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As Campaigns Wind Down, 11th District Race Charges Heat Up

Even relatives are drawn into the mix of odd stories coming out of the district, which includes White Lake and Highland.

 In the final days before the Nov. 6 general election, the 11th District Congressional race has taken more twists and turns than a Six Flags roller coaster. 

The race started out in strange territory, when a review of re-election petitions for former 11th District Congressman Thaddeus McCotter showed he hadn't gathered enough signatures to qualify for the ballot. McCotter aides are facing trials in connection with the campaign scandal. 

Politico.com reported Nov. 1 that the brother of Republican candidate Kerry Bentivolio told Michigan Information and Research Service (MIRS), a subscription-based news service, that his brother is "mentally unbalanced". Phillip Bentivolio also claims his brother owes him $20,000; Politico.com quotes Kerry Bentivolio as saying his brother has “serious mental issues.”

Bentivolio's campaign recently posted a news release on his website criticizing Democratic opponent Dr. Syed Taj of "spamming" a group of Oakwood health care system physicians with a letter signed by, among others, "David Green, Detroit chairman of Democratic Socialists of America, a group that claims to be the largest socialist organization in America and an open supporter of single payer schemes."

In an Oct. 29 article in The Oakland Press, Taj's campaign accused Republican National Committee member Dave Agema of making "racial and religious slurs," after Agema referred to Taj as having "ties to Islamic extremism," a reference to a donation Taj, a Muslim, received from Washington-based CAIR, the Council on American-Islamic Relations, a Washington-based Muslim advocacy group. CAIR's website includes a section rebutting the terrorism claims. 

What do you think about these kinds of issues being raised at the tail end of political campaigns? Tell us in the comments. 

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