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The blog comment heard 'round the world

by: Eric B.

Fri Feb 01, 2013 at 11:34:23 AM EST

So, last night around 6:30 p.m., I fielded a phone call from Kyle Melinn at MIRS; and about half an hour later a direct Tweet from Zach Gorchow from Gongwer. Both of them inquired into the validity of a comment under yesterday's post about the state party chairman's race, and whether it was really left by Michael McGuinness, former chairman of the ODP and figure involved in 2010's fake Tea Party scandal. This is the one that the right tried to say was the same thing as Jase Bolger's election rigging scheme over Roy Schmidt's old House seat.

For the record, I haven't verified that Michael McGuinness is indeed the author. I've gotten close enough that I'd go 95 percent certain it's genuine, but that leaves 5 percent of me wondering if it's a UAW account hack job.

For the record, about an hour ago, I got what I would call credible confirmation that the comment in question was left by the actual Michael McGuinness.

MIRS and Gongwer both went with coverage of the comment, with MIRS giving part of it their Quote of the Day. Someone went ashen that Bizzarro MichLib might pick up on it and use it to bash Democrats, but they've already done that. So, we can stop worrying that the rightwing will say mean things. Anyway, for the sake of things, here's Mark Brewer's response to the post in MIRS.

Contacted today in Marquette, Brewer said that he had "nothing to do with what happened down there in Oakland County." Asked what McGuinness' motivations might be, he said he didn't know but to "consider the source."

"I'm running for re-election and at this point I have opposition, but I'm taking nothing for granted," Brewer said. "I'm moving forward with my campaign, talking about my record and talking about what I would do in the next two years if I'm re-elected."

Meanwhile, multiple sources tell MIRS that Michigan's Democratic congressional delegation is spearheading the drafting of a letter that calls for new leadership at the MDP as a way to build pressure against Brewer, who is up for re-election Feb 23. 

I included that last bit because I don't think it's been reported elsewhere.

Alright, to sum up ... Michael McGuinness said that state party leadership was involved in the fake Tea Party scheme, which lots of us thought was the case, anyway, absent of evidence. Mark Brewer responded by calling McGuinness a liar. And, it already hit Bizzarro MichLib in a mostly incoherent post, so the damage is minimized.

It's an issue, and one that shouldn't be ignored.

Udpate! ... The Michigan Republican Party is conducting a conference call here shortly about this. Party chairman Bobby Schostak plans to discuss the revelations.

Update2! ...MLive's story on it.

Eric B. :: The blog comment heard 'round the world
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Its time for the Michigan Democratic congressional delegation, the Democratic state legislative leaders and county chairs to demand an internal investigation to determine if any party rules or laws were broken. Then publish it.

Let the truth fall were it may.

Bobby Millionaire
Schostak is a kettle/pot.

Confessionals are good for the soul. Let's hope in this case it cleans the soul of the MDP in time of the 2014 State Elections.

What a survivor! He didn't hang on for 18 years by pure luck.

Look how effectively he chose his words: "nothing to do with what happened down there in Oakland County." -- M. Brewer.

I did not (and do not) claim he had a part in the Oakland County trainwreck of the bigger effort.

Consider the source, absolutely. I am a broken, disgraced gent with no political aspirations (beyond caring about Michigan and progressive causes) or involvement (beyond my city and neighborhood in Pontiac).

I've got no quid pro quo skin in this game: I don't know who will be running for chair and I haven't had any contact with them.

I won't be lifting myself up by bringing him down: I'll still be down.

I don't seek revenge: He didn't throw me under the bus, I got run over by my own mistakes.

Attacking the messenger does not make the message untrue.

Great Lakes, Great Times.

Noticed That
Look how effectively he chose his words: "nothing to do with what happened down there in Oakland County." - M. Brewer

(Brewer's) Tea Party had signatures from across the state. Who paid for that?

These People Need to be Heard From:
Tina Abbott, First Vice Chair
Lupe Ramos-Montigny, Second Vice Chair
Ismael Ahmed, Third Vice Chair
Rosa Holliday, Recording and Corresponding Secretary
Ramesh Verma, Treasurer

I get so sick of that crap
"The Right Wing Noise Machine™ is saying bad things about us!  Oh dear!  What will I do?  Now I'll never be Prom Queen!"

SERIOUSLY? Who cares what they say.  

This is the same group that calls Obama:

A. A Marxist
B. A Nazi
C. A Hippy


"A Brilliant Manipulator" who is also an "Empty Suit Who Can't Function Without a Teleprompter."

He's both completely incompetent AND he's single-handedly destroying over 200 years of American progress.  

