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Democratic Gov. Gretchen Whitmer wins reelection in Michigan

Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer speaks during a campaign rally at Michigan State University on Nov. 7, in East Lansing, Mich.
Brandon Bell
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Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer speaks during a campaign rally at Michigan State University on Nov. 7, in East Lansing, Mich.

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DETROIT – Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer, a Democrat, has won a second term for the top political job in the battleground state, according to a race call by The Associated Press.

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The state of the economy is always a big issue in the industrial Midwest, but abortion rights and Whitmer's deployment of lockdowns during the COVID-19 pandemic also played a role in the campaign.

Whitmer beat political novice Tudor Dixon in the Republican nominee's first run for public office. Dixon was best known as a commentator on conservative news networks prior to winning the Republican nomination in a crowded GOP primary.

Whitmer is a big supporter of abortion rights and has gone to court to block a 1931 Michigan abortion ban from taking effect, earning her a national following.

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Rick Pluta, Michigan Public Radio Network
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