unbought, middle ground Democrat. He was vocal about his constitutional beliefs, and built a platform on the core values of the Declaration of Independence. (Life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.) With a teaching certificate himself, and a job at Berrien RESA, Haight was discouraged by former Governor Snyder’s cuts to education.

Haight was unavailable for comment, but LaSata was pleased that there wasn’t mean politics in their senate race.

LaSata plans to bring her experience in the state house to the state senate floor to continue the progress of her predecessor, and to continue representing the citizens of Southwest Michigan.

Cass County

Two killed in Cass County house fire

Edwardsburg

Facebook matching offers ESC new opportunity on Giving Tuesday

Business

Sister Lakes Brewing Company to open Town Hall event space

Cassopolis

Cassopolis set to take a Christmas Cruise

Cassopolis

Village of Cassopolis approves resolution to co-sign EDA Grant for MEC

Business

Cassopolis manufacturer donates to ACTION Ministries

Cass County

Woodlands receives grant to provide support to inmates facing addiction

Education

Niles fine arts teacher awarded grant

Dowagiac

Dowagiac nonprofit donates Thanksgiving baskets to families in need

Giving

Drive-up Thanksgiving event serves 300

Cass County

Police investigating suspicious death of 29-year-old found in vehicle

Berrien County

Berrien County Farm Bureau donates turkeys to families in need

Berrien County

LMC continues remote delivery options for spring semester

Berrien County

23 animals adopted during Honor Credit Union’s Adoption Days at Berrien County Animal Control

Berrien County

Holidays, COVID-19 pose mental health stresses, experts say

News

Hometown Christmas at Amtrak Deport canceled

Berrien County

Niles MSP Post welcomes new commander

DEVELOPING NEWS

Niles native shot during altercation with New Mexico police

Dowagiac

Pokagon Band, Four Winds Casinos donate food to families in need

Berrien County

COVID-19 UPDATE: Berrien, Van Buren counties report additional COVID-19 deaths

News

City finalizing plans on outdoor dining district

Cass County

Cass County Chief Judge receives lifetime achievement award from the Michigan Supreme Court

Business

Dowagiac restaurants rely on alternative service options to make ends meet

Cassopolis

Cass County Medical Care Facility staff boost spirits amid COVID-19