Stan Grot, former GOP secretary of state candidate, running for Michigan House
Lansing — Shelby Township Clerk Stan Grot, whose sudden exit from the 2018 secretary of state race turned into a controversy, is running in a special election for a Macomb County-based seat in the Michigan House of Representatives.
In an interview, Grot said he filed to campaign for the 36th District position last week. The special primary election will be March 1 and the general election will be held on May 3. The races will fill a vacancy created after former state Rep. Doug Wozniak, R-Shelby Township, was elected to the state Senate.
"The deadline is Jan. 7," Grot said of the Friday deadline for candidates to file. "I’ve got to withhold my comments until after the deadline."
Grot, chairman of the 10th District GOP congressional committee and an influential figure within the Michigan Republican Party, will likely be a favorite to win the seat, which is heavily GOP leaning.
As of Monday, Grot was the only Republican who had filed to run in the special election, according to the Macomb County clerk's office. Democrat James Diez of Shelby Township had also also launched a campaign.
In 2021, then-Michigan GOP Chairwoman Laura Cox accused Ron Weiser, the party's chairman in 2018, of orchestrating a "secret deal" with Grot to get him to exit the 2018 secretary of state race to boost Mary Treder Lang, who eventually became the Republican nominee.
The deal involved $200,000 in payments from the party's undisclosed administrative account to Grot, said Cox, who lost to Weiser in her reelection bid days after she made the claims.
Both Grot and Weiser have denied doing anything improper.
In July, the Michigan GOP agreed to pay $200,000 to resolve a campaign finance complaint involving the situation. And in August, Attorney General Dana Nessel said Weiser wouldn't face criminal charges over the arrangement.
"Paying a candidate for office to withdraw from a statewide election is no doubt insidious behavior that diminishes and undermines our democracy,” Nessel, a Democrat, said in a statement. “However, under the circumstances presented, Mr. Weiser's use of political party funds to manipulate the nomination for the office of secretary of state for the 2018 Michigan Republican Convention did not allow for criminal charges to be generated."
Grot previously ran for the state House in 2014, narrowly losing (49%-51%) to Republican Pete Lucido in the GOP primary. Lucido went on to serve in the state Senate and is now Macomb County's prosecutor.