James Craig, a Republican and the chief of the Detroit Police Department, is preparing a campaign against Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer (D), handing the GOP a high-profile contender in one of the midterm cycle’s marquee gubernatorial races.
A source familiar with the matter confirmed to The Hill that Craig is laying the groundwork for a bid and has spoken with Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey (R), the chair of the Republican Governors Association (RGA).
Local reporter Charlie LeDuff and Fox 2 first reported Friday evening that Craig is preparing to retire from the top post in the Detroit Police Department and is considering a challenge to Whitmer.
Craig is a veteran of several police departments across the country. Before coming to Detroit, his home city, in 2013, he was chief of the police departments in Cincinnati and Portland, Maine. He also was a police officer for decades in Los Angeles.
Craig’s candidacy would provide Republicans with a contender who would be well-versed in the debate around police brutality and bias in the criminal justice system, which is sweeping the country following the high-profile deaths of Black Americans at the hands of the police.
Craig has been a staunch supporter of law enforcement throughout the debate but praised the conviction of Derek Chauvin on second- and third-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter in the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis last year, saying the verdict was a sign the “justice system worked” but not representative of polic… (Read more)