McMorrow beats Bullock in 8th Senate District; Cavanagh wins her primary

Beth LeBlanc
The Detroit News

Democratic State Sen. Mallory McMorrow will face Republican Brandon Ronald Simpson in the fall after triumphing over her colleague Sen. Marshall Bullock in the Democratic primary for the newly drawn 8th Senate District straddling Oakland and Wayne counties. 

McMorrow, 35, of Royal Oak won 69%-31% over Bullock, 55, of Detroit, according to unofficial results with almost all precincts reporting in Wayne and Oakland counties. McMorrow dominated in Oakland County, but Bullock surpassed her in Wayne. 

Bullock and McMorrow were drawn into the same voting boundaries in the newest redistricting cycle in a district that covers northwest Detroit and the Oakland County communities of Ferndale, Oak Park, Royal Oak and other nearby municipalities. 

Sen. Mallory McMorrow of Royal Oak, left, and Sen. Marshall Bullock of Detroit, right.

Bullock worked for Detroit Mayor Mike Duggan before being elected to the Legislature, where he serves as chairman for the Michigan Legislative Black Caucus. 

McMorrow, who previously worked in product design, advertising and media, is considered a rising star in the Democratic Party after a floor speech denouncing a Republican candidate's "groomer" claims went viral earlier this year. 

The race helped to determine the extent of representation Black Detroiters have under the newly drawn maps, which have been criticized as diluting the Black vote and African American voters' chances of electing a preferred candidate. 

With Bullock's defeat, there will be no Black men from Detroit in the Michigan Senate next year — unless there is an upset in another primary.


6th Senate District Democratic primary

In the nearby 6th Senate District, state Rep. Mary Cavanagh, D-Redford Township, won a three-way primary and will face Republican Ken Crider of Livonia in the Nov. 8 general election.

Cavanagh prevailed with 44% over Farmington Hills Mayor Vicki Barnett's 36% and newcomer Darryl Brown's 20%.

The district stretches from northwest Detroit into Wayne and Oakland county suburbs, such as Redford Township, parts of Livonia, Farmington and Farmington Hills. 

Democrat Vicki Barnett of Farmington Hills, a former state representative, city council member and mayor, was running for the 6th Senate District seat.

Barnett, 68, is a former state representative, and Cavanagh, 31, has served one term in the state House representing District 10.

Brown, 58, is a former Detroit police commissioner and retired from Detroit Fire Department and DTE Energy.