Republicans stress 'unity' at state convention`

LANSING, Mich. (WILX) - The party chose its nominees for Attorney General and Secretary of State on Saturday but says regardless of who won, they need to be unified for the upcoming election.

State House Speaker Tom Leonard defeated Senator Tonya Schuitmaker for Attorney General while Mary Treder Lang edged out Dr. Joseph Guzman for Secretary of State.

"This is a very important day for the people of this state," Attorney General nominee Tom Leonard said.

Leonard said he was going to focus on issues that matter to the state. He also stressed the importance of making sure the office is not politicized and making sure things like violent crime, elder abuse, and mental health reform are at the forefront.

"When I am elected the state's next attorney general, it's going to be the first time in the history of our state that we have actually elected somebody that has experience in that office," he said.

Republicans say that no matter the outcome of Saturday's contested races, the party is unified.

"Today is the last day there will be any negativity amongst Republicans--any division. There's too much at stake. We have to come together to be victorious come this fall, and that's what we intend to do," Leonard said.

"We absolutely need unity going into this election. We just heard from Lt. Governor Brian Calley, and his speech was 'let's rally, let's unify.' He said he lost, but that's OK. He was going to support the top of the ticket," Senator Rick Jones, R-Grand Ledge, said.

All encouraged Republicans to show up in November and vote.

"This is American government at its best. Parties coming together to pick their candidates to go forward in November," Jones said.