(The state's disinvestment in Michigan will continue until further notice. - promoted by rich)
So this week Governor Granholm unveiled her plans to close the deficits for the current budget year (as in, the one that is already 90% over) and for the next year. Cue Senate Republican obstructionism in 3... 2... 1...
"I've been at this for four years, and this is a lot closer" to mutual agreement than in the past, said Matt Marsden, spokesman for Senate Majority Leader Mike Bishop. "This is do-able."
Could it be? Did someone finally see the wizard and get a heart?
But this year, Bishop said he was "encouraged" by the governor's proposal, especially because there were no tax increases.
Oh. Wonderful. The Democrats have figured out that the easiest way to end a disagreement is to just completely give into the other side.
We discussed the underage drinking by College Republicans provided by the Mike Cox, Mike Bouchard, and Bill Schuette campaigns up at their latest conference on Mackinac Island, and Republican Michigander was able to provide us with a first-hand account since he was in attendance. It also brought up an interesting discussion about the role of bloggers vs. journalists in reporting information, which I'm sure Eric B. would have a thing or two to say about it, given his career.
Other fodder included the budget currently being held hostage by Mike Bishop (R-Hair Gel) and it inspired a lively debate about the legislative process, and the legitimacy (or not) of what Bishop was doing, and the roles that Governor Granholm and Andy Dillon play in it all.
We ended the segment with a talk about the upcoming gubernatorial race. Personally, my favorite part was the mention by both Republican Michigander and Wes that the leading Republican candidates are just one giant mess. Wes mentioned Mike Cox's well-known martial infidelities, and the problems Bouchard (and the rest of the lot) has on name identification, and Hoekstra, well he didn't even really come up.
Either way, we all had fun with the lively debate, and I hope that it entertains and informs those who watch. Many thanks to Tim Skubick for having us on once again!
If the future of American manufacturing lies in green industries, the Michigan governor's pursuit of jobs offers a cautionary tale.
I truly hope that something comes out of the MGA meeting, and I appreciate the Governor's ongoing efforts to bring clean energy jobs to Michigan. (Heaven knows we need 'em.)
Realistically, though, she can't do it all by herself.
A company considering a move to our state would be understandably put off by Lansing's non-stop infighting, our chronic unemployment, a crumbling infrastructure, and the low literacy level of our workforce.
Apparently a Republican-written white paper spelling out their demise over the next couple years wasn't bad enough, but the snowball just keeps rolling down the hill, and growing in size.
WXYZ TV (Channel 7 out of Detroit) just released the results of a poll about potential gubernatorial candidates, and continues to reinforce what Democrats, Republicans, and the public all know - Republicans are weak, really weak.
Among Democrats, in an open-ended question without hearing the list of Democratic candidates, if the primary election were held today, the leading candidate would be Lieutenant Governor John Cherry, who is polling at 9%. The second most popular candidate is US Senator Debbie Stabenow, who polls at 5%, followed by Governor Jennifer Granholm at 3%. However, Governor Granholm is term-limited, and cannot run again.
This is great news for Cherry, as Stabenow has already announced that she is not running in the 2010 gubernatorial race, giving Cherry the definitive lead. He also does better than anyone of any of the announced or even remotely likely Democratic candidates for Governor, and is either winning or within the margin of error with all the Republicans he's matched up with.
And what about those Republicans, you ask? Well, besides duking it out amongst themselves with very little flair or notability, there's also some telling items, namely that Rick Snyder, who may be seen as some as the dark horse in the race, didn't even garner enough points to pull a single percentage point.
Again with the usual caveat - it's only May of 2009. There's a lot of time between now and November of 2010, but it's doubtful that the Republicans can make up that much ground with their entire field between now and then.
That being said, none of the Democratic candidates should be resting on their laurels, nor should their supporters, but the poll certainly is encouraging.