Mistake in the MLive Article.
To clarify: I never stated he directly requested my assistance.

I stated: "When the state party emissary started calling this county party leader at the last minute pleading to help find candidates for their tea party farce, I should have stopped to actually consider the moral implications of it all, told them to go jump in the lake and shouted from the mountaintops about it."

Emissary is the key word.

Great Lakes, Great Times.

"Emissary" is an easy word to gloss over
It's also a word that gives Brewer plausible deniability and a way of not admitting any direct involvement.

sad trombone

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

[ Parent ]
Who told you to commit perjury and forgery?

Communications Guru The Conservative Media http://liberalmedianot.blogspot.com

[ Parent ]
No one told me to break the law. Only my own stupidity in the heat of the moment is to blame for that. Please revisit my statement; there are no such references to the contrary, but your

I wasn't interested in generating a gotcha witch hunt. I was interested in sharing my experience and how that shapes my opinion that there needs to be a leadership change at the state party.

There was a thorough Grand Jury Investigation. Public statements from those officials who coordinated that investigation reinforce rather than contradict my account. If you want to follow the leads, you can start by revisiting press accounts from the time.

If you want to make my informed opinion an opportunity to discount the validity of my statements, fine, but that would be missing out on the opportunity to determine what is happening with your state party.

Who got the Tea Party on the state ballot, Kevin? Did I do that? Did I pay for that? No, I didn't.

Who recruited all of those candidates outside of metro Detroit, Kevin? Did I do that? No, I didn't.

Who hired and paid Lansing election attorney Mike Hodge, Kevin? Did I do that? No, I didn't.

Who conducted, or claimed to conduct, a Tea Party state convention, Kevin? Did I do that? No, I didn't.

Great Lakes, Great Times.

[ Parent ]
This much is all I know:
Whether you blame Brewer, Bauer, McGuinness, or somebody else, the reality is this:

This scandal claimed the careers of two rising stars in the Democratic Party. Three years ago, I would have predicted that both would become well respected not only as political activists, but even as elected officials.

Then just like that... Poof. Their careers ended, and we as a Democratic Party - and by extension, the state of Michigan - are all the worse for it.

The fake Tea Party itself was a bad idea - a distraction in a year when we couldn't afford to be distracted.

Beyond that, someone had to know that there would be repercussions - for individuals as well as for the Party - even if no laws were broken.

Whomever you blame, this is a terrible situation and is not reflective of the decency and integrity for which this Party has traditionally stood.

We're better than this.

Now on Great Lakes, Great Times, Great Scott: Cotter vs. Jesus and Reagan

Its an Idea
Its an idea that, had he been a Democrat, Saul Anuzis would have been expected to execute.

[ Parent ]
Replace "Tea Party" with "Green" and it's an idea Republicans DID execute
Perhaps now's the time to remind folks of when Republicans circulated petitions for Ralph Nader and the Green Party.

IIRC, Saulius was MIGOP Chair back in 2004.

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

[ Parent ]
This thing is getting too be a bit much. Everyone seems to be misunderstanding reality.

-Brewer was called in front of a grand jury and they did not charge him with a crime.

-2 other people were called in front of a grand jury and were charged with a crime.

Period. You can preach that Brewer is some evil guy and demand he should answer absurd muckraker questions (I am sure the MRP will give you a stage if you have anymore to ask) even after a grand jury couldn't charge him but the fact of the matter is he did not break a crime, like Mike thought also. If your angle is the white knight we should be better then that and holding our party chair to a higher standard then the law, then you probably have the wrong hobby.

The Grand Jury
Forming a political party, fake or not, is not illegal.

So it matters little if the grand jury charged anyone else for trying to get fake candidates on the ballot for the Tea Party through forgery or perjury.

The jury was not investigating the creation of the "party." And I think you know that. But, we need to ask:


Was Brewer brewing this infusion?
Who were the emissaries of this concoction?


Thrice the brinded cat hath mew'd.
Thrice and once the hedge-pig whined.
Harpier cries 'Tis time, 'tis time.

Do you hold a party chair to a high standard then the law?

If the answer is yes then there might be a game in the playground you can join where everyone gets ribbons regardless if they one or lose.

The only people I have spoke to that are so far against Brewer are (A) people who are associated with the UAW and want to scapegoat him (B) political hacks that have burnt bridges at the party that think they can monetarily gain from him being gone.

Which one are you? A, B or one of the white knights that think we should lose election if it means 'standing up for what we believe in" (which 9/10 is what the white knight believes in not the party as a whole).

