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Macomb County looks to put clerk controversy in the past

MACOMB COUNTY, Mich. – A Macomb County executive isn't holding back his thoughts on the race for county clerk.

Mark Hackel led the charge to oust Karen Spranger. Spranger was removed from office after 15 months for lying about her residency.

Hackel, a Democrat, is endorsing another candidate and claiming that in 2016, Fred Miller had a backdoor deal worked out with the outgoing clerk to win the seat. Miller won the Democratic primary.

Lisa Sinclair won the Republican primary, but now Sinclair is being compared to ousted clerk Karen Spranger.

Democratic campaign literature points out she's never held public office, and had a person bankruptcy in 2013. She was arrested for drunken driving in 2003, and had a drunken disorder arrest in 2011.  

"I've had challenges in my life, yes, and I've made mistakes. But, I've taken those struggles and I've turned them around. I'm a homeowner. I'm a registered nurse. I've practiced at the ED at Sinai Grace. So, I don't see the comparison," Sinclair said.

"I don't believe for a minute she's like Karen Spranger," Hackel said.

Not only is Mark Hackel supporting Sinclair, he said voters can't trust Miller.

"For 15 months we had to deal with that problem. That issue try to figure out all these cases, because that election was rigged by the guy who now thinks he should be given that seat because he doesn't have the past Lisa has. I think it's unfair," Hackel said.

"We all need to focus on our better angels and be the light," Miller said.

Miller said his last-minute filing in 2016 was investigated and dismissed. He's not focusing on Hackel's accusations.

"Over the last couple years we've seen how important it is to have someone with experience and stable in that office," Miller said. "It's important work and I have the experience to do that work."

"For this particular position it's always been about service, and I think we should put party aside and do better for the residents," Sinclair said.

"When you challenge the status quo, the insiders and the establishment pushes back," Miller said.

"I'm a person that accepts responsibility for the things that I've done," Sinclair said.

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