WASHINGTON – Gov. Jennifer Granholm will visit theWhite House on Tuesday amid speculation that she’s on President Barack Obama’s short list to fill a vacancy on the U.S. Supreme Court but a senior administration official says the event is unrelated to the spot on the court.
What the event is and who else will be in attendance were not immediately revealed. The official was unwilling to be identified because the meeting and its topic had not yet been made public.
As I mentioned yesterday, it's widely known that Granholm is on the short list of SCOTUS nominees, and she's highly regarded by legal experts as a wise choice to replace Souter.
Granholm, 50, graduated from Harvard Law School with honors and was editor-in-chief of the Harvard Civil Rights and Civil Liberties Law Review. She's been a lawyer at the local, state and federal level, and authored legal opinions as well as scholarly law journal articles.
She was a judicial clerk for the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 6th Circuit Court, which includes Michigan. In 1990, she became a federal prosecutor in Detroit, where she racked up a 99 percent conviction rate.
Four years later, she was appointed Wayne County Corporation Counsel. In 1998, she was elected as Michigan's first woman attorney general. In that post, she authored 115 quasi-judicial legal opinions supervising civil, criminal and appellate cases.
Granholm has an appealing personal story, as a career mom who juggled demanding jobs, marriage and three children. She also has been scrutinized by the media and has had no major scandals.
"Granholm's an excellent candidate," said Richard Friedman, a law professor and Supreme Court expert at the University of Michigan.
And to the unnamed White House source who says that her meeting tomorrow isn't about SCOTUS, c'mon, do you really think they're gonna say that is? Silly wabbit, that's not how the game of politics is played.
When word leaked out last week that Gov. Jennifer Granholm's name was on the short list of possible Supreme Court nominees to replace retiring Justice David Souter, the casual observer probably wouldn't have played the odds.
But for the insiders and those paying careful attention to what President Obama himself said when making the announcement, they're feeling pretty confident.
Now, the process of selecting someone to replace Justice Souter is among my most serious responsibilities as President. So I will seek somebody with a sharp and independent mind and a record of excellence and integrity. I will seek someone who understands that justice isn't about some abstract legal theory or footnote in a case book. It is also about how our laws affect the daily realities of people's lives -- whether they can make a living and care for their families; whether they feel safe in their homes and welcome in their own nation.
I view that quality of empathy, of understanding and identifying with people's hopes and struggles as an essential ingredient for arriving as just decisions and outcomes. I will seek somebody who is dedicated to the rule of law, who honors our constitutional traditions, who respects the integrity of the judicial process and the appropriate limits of the judicial role. I will seek somebody who shares my respect for constitutional values on which this nation was founded, and who brings a thoughtful understanding of how to apply them in our time.
The articles in the state's two largest papers pretty well seem to agree with the insiders, and as they say, it's because Granholm's about as qualified as they can get.
Yes .....CSI-Michigan-Asbestos....it is time to bring in Jerry Bruckheimer to talk about the future of Michigan cities, towns as crime scenes and sites of emergency, acute and chronic asbestos contamination and human exposure with adoption of the Fiscal 2009-2010 budget removing all asbestos inspections and enforcement against asbestos emissions.
The only problem is that under Jennifer Granholm's budget, the crime scene investigators get axed before the television series gets off the ground....too bad, I had really looked forward to seeing Granholm in full asbestos HAZMAT drag.
Meanwhile, Michigan Gov. Jennifer Granholm is a leading candidate for energy secretary, though no decision has been made.
Mr. Obama is expected to also soon name a special energy and climate change advisor post and Energy Secretary. Two other people close to the situation, said former Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Carol Browner was to be tapped as the special energy czar and Gov. Granholm was the front-runner for the secretary position. No final decision had been made, the senior Democratic aides said.
The AP on the other hand, doesn't even mention Granholm in their latest story about possible candidates, proof that this is all just a huge guessing game from Lansing to DC.
