Robert Davis, a civic watchdog who has repeatedly sued state and local governments, is challenging Wayne County Commissioner Kevin McNamara’s candidacy for county executive.
In a letter to the Wayne County Elections Commission, the Highland Park activist said a seated county official can’t run for another office, the Detroit Free Press reports.
He cited Michigan Compiled Laws Chapter 46.3, which says:
“A member of the county board of commissioners of a county, while a member of the board, is not eligible for election to any other county office or position, the election of which is within the jurisdiction of the county board of commissioners.”
McNamara is one of several Democratic candidates who have papers for the job, currently held by Robert A. Ficano, who is seeking a fourth term. Also on the ballot are:
- Former Wayne County Sheriff Warren Evans
- Inkster Police Chief Hilton Napoleon, brother of Wayne County Sheriff Benny Napoleon
- Westland Mayor Bill Wild
- State Rep. Phil Cavanagh, D-Redford Township
- Detroit Public Schools board president LaMar Lemmons
- Former state Rep. Bettie Cook Scott
- Christopher Wojtocicz (son of Wayne County Treasurer Raymond Wojtowicz)
- Fred Bolden of Detroit,
- John Dalton of Livonia
- Daniel Wenderlich of Livonia
- Adam Adamski of Wayne
- Russell Leviska of Westland
- Sigmunt John Szczepkowski Jr. of Detroit
Davis said there may be issues that prohibit several of the candidates from running, but told the Free Press McNamara’s problems are “the most clear-cut.”
Davis has been successful in several of his lawsuits, including a challenge to Detroit Mayor Mike Duggan’s candidacy. He claimed in a lawsuit that Duggan hadn’t lived in the city long enough before he announced his candidacy. Duggan ran as a write-in candidate and won.
Given the activist’s success in getting Duggan kicked off the ballot, McNamara’s campaign operatives are taking the challenge seriously.
“Look what happened with the current mayor and his candidacy last year, how they targeted a viable candidate when people were calling for change,” Bryan Peckinpaugh, a campaign spokesman told the Free Press. “Now, (Davis) is targeting Kevin McNamara because he’s a viable candidate who will effect change in Wayne County.Davis is such a frequent litigant that a federal judge warned him against filing serial lawsuits in Detroit’s bankruptcy trial.