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Mich. Republicans meet before big election year

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MACKINAC ISLAND, Mich. (AP) -

About 1,500 Republicans are gathering on Mackinac Island before a big election year in Michigan.

Friday marks the start of the Mackinac Republican Leadership Conference, an every-other-year meeting of party activists who will hear from state and national GOP leaders.

Michigan Republicans arrive on the island amid tension between Gov. Rick Snyder and conservatives angry he expanded Medicaid, a component of the federal health care law.

Some in the GOP want someone to challenge Snyder in a 2014 primary. But no threat is expected to emerge during the conference that ends Sunday.

Snyder and Republicans who enjoy complete control of state government will address activists and host parties. National Republicans asked to speak include Govs. Bobby Jindal of Louisiana and Scott Walker of Wisconsin along with Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul.

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