Should President Obama answer for him nearly endorsing a superpac that supported him? No, why not? It might not be illegal but it is "unethical" and makes me feel sad on the inside. I think he should answer to why he was willing to be "unethical" to win. He should have stuck by the loser rules and lost, o and maybe we should run Alma for Governor and lose on our principles to. jesus.

[ Parent ]
The Tragedy
Thrice the brinded cat hath mew'd.
Thrice and once the hedge-pig whined.
Harpier cries 'Tis time, 'tis time.

[ Parent ]
Yes, the entire thesis of my earlier comment is that a political party (and its chair, by extension) should be aiming for a higher standard than meeting the legality threshold.

You want your state party creating and funding other dummy parties? You're fine with that, as long as they didn't break any known laws?

Great Lakes, Great Times.

[ Parent ]
I should also add that:
You are entirely entitled to believe that and I don't mean to discredit that. It is just that after much anguish and reflection, that is not my belief.

And the state party faithful have the right to make their own decision on the matter.

Great Lakes, Great Times.

[ Parent ]
I got your point and I have heard it at many county party meetings where some people just want to do the right thing (which 9 out of 10 times is very subjective). The candidate in the impossible seat that refuses pac money cause it is dirty or the one sided "clean pledge". I am sorry if I wanted altruism in exchange for the increased potential to win I would vote for third party candidates. I don't want to play by different rules then my opponents. I don't want people drawing subjective lines in the sand based upon their "morals".

Let's be honest to start with, anyone getting involved with either the Democratic or Republican party should do so with the knowledge that they are intuitions who's main goal is to win. If folks wanna a place where everyone is held to special high standards while everyone works to change the world into a better smiley place together they might be in the wrong room.

If I wanna be part of a knitting club I'd join the knitting club, if I wanna make my town into a better place I'll volunteer at the soup kitchen, if I wanna be apart of high regarded and respected institution where "morals" come first I probably would stay out of churches and politics.

[ Parent ]
Paying the Price
Ugh. I guess Mike is paying the price for once holding your philosophy of winning at any cost.

[ Parent ]
The person who committed 6 felonies is paying the price. I would find it very hard to believe anyone asked him to commit felonies which thwarted there plan.

[ Parent ]
And I do not claim that anyone asked me to commit felonies.

I claim that I was asked to participate in a statewide effort to create a dummy party to undermine the existing opposition party.

You have every right to decide what the effective and appropriate methods are for a successful Democratic Party. You have every right to decide what 'success' looks like in your eyes.

... But so does everyone else. The Democratic Party faithful have the right to make an informed decision.  

Great Lakes, Great Times.

[ Parent ]
Well dog, gone it!
Let's throw those pesky old morals and ethnics out the window.

But wait, one question....doesn't that make Democrats appear a bit like the other Political Party in Michigan that would pass sweeping new laws in Lame Duck, lock residents out of a Capital building they paid to operate during open session and order (on the top of the State Politico Office holder scale) the State Police to pepper spray peaceful protesters?

Maybe I'm wrong. IDK.....

[ Parent ]
You mean the party that won and got to make all the decisions? I wish.

[ Parent ]
Non sequitor.
They didn't win because they did that.

They won because too many of our voters stayed home.

Now on Great Lakes, Great Times, Great Scott: Cotter vs. Jesus and Reagan

[ Parent ]
that is stating the obvious, IUNewsTalk described legislative actions taken by Republican after the election. They won and got to do those things. So if the question is would I rather win and get to make decision the answer is yes. Let's not kid ourselves when it comes to losing. "We lost because the wrong people voted" is never a valid answer, "more people voted for the other guys" is always valid.

[ Parent ]
BB's straw man
Corrected for grammar and spelling:

I am sorry: If I wanted altruism in exchange for the increased potential to win, I would vote for third party candidates. I don't want to play by different rules than my opponents. I don't want people drawing subjective lines in the sand based upon their "morals."

That's a straw man argument.

What I want is the whole package: Potential to win AND ethics AND a high level of competence in such areas as recruiting, messaging, fundraising...and "tactics."

As with the old printer's axiom ("speed, quality, price -- choose any two"), I can ACCEPT two out of three.

There's no shame in running an ethical, competent campaign that comes up short (it's why I'd back Alma if there was no other viable challenger to Snyder). And, of course, winning tends to make people overlook a host of sins and missteps -- but those sins and missteps are probably going to come back and bite you the next cycle.

That said, the "Fake Tea Party" failed on all three dimensions -- it added nothing to Democrats' chances in 2010 (even had it gone perfectly, it wouldn't have swayed enough votes to break the GOP tsunami); was highly unethical (can't speak to its overall legality, but getting from A to B certainly included illegal acts, as Mike and Jason can attest); and was executed in a sloppy, incompetent manner every step of the way.

