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Let's look ahead: 2008!!

by: ScottyUrb

Sat Dec 02, 2006 at 16:19:25 PM EST

(Nicely researched. - promoted by lpackard)

"But it's not even 2007 yet!" Well, there's nothing wrong with thinking ahead. Here are the incumbents in statewide offices whose terms end in 2008.

Carl Levin (D) – Elected in 1978, last re-elected in 2002; Chairman-elect of the US Senate Armed Services Committee; Foreign-relations and defense policy genius; named one of "America's 10 Best Senators" by TIME Magazine; longest-serving US Senator in Michigan history; brother of Congressman Sander Levin; all-around amazing guy

John C. Austin (D) – Elected in 2000; Senior fellow with the Brookings Institution; ran for Dem nomination for Secretary of State in 2002; possible rising star in our party?
Kathleen Strauss (D) – Elected in 1992, re-elected in 2000; President of the Board of Education since 2001; involved in numerous boards and groups

Laurence B. Deitch (D) – Elected in 1992, re-elected in 2000; attorney; former MDP treasurer
Rebecca McGowan (D) – formerly worked in offices of Senators Adlai Stevenson and Frank Church; senior staffer for VP Mondale and deputy director of his 1984 campaign

Dorothy V. Gonzales (D) – Elected in 1992, re-elected in 2000; former state House research analyst; former education policy advisor under Governor Blanchard
G. Scott Romney (R) – Appointed in August 2000, re-elected three months later; Son of former Governor George Romney; brother of Massachusetts Governor and possible 2008 Presidential candidate Mitt Romney

Paul Massaron (D) – Elected in 2000; Hyper-active with the UAW and AFL-CIO, including serving as a legislative director, Region 1-B International rep., and top aide to the UAW President
Jacqueline Washington (D) – Elected in 2000; Chairwoman of the Board of Governors; past president of Planned Parenthood of SE Michigan; Michigan Women’s Hall of Fame inductee

SUPREME COURT (officially non-partisan):
Clifford Taylor (R) – Appointed in 1997, elected to partial term in 1998, elected to full term in 2000; Chief Justice since 2005

ScottyUrb :: Let's look ahead: 2008!!
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Cliff Taylor's #1 qualification: Loyalty to John Engler (0.00 / 0)
I hope the Dems have someone warming up in the bullpen to take on this empty suit.

A government that robs Peter to pay Paul can always count on the support of Paul.

Unseating an incumbent Justice is (0.00 / 0)
THE MOST DIFFICULT political undertaking there is. I could check to see when it was last accomplished in Michigan, but certainly not in my memory.

[ Parent ]
It Can Be Done... (4.00 / 2)
I believe Justice Thomas Giles Kavanagh, aka "Thomas the Good" to distinguish him from his fellow Michigan Supreme Court Justice Thomas Matthew Kavanagh aka "Carson City Kavanagh" and "Thomas the Master", was the last incumbent Justice to lose an election in 1984. Justice TG Kavanagh was largely the victim of extenuating political circumstances created when Justice Blair Moody died in November of 1982 after having just been elected to a new term begining January 1, 1983. Outgoing Governor Milliken appointed Court of Appeals Judge Dorothy Comstock Riley to the balance of Moody's expiring term and to Moody's new term. The problem with the second appointment was that Milliken's term of office ended before the new Moody term began as state elected offices all end just before noon on January 1st and new terms begin at 12 noon on January 1st. Since Milliken would not be Governor when the new Moody term began, it was argued he could not appoint Riley to that term of office.

Not surprisingly this resulted in an enormous political brouha with incumbent Justice TG Kavanagh signing on to the ruling that held Riley could not be appointed by Milliken to the new term. Justice Riley became a cause celeb in many quarters and Justice TG Kavanagh had the misfortune of running for office two years later in 1984. Kavanagh was in the cross hairs and lacked the fundraising and political infrastructure to mount a response to the Riley campaign and he got creamed.

