Michigan State Senate
Michigan State Legislature
Coat of arms or logo
Term limits
2 terms (8 years)
FoundedJanuary 26, 1837
Preceded byMichigan Territorial Council
New session started
January 2021
Garlin Gilchrist (D)
since January 1, 2019
President pro tempore
Aric Nesbitt (R)
since January 1, 2019
Mike Shirkey (R)
since January 1, 2019
Minority Leader
Jim Ananich (D)
since January 1, 2015
Seats38 voting members
Michigan State Senate.svg
Political groups
  •   Republican (22)


Length of term
4 years
AuthorityArticle IV, Michigan Constitution
Salary$71,685 salary/year + $10,800 per diem/year
Last election
November 6, 2018
(38 seats)
Next election
November 8, 2022
(38 seats)
RedistrictingMichigan Independent Citizens Redistricting Commission
In God We Trust
Meeting place
Michigan Senate.jpg
State Senate Chamber
Michigan State Capitol
Lansing, Michigan
Michigan State Senate

The Michigan Senate is the upper house of the Michigan Legislature. Along with the Michigan House of Representatives, it composes the state legislature, which has powers, roles and duties defined by Article IV of the Michigan Constitution, adopted in 1963.[1] The primary purpose of the Legislature is to enact new laws and amend or repeal existing laws.

The Michigan Senate is composed of 38 members, each elected from a single-member district with a population of between approximately 212,400 to 263,500 residents.[2] Legislative districts are drawn on the basis of population figures, provided by the federal decennial census. Senators' terms begin immediately upon their election. As of 2018, Republicans hold the majority in the State Senate with twenty-two seats; Democrats hold the minority with sixteen seats. The Senate chamber is located in the State Capitol building.[2]


Members of the Michigan Senate are called senators. Because this shadows the terminology used to describe members of the United States Senate, constituents and the news media, using The Associated Press Stylebook, often refer to members of the Michigan Senate as state senators when necessary to avoid confusion with their federal counterparts.


Senators are elected on a partisan basis for four-year terms, concurrent with the election of the Governor of Michigan. Terms for senators begin on January 1 at noon, following the November general election and end on January 1 when their replacements are sworn in.[2]

Senate elections are always held two years after the election for President of the United States, with the next election scheduled for November 8, 2022.

Term limits

On November 3, 1992, almost 59 percent of Michigan voters backed Proposal B, the Michigan Term Limits Amendment, which amended the state constitution, to enact term limits on federal and state officials. In 1995, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that states could not enact congressional term limits, but ruled that the state-level term limits remain. Under the amendment, a person could be elected to the state senate two times. A provision governing partial terms was also included. These provisions became Article IV, section 54 and Article V, section 30 of the Michigan Constitution.[3]


Each senator must be a citizen of the United States, at least 21 years of age, and an elector of the district they represent. Under state law, moving out of the district shall be deemed a vacation of the office. No person who has been convicted of subversion or who has within the preceding 20 years been convicted of a felony involving a breach of public trust shall be eligible for either house of the legislature.

Legislative session

For reckoning periods of time during which the legislature operates, each two-year period coinciding with the election of new members of the House of Representatives is numbered consecutively as a legislature, dating to the first legislature following Michigan's admission as a state. The current two-year term of the legislature (January 1, 2021 – December 31, 2022) is the 101st Legislature.

Each year during which the legislature meets constitutes a new legislative session. According to Article IV Section 13 of the State Constitution, a new session of the legislature begins when the members of each house convene, on the second Wednesday of January every year at noon. A regular session of the legislature typically lasts throughout the entire year with several periods of recess and adjourns sine die in late December.

The Michigan legislature is one of ten full-time state legislative bodies in the United States.[4] Members receive a base salary of $71,685 per year, which makes them the fourth-highest paid legislators in the country, after California, Pennsylvania and New York. While legislators in many states receive per diems that make up for lower salaries, Michigan legislators receive $10,800 per year for session and interim expenses.[5] Salaries and expense allowances are determined by the State Officers Compensation Commission.

Any legislation pending in either house at the end of a session that is not the end of a legislative term of office continues and carries over to the next Legislative Session.