The Grand Jury had no interest in the LOGIC behind the scheme, nor its amateurish execution (beyond the illegal acts they were investigating). But those are EXACTLY the questions that Mark Brewer should have to answer.

Because Michigan Democrats AREN'T a Grand Jury. We're the ones who have to decide if the current Chairman gets yet another electoral cycle to continue us down the same road...or pick someone else.  

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

[ Parent ]
Logic Check
it's why I'd back Alma if there was no other viable challenger to Snyder= not worth reading any further.

[ Parent ]
I made sure I rated you 0 which is apparently what you and your fellow troll do to my comments that you don't agree with.

[ Parent ]
I'm switching to '1s' for you
My initial belief that you were nothing but a Republican "concern-troll," here to stir up sh!t for the purpose of enjoying the reactions and perhaps creating a controversy that will get play over at Bizarro MichLib...may have been mistaken.

Now, I have no idea why you're here to stir up sh!t. Gretchen Whitmer -- your favorite "bomb-thrower" -- is out of the running for Governor. The only other things we know about you are:

A) You're willing to apologize for anything and everything that's happened during Mark Brewer's tenure, and

2) You absolutely despise Bob King.

Both of which I consider "unproductive" places from which to make informed statements.

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

[ Parent ]
THAT"S RIGHT I couldn't remember you have been trolling me since I dared to say Gretchen was not the best candidate and since then she got out of the race because she in not the best candidate. The relationship between why you got mad enough to troll me this long and why you lack a understanding on how the party structure works makes sense.

[ Parent ]
A growing coalition for change in the MDP

First, as a courtesy to readers and so I know to whom I am writing, who are you?  I have been off the MichLib blog for a long time and would like to meet fellow posters.

You write you believe you believe that the only people "so far against Brewer are (A) people who are associated with the UAW and want to scapegoat him (B) political hacks that have burnt bridges at the party that think they can monetarily gain from him being gone."

If you get out and circulate, you will discover there are many, many Democrats, who are not UAW members and not making money in MDP politics, who fit neither one of your categories, who are, and have been, seeking new leadership of the MDP. There is a very large group to add to your list.  Let's call them "(C)."  "Cs" are people who progressive, practical and tired of being shut out. of decision making in the MDP

"C" folk are also weary of the MDP's losing record in state
office races over the last decade and a half.  And the "C" folks have the facts to support their belief we need new leadership.  

At last December's State Central Democratic Committee meeting in Grand Rapids, our MDP Chair reveled in how Michigan has now gone "blue" in 6 straight presidential cycles  and in 6 straight U.S Senate races .   In races for national office, the margins of victory for Democratic Presidential and Senate races have grown over the last 20 years.  At the top of the ticket, we are very blue.

1992 Clinton 44% (3 way race)
1996 Clinton 52%
2000 Gore 51%
2004 Kerry 51%
2008 Obama 57%
2012 Obama 54%

1996 Levin 58%
2000 Stabenow 50%
2002 Levin 60%
2006 Stabenow 57%
2008 Levin 63%
2012 Stabenow 59%

But down ticket, the picture is not rosy.  It is a deep red. In most races for state offices for the State House and Supreme Court, we were beaten.  And it is not just in 2012.

At onset of 2014, a review of the previous 16 years will confirm the Michigan Democratic Party has:

• Lost 4 straight Secretary of State Races,
• Lost 3 straight Attorney's General races,
•       Never held a majority in the State Senate
• Held a majority in the State House for only 4 of the previous 16 years, and
• Held a majority on the Michigan Supreme Court for only 4 months of the previous 16 years.

For nearly 2 decades, our candidates for Federal offices have organized one successful campaign after another, regularly winning well more than 50%, sometimes 60%, of the vote.  In races for state offices, however, MDP leadership has stumbled from one election cycle to the next, recycling the same failed campaign model in campaigns for the last 16 years.  

Will you acknowledge that there are a lot of "C" folks out there who see the need for change?

Given the results listed above, can you agree there is a new for change?  

Do you believe we will be better off if Mr. Brewer has another two years in office?  If so, please state why.

This is not about "scapegoating."  It is about results and a vision and strategy which will take us to victory.

- Paul Stevenson
Writing strictly for myself and not for any group.

[ Parent ]
Hear hear.
I totally agree. Failure should not keep getting rewarded.

[ Parent ]
Definition of Insanity....
"Doing the same thing over and over again but expecting different results," Albert Einstein.

