Michigan County Commissioner’s recall leads to reversal of party control – Ballotpedia News
William Bunek (R) was removed as Leelanau County Commissioner in Michigan in a recall election on May 3, 2022. Bunek lost the seat with 55% of the vote cast in favor of recall. Lois Bahle (D) was elected alternate candidate alongside the recall. Bahle’s election changed the majority of the board from Republican to Democrat.
Recall supporters criticized Bunek for statements he made at a county board meeting on Sept. 14, 2021. At that meeting, Bunek and three other Republicans on the board recommended reducing the mileage of the board to zero. early childhood services adopted by voters in November 2019. According to the Traverse City Eagle of Records, “Bunek said at the time that the United States was a constitutional republic and when voters make a bad decision, the county council is there to make sure it doesn’t continue.” Prior to the recall, Bunek held the seat for 14 years.
Bunek appealed the factual nature of the recall request to the 13th Circuit Court, saying he believed his statements were misrepresented. The appeal was rejected and supporters of the recall were able to collect 663 signatures to send the recall to a vote.
There were 15 recall attempts against 33 county commissioners in 2022. Of these, nine are in progress, 19 did not go to a vote, one resulted in a resignation, two were approved, one was defeated and one is on the ballot in May. 2022.
There have already been more recall efforts against county commissioners in 2022 than in the first half of 2021. Between January and June 2021, 12 county commissioners were targets of recall efforts. As of May 9, 2022, 33 county commissioners have been the target of recall efforts.