By Jon King /

One of the four Republicans vying to replace 8th District Democrat Elissa Slotkin has received an endorsement from Livingston County Sheriff Mike Murphy.

Citing Paul Junge’s experience as a deputy prosecutor in a domestic violence unit and as “an appointee in the Trump Administration to stop illegal immigration”, Murphy said the one-time TV news anchor, “will take a thoughtful approach to consider all aspects of legislation and stand firm to support the safety and security of our families, build a healthy economy, and defend our values and Constitutional rights.” Junge, who was given “Contender” status by the National Republican Congressional Committee (NRCC) in their Young Guns program, said he was honored to be endorsed by Sheriff Murphy, whom he called, “a highly-respected, principled leader in the Livingston County community.” Junge added that he was focused on, “uniting Americans around our shared values of keeping our families safe, rebuilding our economy and putting America First.” The Young Guns program is for candidates in open or challenger seats which the NRCC believes have a favorable opportunity for victory.

Junge is seeking the GOP nomination on the August 4th ballot, as are Mike Detmer of Howell, East Lansing Attorney Kristina Lyke and Marine Corps Veteran Alan Hoover or Ortonville. Michigan Board of Education member Nikki Snyder of Dexter was ruled ineligible for the primary after she failed to turn in enough valid petition signatures.

Slotkin is vying to hold on to the seat after becoming the first Democrat to represent the district in nearly 20 years. Records with the Federal Election Commission (FEC) show Slotkin’s re-election campaign had more than $3.7 million in cash on hand as of March 31st. That is more than nine times the amount of money on hand for Junge, who is tops in fundraising among those in the race to unseat Slotkin. His campaign is mostly self-financed with about $408,000 on hand.