Mr. Stevenson, your points made are factual and valid.

[ Parent ]
I don't have the patients to read all this. Yeah when your pied piper is the genuine that was behind prop 2 you are not creditable especially after claiming it is a "growing coalition for change". It is Bob King and a bunch of other losers the pushed prop2 that are now desperately trying to save there heads and livelihood. You must be one of the huh?

[ Parent ]
Not at all
There are many who just want to win elections - that is the reason for having a party.  If elections are not being won thereby furthering your ideals, then it's time for change.  That's the point that Paul is making whether you read his whole comment or not.  

[ Parent ]
Yes, if your argument is your following Bob King because you like winning then you have no creditably to me or anyone with institutional knowledge of the relationship between Bob King and winning elections.

[ Parent ]
Would it be much different then Matty Mouron leading a charge against Bobby Schostak?

[ Parent ]
The Difference
If Manuel "Matty" Moroun led a charge against "Bobby" Schostak...

...Schostak would be gone.

And the news media would probably never dig beyond the press releases to ask why.

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

[ Parent ]
UAW was Brewer's main support also
I wouldn't reject Johnson just because the UAW might support him.  We need to hear more about what he would do if he become MDP director.   One thing in his favor to my mind is he was part of the Obama campaign and those folks know how to run a campaign.  And also don't assume you are the only one on this blog who knows how much power the UAW has on the state party - I was deeply involved at one time, got frustrated at the lack of change and left but I still follow what's going on.

[ Parent ]
Johnson wan't part of
the Obama campaign is my understanding. His wife was and continues to be though. Lon ran, unsuccessfully, for a difficult State House seat in Northern MI. And he ran as quite a moderate, understandable for the District, but concerning for Progressives I would think.  Lon raises a ton of money for his race, but couldn't take the seat. He did however, tie up a lot of Republican money in defending that seat.  

My problem with listing all the supposed successes and failures of the MDP is that it tries to lay the blame or credit squarely at the feet of Mark Brewer. Especially when bemoaning the lack of success in the State Legislature.  

I can't get behind holding Brewer responsible for the SuperMinority in the Senate or only holding the house for a few years because, as anyone who has managed a house or senate race realizes, the MDP has very little say over those campaigns. The House and Senate Dem Caucuses run the show there, and often not only don't take orders from the MDP, but sometimes don't even cooperate with each other. Each entity wants to protect their own little fiefdom, and in the era of term-limits every two years in the House and four in the Senate leadership and key staffers shift. Mark Brewer and the MDP have nothing to do with who the leadership in the House and Senate hire to run things.

So basically I see comparing and contrasting success in statewide races, especially in '08 and '12 when we had OFA here to results in state house and senate races to be useless.  

[ Parent ]
Took the words out of my mouth
Spot on.

I just think a lot of people don't really understand how the basic structure of the caucuses and the tables work. From some of the comments here I would think some folks might think Brewer is the campaign manager for every races and makes all the calls; which as you pointed out could not be farther from reality.

It is funny I have seen tons of comments on here from folks lauding how terrible prop 2 was and how the UAW still thinks it is 1976. Now the same people are lining up to be part of a "coalition for change" which will create a more open and virtuous MDP led by Bob King lol. Do you ever get the feeling you've been cheated?

[ Parent ]
Nothing but straw men from you.  Nobody thinks what you think they do.

[ Parent ]
If you wish, have it how you want. I have seen multiple post that explicitly blame the chair of the mdp for everything from print runs, caucuses decisions and up to including "everything we could have done different or better". I don't care if  Mark Brewer or Santa Clause was the chair at that point, people that would blame the chair for that lack enough grasp on the question that they can not answer it.

Lot of people with their hands reaching for the clouds and their head in the sand. They should think twice before pointing fingers at the chair and look around for a second.  The majority of all the fantasy list of blame I have seen belong more at the feet of the county party, where candidates are actually recruited and offices are won.

I have seen so much of this at county parties where 1 person knows how to use the van, no one talks to voters or really does anything and they are pissed at Brewer because they have a republican in there House seat. Sounds kinda relaxing though it would be easier that way, just blame the chair.

[ Parent ]
This comment isn't trolling
It's a comment saying something someone found disagreeable. That's not trolling. That's supposed to be the way things work.

Folks, let's not troll rate comments that have substance of thought to them. Let's troll rate comments that appear to be intended to only drag the conversation into personal attacks.

Among the Trees

[ Parent ]
Well, OK
I don't mind spirited comments, but most of this guy's postings are conclusory, that is, without any factual basis.