All that being said, it is difficult to beat an incumbent, especially one like Cliff Taylor who will have the Michigan Chamber of Commerce's checkbook at his disposal. However, we also have the unusual opportunity of having a clean head shot at Taylor as no other Justice will be on the ballot. If the Democrats are strategic, Taylor has certainly compiled the kind of record that could cause the voters to send him home to Lucille in 2006. The long term importance of knocking Clifford off of the Court cannot be over stated.

[ Parent ]
You read like an informed Justice Caucus member! (n/t) (0.00 / 0)

Great Lakes, Great Times.

[ Parent ]
Two things needed (0.00 / 0)
to unseat Taylor: a good candidate, and money from the MDP to fund his or her campaign.  In the past, the MDP has taken the attitude that you can't unseat a sitting justice, so they just pay lip service to finding and funding candidates.  I'd like to see the dems flexing their newfound political muscle and show the GOP that not even their supersafe seats are immune.  But we need to start now with identifying candidates and getting them some name recognition (the biggest stumbling block) long before the next convention.  The problem is that our Court of Appeals, which normally would supply qualified candidates, is even more conservative than our Supreme Court.  Is there anyone left on the COA who would be worthwhile for the dems to run in 08 for the MSC?

I'd go on to describe Cliff Taylor's lack of intellectual horsepower, but I'd be preaching to the choir.

I'm not that eartha - or that one either

[ Parent ]
How much money is usually spent on judicial campaigns? (0.00 / 0)
Being that it looks like the only tough races in 2008 (aside from the Presidency, of course) is the House races, and the Supreme Court.  Levin can handle himself just fine, and the DSCC would just as soon die than leave him unfunded.

If we can adequately fund the race (perhaps get the Coalition for Progress on this one, as well as some blograising) then we'd have a fighting chance at taking the Court.

[ Parent ]
Forgot about our Congressional races, too! n/t (0.00 / 0)

[ Parent ]
COA (0.00 / 0)
There are several good folks on the bench at the Court of Appeals, but I bet you that the prospect of running against the Chief doesn't sound very good to them, as kamikaze style campaigns are not usually appealing to folks with cushy jobs and a tendency to wait for appointment for that first crack at promotion.

[ Parent ]
Levin (4.00 / 1)
Is Carl for sure a candidate for re-election?

The end of the human race will be that it will eventually die of civilization.

 - Ralph Waldo Emerson

dem majority (4.00 / 2)
now that democrats are in the majority, i think its more of a sure thing.  he is in a position to accomplish a lot on one of the central issues of our time:  iraq.

Check out my mediocre blog.

[ Parent ]
Which means... (0.00 / 0)
That after 2010 we'll have to find a way to keep the Governor busy for 4 years before we elect her as our next Senator (as I'm sure Levin will be retiring in 2014).

There are a few Congressional seats we wouldn't mind having her run in:).

[ Parent ]
Jenny's next job (0.00 / 0)
Carl gets re-elected in 2008 then announces his retirement two year later, just in time for Granholm to appoint herself as his replacement.

The end of the human race will be that it will eventually die of civilization.

 - Ralph Waldo Emerson

[ Parent ]
Or Debbie Stabenow seeks the Governor's seat... (0.00 / 0)
and, if successful in 2010, could appoint Granholm to replace her. Or Granholm would appoint herself. Something like that.

Great Lakes, Great Times.

[ Parent ]
It could happen.... (0.00 / 0)
If Stabenow is still angry over not becoming Lt. Gov in 1994, then she may decide to give it a shot.

It'd be ironic if she won and we had Granholm take her place in the Senate:).  I don't see her appointing herself, but it'd be funny if she did:).

I'd love to see her take down McCotter, but I'm hoping we'll have that squared away by 2008.  Watching Jackass McCrybaby squirm would be fun:).  She'd mop the floor with him on name recognition alone.  Let's face it, most people (unfortunately) don't even know who their rep is, but EVERYONE knows who the Governor is!

[ Parent ]
Ideas for what Jenny could do (0.00 / 0)
1) Run for Senate in 2012. Even if Debbie doesn't retire. Somebody needs to challenge Debbie in the primary, because to put it lightly, she is no Carl Levin. (I don't forsee Jenny doing that, though.)

2) Challenge McCotter. If she does, the race would be at worse a toss-up.

