Lansing — Terri Lynn Land resigned from the Republican National Committee on Friday, saying she wants to focus on her campaign for the U.S. Senate.
The former Michigan secretary of state is expected to go against Democratic U.S. Rep. Gary Peters in the November election to replace U.S. Sen. Carl Levin. He is not seeking re-election after 36 years in the Senate.
Land turned in her resignation Friday afternoon. She was elected for a four-year term to the national committee in 2012. Land originally said she would continue as state committeewoman while campaigning.
She told the media on Friday that she more recently had decided to leave her party post after the August primary election to give all of her attention to the general election. But with it looking like there will be no primary, she said the “timing makes sense” to resign now.
The Michigan Democratic Party, which has been accusing her of improperly coordinating her campaign effort with “outside groups,” including the RNC, seized on the resignation as evidence of its claims.
Party spokesman Josh Pugh issued a statement calling the departure “a desperate attempt to conceal her illegal coordination with the RNC.” The Land campaign didn’t respond to a request for comment.
Michigan Republican Party Chairman Bobby Schostak said the party is saddened by Land’s decision but supports it.
“Terri Lynn Land is a strong candidate, and more importantly the best person to represent Michigan in the U.S. Senate,” Schostak said.
Detroit News Staff Writer Gary Heinlein contributed.