Estes said he expects all three sitting Republican state representatives to pursue the seat because it’s a stepping stone to higher office. The winner will lock up a legislative seat for the next eight years.
MacMaster, a former television weatherman, is currently in the middle of his second term in the state House of Representatives.
Schmidt served on the Grand Traverse County Commission before his election to the Michigan House. He’ll be term-limited out of the House when his third term expires at the end of 2014.
Grand Traverse County Commissioner Larry Inman and former county Commissioner Rob Hentschel will square off in the Republican nomination battle for Schmidt’s current office.
Schmidt said he expects additional candidates to enter that race before the primary election, which is scheduled for Aug. 5.
“It’s still early for them,” Schmidt said.