3) Serve in President Clark's administration starting in 2009. That way John Cherry can beecome governor, establish incumbency, and build name recognition for 2010.

4) Take a well-earned break from public life.

Then maybe she can run for Senate in 2014.

Great Lakes, Great Times, Great Scott

[ Parent ]
Granholm v. McCotter -- (4.00 / 1)
If we haven't already accomplished that with another candidate by 2010. She was a Northville Township resident previously, so this would be her district!

Great Lakes, Great Times.

[ Parent ]
US Attorney General (4.00 / 1)
If we win the presidency in 2008, Granholm would make an excellent AG for the United States...

[ Parent ]
Just worried about his health (0.00 / 0)
The only doubt I have about Carl appearing on the 2008 ticket is his health.  He may be super healthy for all I know - but he just never has looked it to my eyes.

[ Parent ]
2007 (0.00 / 0)
How do we find out what races are going to be in play for 2007?

2007 (4.00 / 1)
local races - some municipal elections and some seats on your local board of education.

And yes, these are important. These seats are farm team. We need every one of them.

"The truth is rarely pure and never simple." The Importance of Being Earnest, Act I, Oscar Wilde, 1895

[ Parent ]
Any idea where we can get the info on those races? (0.00 / 0)
I looked it up on Google and I got squat.

[ Parent ]
Local newspapers (4.00 / 2)
Each municipal board has to name a newspaper of record. The reason they do so is so the general public knows where they can find the agenda for public hearings. These papers also cover the local meetings (twp. board, school board, etc.) The write ups are usually thin, but they are enough to give you a heads up if something big is brewing.

Unfortunately, many of these smaller newspapers haven't quite entered a "tech-friendly" phase yet, but some are trying. O&E now has an RSS feed.

Some communities have local cable channels dedicated to local government, local school board and the local library. Your mileage may vary though - each municipality negotiated thier own agreements with the cable companies (yes - your memory is correct, this is part of what will change if the bill we've been discussing over the last several days passes). The municipalities with larger populations and larger growth potential in the near future were able to drive harder bargains and thus usually have more local channels.

And of course, there is always attending meetings in person.

I think everyone should occasionally attend these meetings just to understand how our government works. Anyone who is contmeplating a run for local office should attend on a regular basis. It acquaints you with how meetings are run and who the key players are (in addition to the elected board, you find out who key staff members are too) and it gives you the best opportunity to follow the issues the board is dealing with. Hearing the discussion first hand is much more valuable than just reading the motion that appears in the minutes.

A call to your local clerk's office can get you the specifcs about the local election cycle. A call to your local school board can get you info on how many seats are up in the next election.

Final thought - about a year and a half ago the legislature made some changes as to when and how school board elections can be held and also how frequently millage proposals can appear on the ballot. Expect some coldness in the answers you get from the school board. A lot of people feel that their feathers were ruffled and their turf narrowed.

"The truth is rarely pure and never simple." The Importance of Being Earnest, Act I, Oscar Wilde, 1895

[ Parent ]
Amen (0.00 / 0)
I think everyone should occasionally attend these meetings just to understand how our government works. Anyone who is contmeplating a run for local office should attend on a regular basis. It acquaints you with how meetings are run and who the key players are (in addition to the elected board, you find out who key staff members are too) and it gives you the best opportunity to follow the issues the board is dealing with. Hearing the discussion first hand is much more valuable than just reading the motion that appears in the minutes.

How true. Good post.

Great Lakes, Great Times, Great Scott

[ Parent ]
Granholm 3rd term? (0.00 / 0)
Excuse my ignorance, but can't Granholm run for a third term?  Fatso did.  On the other hand, a newly elected Democratic president in '08 could appoint her US Attorney General, no? 

Engler's 3 Terms (0.00 / 0)
Engler was able to serve three terms because he implemented the term limits while in office and the term limits weren't retroactive.

And I definitely like the prospects of Granholm in the cabinet.


[ Parent ]
MSU (4.00 / 2)
I'd love to be able to take out Scott Romney from the MSU Board - he never attends the meetings, and that's certainly only going to get worse when his brother is running for President here in MI.

/Sat on the Board for year as a student liaison

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