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Being Gretchen Whitmer

by: Eric B.

Fri Feb 01, 2013 at 14:59:23 PM EST

I know a few people were really keen on Gretchen Whitmer being the Democratic standard bearer in 2014, and were shocked when the other day she announced her plans to forego the governor's race. And, she said it was a family thing, and everyone was all, like, "Uhhh, sure."

Nonetheless, many a politician has tearfully resigned in disgrace with the flimsy excuse that they are doing so to spend time with their families. So when Whitmer cites her kids, many hard-boiled political observers assume it's just another excuse. Everyone knows politicians don't possess human emotions or genuine bonds.

But this is really a case of Occam's razor. The simplest solution is the correct one. 

If you look back at what Whitmer said back in December when I asked her about challenging Snyder, it was all about her daughters.

It's worth pointing out that when Andy Coulouris left the House a few years ago, ostensibly to spend more time with his family, he was lauded in the press for putting his kids first. So, why the different treatment? I'm not saying that it's a gender thing. It could be that Coulouris was just a state representative and Whitmer has positioned herself to be a party leader, and expectations are different. 

From a personal standpoint, I don't know the first thing about whatever custody arrangement Whitmer has with her first husband, and I don't want to know. It's no one's business, frankly. What I can tell you is that when you split custody with a child's other parent, there is a tendency -- at least for me -- to be very protective of the time you get to spend together. It does not strike me as unreasonable to think that she sees whatever time she gets to spend with her daughters as sacred, and not something interfered with lightly.

Eric B. :: Being Gretchen Whitmer
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Now we need to move on to other candidates.

I think our best chance is former Congressman Mark Schauer.  Snyder isn't the moderate he pretended to be, he's a radical Right-Wingnut.  Run Mark Run.

[ Parent ]
Who was the guy....?
Who was the guy who was being talked about in 2010. Self funder, lives out of state now (east coast I believe) and runs MLB.com.  

MLB.com? That's outta left field, doncha think?

"The two most common elements in the universe are hydrogen and stupidity." ~ Harlan Ellison

[ Parent ]
I believe it was:
Bob Bowman, former State Treasurer.

Great Lakes, Great Times.

[ Parent ]
Again, she said the same thing when she dropped her consideration for the race for AG in 2010.  The children are simply two years older, meaning very little has changed.  Knowing that you've already taken on this obligation for a set number of years, why even bother teasing a gubernatorial race just two years later then?  

I do not doubt for a moment that she wants to spend as much time with her family as possible, so all else being largely the same as in 2010, that is to say knowing that you can't and won't, why play the game?  It's not fair to her supporters.  Politics is already full of enough mindf%ck$ry, excuse my French, to not have to compound it.

I didn't see that she said she was interested
It was everyone else talking about her for governor.

[ Parent ]
I'll see what I can find
I'll see what I can find, quote-wise, on anything she said, but from my recent memory, she did everything short of actually saying she was considering a run.  What I do remember is her changing the homepage to her website during the whole Right-to-Work debacle to some cryptic bull, calling every camera in Lansing she could find to come and film her through the entire thing, and refusing to really answer straight any questions about the rumors surrounding a potential run in December.  

What isn't in question is that she teased a run.  This wasn't like those movements where some outside group(s) is trying to recruit their favorite candidate.  If people feel played, it's because they were, like a well-worn fiddle.  

But, anything for a little extra fundraising, right?

[ Parent ]
I'm not sure
I'm not sure you know of what you speak. She did not "call every camera in Lansing". What would she be fundraising for if not for Governor? She's term-limited. Some information can be useful before you start typing :)

[ Parent ]
Lot of termed elected will fundraise to pay for junk like gas, legislative trips, cell phones stuff like that. It is pretty common for them to help out there staff with cte cash because the pay is shit. I would bet it was more so to be in front of the camera then to fundraise.

She defiantly teased a run big time, I thought her splash page practically said Gretchen '14.

[ Parent ]
I take issue with the suggestion that she did something wrong. She in no way operated in a way that was deceitful. She got a lot of attention and within 4-6 weeks of launching a 2014 themed site announced she would not run. Very fair and nothing to complain about.

[ Parent ]
Susan J Demas
Whitmer is, after all, Lansing establishment royalty as the child of Bill Milliken's Commerce Department director and one of Frank Kelley's assistant attorney generals.

I think Whitmer is a fine person, but Susan Demas needs to get out of the house more often...Royalty? Geez.

That's Nothing
Tim Skubick called her the "Divine Ms. W"

[ Parent ]
She Sings?
Sound more like sycophants than reporters.

[ Parent ]
To be fair...
Didn't Andy Colouris actually leave the State House and then quickly become a Lobbyist for Dow?  I thought the "time with family" thing was a wink and a nod to the fact that Dow wanted a new lobbyist, and if he left his term early he wouldn't have to compete for it with a dozen other termed-out legislators. Plus it was more money.

I don't think it's fair to hold Senator Whitmer responsible for the fact that she was being held up as the frontrunner among likely challengers. Of the two Dem Minority Leaders in the Legislature for the past two years, how many of you can even name the other off the top of your head? Gretchen was out front because she was the only one making noise. And also because a few of the big issues the R's screwed up prior to RTW (Bullying, Vagina-Gate) were right in her wheeelhouse.She was more camera-friendly than Hammel (whatshisface, House Minority Leader) and more vocal. As an added bonus she drives the Repubs in Lansing CRAZY.The "2014" graphic on her website petrified them. It caused Rick Snyder to play "poor little millionaire" to his West Michigan buddies last week. And it set off a chain of angry Republican rants that reveal their own misogynistic goals.

But anyone who wants to at least shred the Republican SuperMajority in the Senate should be glad that she is fundraising. She will have the time and money to spend this year recruiting candidates and gearing them up to run in '14.  

I am annoyed by people saying Gretchen "dropped out".  To drop out of something you have to be in it, and Gretchen was never a declared candidate.  

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