Without basis, he's variously attacked posters just for posting on blogs. Huh? Attacked people for not knowing how the party structure and "tables" work. What? Having their heads in the sand. Cliche and personal. Creating false syllogisms (straw men arguments). Deflecting the topic and accusing people of false equivalents and generally just being abusive. Hell, for that matter, his grammar sucks.

If this guy is a party official, or a staffer, he needs to re-assess his approach. I suspect an ulterior motive to his attacks.


[ Parent ]
I can't get behind holding Brewer responsible for the SuperMinority in the Senate or only holding the house for a few years because, as anyone who has managed a house or senate race realizes, the MDP has very little say over those campaigns. The House and Senate Dem Caucuses run the show there, and often not only don't take orders from the MDP, but sometimes don't even cooperate with each other. Each entity wants to protect their own little fiefdom, and in the era of term-limits every two years in the House and four in the Senate leadership and key staffers shift. Mark Brewer and the MDP have nothing to do with who the leadership in the House and Senate hire to run things.

So you're saying that the Michigan Democratic Party has been UNABLE to coordinate with or corral the Senate and House Democratic Caucii during multiple election cycles?

That the MDP has FAILED to convince, cajole or advise various House and Senate Democrats over the years to think bigger than their "little fiefdoms?"

That a Chairman who's savvy enough to be elected and reelected NINE TIMES has "nothing to do" with our need to RETAIN and PROMOTE "key staffers" so that priceless campaign expertise isn't lost?

Well, OK then. You've convinced me. BREWER '13!


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

[ Parent ]
I think
he is saying you don't know what you're talking about. Do you know how the House and Senate Caucuses work or are you just assuming? Don't bother answering.

[ Parent ]
Here's what I am assuming
That, over the course of 18 years, the MDP -- an island of stability compared to the ever-changing roster of House and Senate members -- has failed to...pick the word/phrase:

Knock Heads.
Facilitate a coordinated message.
Soothe Egos.
Break up Fiefdoms when they don't work.
Improve and Expand the Fiefdoms that do.
Offer a Statewide vision for success in Legislative races.
Recruit and Vet strong Candidates for the House and Senate.
Identify the best and most talented staff, and do everything possible to keep them in Lansing, lending their experience to the ever-changing roster of House and Senate members.
Tap new revenue streams so that Democrats aren't relying solely on unions and their members.

This is not to lay all the blame directly on Mark Brewer. Nor is it to imply he has been completely incompetent. Compared to his predecessors he's been brilliant. And we've kept reelecting him because no one better has come along.

But professional sports teams tend to fire their head coaches after several seasons playing around the .500 mark. Mark Brewer's record has been well below breakeven, particularly in key statewide races (Governor, AG, SoS, Supreme Court).

The Buck Stops There.

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

[ Parent ]
It would have been easier to say that you do not know how the party works and through rose colored lenses you have created an alternative relativity where everyone gets a lollipop.

[ Parent ]
I'm guessing that come February 23rd, you'll be the one skulking around Cobo Center, ducking in and out of rooms hoping you won't meet any of the people you've had such fun anonymously insulting.

Or you'll simply not show up, since you clearly have nothing to offer but bitterness and that arrogant know-it-all attitude I saw for years in Thaddeus McCotter -- but at least Thad knew how to spell and use proper sentence structure in his 2000-word responses to a simple constituent letter.

Seriously, BlueTroll, at the rate you're going, Mike McGuinness would get a friendlier welcome at Cobo than you...assuming you ever had the gumption to come out from behind your screen name.

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

[ Parent ]
It's me. Redirect when you're wrong on the issue and attack the person.

[ Parent ]
The crazy thing is, we're probably Facebook "friends"
See, I'm not attacking "the person."

I'm attacking "the anonymous troll PRETENDING to be 'the person.'" And then, only after engaging you in discussion brought scorn and insults.

Were you to put a name to your trolling, you'd gain a lot of credibility and context for the clues and tidbits in your various posts.

Where were YOU during the Proposal 2 fight? Were you as vocal THEN as you've been since it failed?

Which House and/or Senate campaigns have you worked on? Do you have first-hand experience with Chairman Brewer in those efforts? Was he a help, a hindrance or a non-factor?

Lacking such context, all we know is that you joined MichLib six weeks ago and have spent that time picking fights, making snide comments and displaying a dislike for Gretchen Whitmer and a loathing for Bob King (like he poisoned your dog or something).

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

[ Parent ]
I prefer cooked up internet conspiracies.  

[ Parent ]
That much is obvious

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

[ Parent ]
But yes you're understanding and comprehension is something I value a ton, could I just post my Soc here to verify or is that risky?