Powers and process

The Michigan legislature is authorized by the Michigan Constitution to create and amend the laws of the U.S. state of Michigan, subject to the governor's power to veto legislation. To do so, legislators propose legislation in the forms of bills drafted by a nonpartisan, professional staff. Successful legislation must undergo committee review, three readings on the floor of each house, with appropriate voting majorities, as required, and either be signed into law by the governor or enacted through a veto override approved by two-thirds of the membership of each legislative house.[6]


Affiliation Party
(Shading indicates majority caucus)
Republican Democratic Vacant
End of Previous Legislature (2020) 22 16 38 0
Beginning (Jan. 1, 2021)[7][8] 20 16 36 2
Nov. 10, 2021[9][10] 22 38 0
Latest voting share 57.9% 42.1%


The Michigan Senate is headed by the Lieutenant Governor of Michigan, who serves as President of the Senate but may cast a vote only in the instance of a tie.[11] The presiding officers of the senate, apart from the president, are elected by the body at its first session and serve until their term of office is up.[12] Majority and minority party officers are elected at the same time by their respective caucuses.[12]

The senate majority leader controls the assignment of committees and leadership positions, along with control of the agenda in the chamber.

Members, 2019–2021

Senate Districts and Party Affiliation as of 2019   Republican Party   Democratic Party
Senate Districts and Party Affiliation as of 2019
  Republican Party
  Democratic Party

District Senator Party Residence Eligible for
re-election in 2022
1 Stephanie Chang Dem Detroit Yes
2 Adam Hollier Dem Detroit Yes
3 Sylvia Santana Dem Detroit Yes
4 Marshall Bullock Dem Detroit Yes
5 Betty Jean Alexander Dem Detroit Yes
6 Erika Geiss Dem Taylor Yes
7 Dayna Polehanki Dem Livonia Yes
8 Doug Wozniak Rep Shelby Township Yes
9 Paul Wojno Dem Warren Yes
10 Michael D. MacDonald Rep Sterling Heights Yes
11 Jeremy Moss Dem Southfield Yes
12 Rosemary Bayer Dem Beverly Hills Yes
13 Mallory McMorrow Dem Royal Oak Yes
14 Ruth Johnson Rep Holly Yes
15 Jim Runestad Rep White Lake Township Yes
16 Mike Shirkey Rep Clarklake No
17 Dale Zorn Rep Ida No
18 Jeff Irwin Dem Ann Arbor Yes
19 John Bizon Rep Battle Creek Yes
20 Sean McCann Dem Kalamazoo Yes
21 Kim LaSata Rep Bainbridge Township Yes
22 Lana Theis Rep Brighton Township Yes
23 Curtis Hertel Jr. Dem East Lansing No
24 Tom Barrett Rep Potterville Yes
25 Dan Lauwers Rep Capac Yes
26 Aric Nesbitt Rep Porter Township Yes
27 Jim Ananich Dem Flint No
28 Mark Huizenga Rep Walker Yes
29 Winnie Brinks Dem Grand Rapids Yes
30 Roger Victory Rep Hudsonville Yes
31 Kevin Daley Rep Lum Yes
32 Kenneth Horn Rep Frankenmuth No
33 Rick Outman Rep Six Lakes Yes
34 Jon Bumstead Rep Newaygo Yes
35 Curt VanderWall Rep Ludington Yes
36 Jim Stamas Rep Midland No
37 Wayne Schmidt Rep Traverse City No
38 Ed McBroom Rep Vulcan Yes

Past composition of the Senate

Main article: Political party strength in Michigan

See also


  1. ^ "State Constitution of Michigan Article IV Section I". Michigan Legislature.
  2. ^ a b c "Senate Information". Michigan Senate.
  3. ^ "Constitutional Amendments" (PDF). Michigan Legislature.
  4. ^ Legislatures, National Conference of State. "Full- and Part-Time Legislatures". www.ncsl.org.
  5. ^ Legislatures, National Conference of State. "Full- and Part-Time Legislatures". www.ncsl.org.
  6. ^ "Citizens Guide". Michigan House of Representatives.
  7. ^ Hotts, Mitch (December 30, 2020). "Macomb County's incoming prosecutor announces shake-up in office". Macomb County Daily. MediaNews Group. Retrieved January 1, 2021.
  8. ^ "Village of Sand Lake votes in new president and trustees". Cedar Springs Post. Elizabeth Allen. November 8, 2020. Retrieved January 1, 2021.
  9. ^ "Wozniak sworn in as senator of Macomb's 8th District". #MISenateGOP. Michigan Senate Republicans. Retrieved November 17, 2021.
  10. ^ "Rep. Doug Wozniak and Rep. Mark Huizenga will be resigning from House and joining Senate this afternoon". Gongwer News. Twitter. Retrieved November 17, 2021.
  11. ^ "Michigan State Constitution - Article V, Section 25". Michigan Legislature.
  12. ^ a b "Senate Rules - Chapter 1, Section 1". Michigan Senate. Michigan State Senate. Retrieved December 26, 2016.
  13. ^ "Senate Leadership". Michigan Senate.