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Columnist: What say we make these votes more than symbollic

by: Eric B.

Fri Jan 11, 2013 at 11:00:28 AM EST

Part of what's broken in Lansing is that the entire mess is contructed to perpetuate itself. Partisan redistricting means legislative races are decided in primaries, which cater to extremist candidates. Term limits means that lawmakers have to be more loyal to staff and lobbyists as sources of institutional knowledge than their own experiences. And, simply re-electing the same bad leadership as last year means that we have a House Speaker who might be indicted for perjury ... and he only gets two votes against him.

When I hear the phrase “symbolic vote,” I think of a resolution honoring the Detroit Tigers on a great season or MSU on winning its bowl game. Things that any Michiganian should celebrate.

Symbolic isn’t casting a vote for the person who decides which legislation will or be brought to the House floor and which will be sentenced to committee. Symbolic doesn’t describe a job that allows a lawmaker set the House’s rules and decorum and, as Lisa Brown and Barb Byrum learned last year, can silence a member from speaking on the House floor, for any reason or no reason.

He's exactly right. Both parties came together and voted almost unanimously to endorse Bolger's Speakership. One assumes that Democrats might have done this because they feared an even bigger jerk named to replace him. After all, this is the same Republican caucus that responded to the recall of Paul Scott by naming Tom McMillin to chair the education committee. Still, the job is important enough that ballots cast for it ought to be based on trust in performance and accountability for actions, not because it's just the thing people do.

Eric B. :: Columnist: What say we make these votes more than symbollic
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Agreed 100%. Many thanks for Reps. Geiss and Slavens for possessing spines.

This was simply disgusting.  Bolger had the votes he needed from Republicans; the Dems shouldn't have been a party to this senseless theater.  There is absolutely no more they could have been punished by stating their disapproval, and I'm tired of folks doing things simply because that's the way they've been done.

Geiss and Slavens should be celebrated to the heavens for  this vote.  And, Winnnie Brinks has set out this session on a very bad step.  The very legislator that can speak directly to this sh%t, and whose entire campaign was based on this, and she gives a vote to Bolger?  I guess she's thanking him for making her possible.  **eye roll**

Yes, this shows everything wrong with Lansing and politics in general.  I hope with all the hope in the world that Bolger is indicted, now.  

I've never heard of the minority members of a legislative body in the U.S. voting for the majority's choice for speaker. You can be sure every Dem in the U.S. house voted for Pelosi and not Boehner.

I hate these Kumbaya moments on the first day. From the first day of the session, the Dems should be drawing contrasts. Not being obnoxious, necessarily, but drawing contrasts with the Reps.

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