[ Parent ]
Heads Up for Newbies.
Just so you newbies are clear on how we do things around here.  We DO NOT troll-rat a comment simply because we dislike what the person is saying, so stop giving each other zeros, ones and twos out of petty reflexivism.

What is "troll-rat?" Never saw that term before.

[ Parent ]
I mean "Troll-rate," which means to abuse the systems of ratings for an purpose other than what it was intended for.

[ Parent ]
A "troll-rat" is a...
... neologism.  I kind of like it, even if it's only a misspelling.

[ Parent ]
But I stand behind my last three ratings.

[ Parent ]
Totally missed the rating part
Apologies.  I'd better pay more attention when I respond.  Totally missed the rating part as I was much more intent on writing.

"Action is what separates a belief from an opinion."

[ Parent ]
If you had no idea about the ratings system, obviously, the comment wasn't directed at you.

[ Parent ]
I stand by ratting people as trolls that seem to practically stalk me on here.

[ Parent ]
Back to the Issue at Hand
Looks like the issues have landed, and, and?

Sad to say, it looks like the leaders are again maneuvering each other in secret. My guess is that the party faithful will arrive at the convention on February 23 and will yet again receive instructions on how to vote.

Frankly, the conventions have become boring in the extreme, substantively useless and reminiscent of meetings of the politburo.

I've seen nothing from Lon Johnson, supposedly a candidate for party chair, and Brewer's comments in the Mining Gazette are statements of the obvious ("We need to retake the House, the Senate, Supreme Court, ..." Ah, yeah, but how)?

Breaking --
Letter from Debbie Stabenow, signed by the entire MI Dem Congressional delegation -- just hit my Inbox, endorsing Lon Johnson for MDP Chair.

"Turn out the lights, the Party's over..."

Thanks for the Update.

[ Parent ]
Brewer Comment to The Detroit News
"If my opponents are to believe I'm to be blamed for the failure of Prop 2, I'm to be blamed for becoming a right-to-work state, then the next thing I expect to be blamed for is being Bigfoot," Brewer said Friday in an interview with The Detroit News.

[ Parent ]
Actually, I blame him for ACTING like Bigfoot
Also, for apparently believing that the title of MDP Chairman is a lifetime Sinecure -- at-the-polls performance notwithstanding.

It's at this point where Mark Brewer OUGHT to prove he still wants the position and can compete with Lon Johnson with ideas and vision.

If Brewer simply withdraws his name, then for good or ill we're stuck with Johnson -- with the only "vetting" taking place behind closed doors, weeks in advance of the Convention.

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

[ Parent ]
Ideas and vision
I think we need new leadership at the state party but it would be nice to hear from both candidates before this becomes a done deal.  Nothing is a choice in this state's party - it's all done behind the scenes and forced down everyone's throats.  What is the point of going to the convention?

[ Parent ]
I agree with you--
but my prediction is that Brewer or no, all the real decisions will continue to be made in advance.

The only recent exception was the Bernstein/Leyton fight for the AG nom in 2010. Now, that was exciting -- even if the prize was a ride to electoral doom.

[ Parent ]
Even then, we knew how the unions were leaning -- and Brewer with them
Richard Bernstein gave one classy concession speech at the Endorsement convention. Woulda coulda shoulda.

David Leyton was just too conventional to stand out in that particular year -- and the idea that, somehow, a prosecutor would be immune to Republican "soft-on-crime" tactics proved to be very wrong.

It is a question to ask Mark Brewer: "What made you oppose a self-funding AG candidate with universal name recognition, personal charisma and a compelling life story?"

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

[ Parent ]
Why would it be a question for Mark Brewer and not a question for Bob King? Did Mark Brewer endorse Leyton? Was there not a floor vote? Did he use tactics to stop the vote?

Who did Lon Johnson support? Would he had stepped in and told the unions they were not allowed to endorse a candidate and that even though they had a majority of votes on the floor we would be nominating another candidate?  

[ Parent ]
Not around in 2010
Lon wasn't around in 2010.

"Action is what separates a belief from an opinion."

[ Parent ]
It wouldn't be a question for Bob King...
...because he was elected President of the United Auto Workers in June 2010 -- four months AFTER the Endorsement Convention.

King may have been "in the room" as Leader-in-Waiting, but if the UAW was the lead in kicking Richard Bernstein to the curb, it would have been Gettelfinger's call.

And Brewer -- who one would expect would have the best political instincts in that room -- should have been able to argue that Bernstein gave them a better chance to win in November, and that even if he was a "trial lawyer" he'd be a damn sight better for the unions than any Republican.

