League of Women Voters of Northeast Michigan hosting candidate forums – Alpena News

League of Women Voters of Northeast Michigan hosting candidate forums – Alpena News

Oct 11, 2022
News Photo by Steve Schulwitz Alpena Clerk Anna Soik sets up a voting stand while at work on Monday. Voters are already submitting absentee ballots to their local clerk’s offices. The League of Women Voters of Northeast Michigan will also be hosting a trio of candidate forums to help educate voters on the candidates and their position on issues.
ALPENA — The League of Women Voters of Northeast Michigan is hosting a series of candidate forums this week and next week it hopes will give voters a better understanding of those running for office and where they stand on different issues.
Doris Feys, president of the League of Women Voters of Northeast Michigan, said candidate forums are important because they give voters an opportunity to ask candidates questions to learn more about them, the positions they have on important issues and the plans they have to address those issues.
Feys said a panel will screen the questions for clarity and to prevent repetition, as well as protect the candidates from personal attacks.
She said the league’s mission is to help educate voters, so they can make the best decision for them and their families when they vote.
“Forums like these have never been more important because there is so much dissemination and disinformation out there,” she said. “This will not be a debate, just a chance for the candidates to answer questions.”
Tonight from 6:30-9 p.m, there is a forum at Alpena Community College in the Center Building Room 106, across from Granum Theater, dedicated to the candidates for Michigan’s 106th District.
Democrat Marie Fielder, of Alpena, and Cam Cavitt, of Cheboygan County are running for the seat in the state legislature to replace Sue Allor who has reached her term limit.
Following the state race, a forum with candidates for Alpena Public Schools Board of Education will take the stage to answer questions.
The candidates for school board are Sarah Fritz, Eric Hansen, Bruce Heath, Ned Heath, Thomas Hilberg, A. J. MacArthur, Anna Meinhardt, and Dr. George Pena.
Feys said the school board race is one of great interest in Alpena, and in other parts of the country where races are held. She said in her decades involved in politics and elections, she has never seen an election for school board members have this type of attention.
“I have never seen this many candidates and seen so many yard signs,” she said. “There is a lot of interest and a lot of rhetoric.”
Another forum at the same location from 6:30-8:30 p.m. will focus on the Alpena County Probate judge candidates, Alan Curtis and Cynthia Muszynski.
After the candidates for judge wrap up, the candidates for the Alpena County Board of Commissioners will take the stage.
William LaHaie, a Republican, and Libertarian Scott Parkham are running to be the commissioner for District No.1, while Democrat Bob Adrian and Republican Jesse Osmer seek the seat for District No. 2.
Another forum on Oct. 20 from 7-9 p.m. at the Greenbush Township Hall will focus on candidates for the Alcona Community School Board and Alcona County Commissioners races for District No.1, District No. 2, and District No. 3.
Steven Yokum, Charlie Calkins, Vickie Hansen, and Lisa Turek are the candidates for the school board, while the District No. 2 candidates are Bill Thompson and Craig Johnston. District No. 3 candidates are Joe Lukasiewicz and Carolyn Brummund.
Although the League members will screen the questions, they will not fact-check responses or claims by the candidates, Feys said.
“That is not our job, that is the job of the audience,” she said. “It is not the role of the league to argue with a candidate. We are here to get voters’ questions answered and to help them make educated decisions when they vote.”
For more information on the events, the league and how to register to vote, visit the League of Women Voters of Northeast Michigan website at lwvnemi.org/ or find the league on Facebook.
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