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Michigan - 14th District

Incumbent -- John Conyers Jr. (D) ; Running for re-election

Safe Democratic
Race Ratings Key
 

CQ Politics rates this race as "Safe," meaning the incumbent party is virtually certain to win the seat.

 

District Information

District Profile from Politics in America

The first half of the 20th century brought great prosperity to Detroit, as General Motors helped make it the "Motor City." But race riots during the summer of 1967 and the oil crisis of the early 1970s sparked an exodus that has not let up. In 1950, 1.85 million people lived in Detroit; in 2000, its population was 951,000; the most recent census counted fewer than 714,000 residents.

The 14th covers the residential neighborhoods that sprang up north of Detroit's auto plants. It includes slightly less than half of the city's residents (the rest are in the 13th), and Detroit accounts for 60 percent of the district's total population. Redevelopment efforts in the district have stalled and the violent crime rates, while down in recent years, remain among the nation's highest. Vacant and abandoned properties are spread throughout neighborhoods in the city's east side, and local officials hope to demolish tens of thousands of blighted homes by 2013. The city's finances were in disarray for years -- a problem in an area with a large public sector workforce.

The 14th includes two-thirds of Dearborn, which is home to Ford Motor Co. and its Rouge Center factory. Unlike other Detroit-area cities, Dearborn has not lost residents since 2000, a trend aided by a large Arab-American population that continued to grow in the last decade. The district also includes two cities surrounded entirely by Detroit: Hamtramck, an ethnically diverse enclave originally settled by Polish immigrants, and Highland Park, an overwhelmingly black area plagued by high poverty rates.

The 14th has one of the country's highest percentages of black residents (59 percent) and is safely Democratic. In 2008, the 14th gave Barack Obama 86 percent of its presidential vote -- his highest percentage in the state.

Major Industry

Auto and auto parts manufacturing, health care

Cities

Detroit (pt.), 335,402; Dearborn (pt.), 65,524; Southgate, 30,047; Allen Park city, 28,210; Hamtramck, 22,423

Notable

Woodward Avenue, between 6 Mile and 7 Mile roads, was the nation's first paved road (1909); the Henry Ford museum in Dearborn.

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