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Commissioners Get Into Fight Outside Polling Place

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Kim Coonan - Joe Davis (Credit: baycounty-mi.gov)

Kim Coonan – Joe Davis (Credit: baycounty-mi.gov)

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BAY CITY (WWJ/AP) - Two county commissioners in Michigan who are facing off in an election because of redistricting got into a fight outside a church polling place.

Democrat Kim Coonan, who has held the 6th District seat with the Bay County commission since 2002, is facing Republican Joe Davis, the 4th District’s second-year representative.

Police say an altercation between the candidates took place shortly after the polls opened Tuesday after Coonan took down Davis campaign signs on the church property.

The candidates, however, offered differing accounts of the fight.

Davis claims he was beaten to the ground outside Our Lady of The Visitation Parish after approaching Coonan, who allegedly threatened to kill him.

“I pulled into the parking lot and said, ‘Hey, knock it off,'” Davis told MLive.com. “Then (Coonan) said, ‘I could kill you, you son of a b****.’ He started slapping me.”

Coonan denied he threatened anyone, and said he was defending himself. Coonan said Davis charged him, striking him before a “shoving match” ensued.

“He slams on his brakes, and next thing, I see a 400-pound Twinkie come flying at me,” Coonan told MLive.com, referring to Davis as the Twinkie. “These Republicans will do anything to win a race.”

Davis, who planned to seek medical attention after the brawl, said he wants police to investigate. Davis also said he plans to seek a restraining order against Coonan, who usually sits just feet away from him at County Board meetings.

TM and © Copyright 2012 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2012 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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