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

[ Parent ]
You mean the chairman should have taken a biased position and advocated for the slip and fall candidate that you liked? So Brewer did not do anything wrong besides the fact that he did not stop the convention and single handily nominate your guy, got it.

[ Parent ]
The "slip and fall candidate" that, without UAW backing, still got 40% of the floor vote?
This was an ENDORSEMENT Convention -- designed from the start to promote ELECTABLE candidates, who then would have extra months to raise funds and campaign (as opposed to waiting until August to get started).

We know Leyton lost despite that advantage. It's an unknown if Richard Berstein would truly have performed better, but considering his brother Mark lapped the field in his race for Regent last year, I'm thinking yes.

Perhaps in 2010 Mark Brewer didn't see the looming problem; after all, David Leyton was a competent prosecutor in a year when many presumed the AG race hinged on crime and punishment. But this proved false; the AG race was entirely partisan, driven more by Obamacare than conviction rates, and a LOT more by outside spending.

Or perhaps Brewer folded rather than tell the UAW (or whoever was "in the room") to free their members on the floor by not endorsing anyone.

Either Brewer lacked vision, or lacked backbone -- and Leyton was overwhelmed, outspent and out-messaged. By contrast, Bernstein's ability to self-fund would have taken away the other side's money advantage, and in any face-to-face encounter he would have mopped the floor with an apparatchik like Bill Schuette.

Would that have been enough to break the GOP tsunami? Perhaps...if another mistake of 2010 hadn't happened: The "Fake Tea Party" fiasco that elevated Ruth Johnson to the SoS nomination. Without those headlines, Jocelyn Benson would have been running against Michelle McManus.

Benson and Bernstein TOGETHER -- the fresh faces of a new generation of Michigan Democrats (an easy effort at co-branding that the media would have used) -- could have survived the tsunami and beaten Schuette & McManus.

Obviously, this is all speculation. But it presents a very viable alternate reality, given a small number of changed circumstances...all of them within the MDP Chairman's sphere of influence.

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

[ Parent ]
The point is
It is not about who was the better candidate or who would self fund, it is about the fact that the UAW can endorse who ever the hell they want. It is not Mark Brewer's or Lon Johnson's place to stop them. Lon couldn't cause he wasn't even there; he did not vote at the convention and he did not even vote at the polls in 2010 so maybe he didn't give a shit.

If you think it is somehow a relevant question to ask Brewer then it is certainly relevant to ask Lon who is supported by the UAW. Maybe I do not get it, do you think that the Chairman should be on stage and behind advocating for candidates and superseding the convention? If he did that then his detractors would say that Brewer gerrymander the convention. It just seems like a silly argument to make and even sillier to try to blame the UAWs endorsement on Brewer and no the UAW.

[ Parent ]
The relevant question for Lon is, who did you support to receive the Dem nominations for AG in 2010?(And again the answer is no one because he wasn't there and did not manage to get to the polls to support our AG candidate and the rest of the dems on the ticket in 2010).

Would you have stepped up and told the UAW that they could not endorse Leyton?

[ Parent ]
Interesting alternative reality but Virg lost by 20%, Barack Obama wouldn't have won the Ag spot. Bernstein dodged the bullet of 2010 by not getting the nod and good for him. I voted for him and would rather see him not have lost in 2010 and be more viable in the future.

[ Parent ]
Apparently he was in Iraq working for a non-profit NGO helping Iraqis install a new political system. Maybe he could have teleconferenced the MDP convention...

[ Parent ]
Do you have a link for that? Ever since he announced for House I have wondered what he did in Iraq because details are hard to find besides a sentence here or there that he was helping set up a democracy in Iraq.

No you can't teleconference but you can vote AV in the general which he had done before but did not do in 2010 like the other dems that didn't take the time to show up.

[ Parent ]
Not much out there on the interwebs about his time at the NDI. I kept thinking if he was in Iraq in 2010 setting up a democracy there had to be a news article but then I found one he left the NDI in 2006 and moved to Michigan. So the whole setting up a democracy thing did not work out and he could have been at the convention and at the polls in 2010.

[ Parent ]
Feiger lost by 20% in '98...
...but Granholm won the AG race that year. So there is precedent for downballot candidates to overcome a landslide.

By the same token, running and losing against a GOP tsunami isn't an automatic kiss of death for a candidate if their other attributes are sound.

Jocelyn Benson's prospects weren't ruined by her loss; same would have applied to Bernstein.

But I think we've probably beaten this poor dead horse enough. Moving on.

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

[ Parent ]

Progressive Blogroll
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