As I said earlier, this is the latest in a long line of speculation about Governor Granholm's future role in the new Obama Administration. Previously discussed Cabinet positions have included Labor, Attorney General, and Transportation.
Of course, any move by Granholm will make things very interesting for Lt. Gov. John Cherry, who would become an incumbent if he were to run in 2010 for the gubernatorial race. I say if, because even though it's assumed he will run, no official paperwork has been filed, despite many insiders betting their money on him as the front-runner.
Till now, we continue to wait and see, and hope that no one's holding their breath, because it could be another week or two before any other decisions are reached.
It's very rare that I have my hopes raised and dashed within 60 seconds of each other. However, just as I was about to get excited about Bonoir taking himself out of the running for Obama's Secretary of Labor.....
Former Rep. David Bonior, who says he does not want to serve as Labor Secretary in the Obama administration, all but took himself out of the running Friday as a potential "auto czar" for the incoming president. "I would do anything to help this administration short of serving in a full-time job," the Macomb County Democrat said. "I'd be delighted to serve on a board or at the advisory level, but beyond that I do not wish to be considered."
Fate's cruel hatchet man - courtesy of the Detroit News - does in my rising hopes that Granholm would now be a shoo-in for the position.
Bonior is publicly calling for Mary Beth Maxwell, the executive director of American Rights at Work, the pro-labor think tank Bonior helped found, to head the Labor Department. "She's just a very capable woman," Bonior said. "She's part of a new generation, and she has great relations with everyone in the labor movement, which is sometimes not easy to do."
So yeah, he's just floating around another name you say? But I can hardly imagine if Granholm was actively campaigning for the job that he would be sticking it to his own governor. With the current level of hostility being generated towards Michigan lately, you would think we would need all the bodies we can in Washington, D.C.
Alas, my fellow Michiganians, will the Mitten State ever see sunshine again?
(Because the economy isn't our only problem right now - promoted by LiberalLucy)
Governor Granholm, with your years in office dwindling down to just a scant few, you have one final opportunity to cement your legacy as one of our state’s greatest leaders on clean energy. We are entrusting you with this decisive and all-important task which, if carried through to completion, could ensure the security of Michigan’s future, in the energy, environmental, and economic fields.
Madam Governor, before you leave office, please put the brakes on the Michigan coal rush.
In the photos of the economic meeting today, I noticed that Jennifer Granholm was seated to the right of Joe Biden (who had President-Elect Obama on his left). A very visible placement for the meeting - she was the very first person you notice in the video from the meeting.
Then, when President-Elect Obama gave his press conference this afternoon, Granholm was very visible as standing just behind Biden, who was to our next President's right.
It seemed very obvious to me that this was no coincidence. She was placed very visibly as close to President-Elect Obama and Vice President-Elect Biden as possible. A very prominent position, where she was extremely visible in every camera shot of the President-Elect and Vice President-Elect.
What could this mean for the people of Michigan? And, what could it mean for Governor Granholm's political future? Let's do some healthy speculating below the fold...
(Gee, what a unique idea! ::snark:: - promoted by LiberalLucy)
What a fantastic idea:
Take Your Daughters to the Polls Day is a national campaign, inspired by the same folks who brought you the now infamous Take Your Daughter to Work Day. Right now, with women and women’s issues being at the forefront of this year’s election, what more apt time in our history is there than this to expose our daughters to the importance of democracy in action? Take Your Daughters to the Polls Day is the perfect way to let them know that they, too, can exercise their right to have a say and make a difference.
Personally, when I was a kid, I couldn’t wait to turn 18 so that I could have my turn at making the polls shake. I remember feeling nothing but envy when my parents took to my elementary school’s gym every so often, not to lob dodgeballs at opposing team members but rather to carefully select the leaders they thought would best represent them – not to mention me and my little brother – in the world of politics.
Michigan native and gimlet-eyed blogger Nate Silver (who knew?) asks what's wrong with Obama in Michigan. It's not a pretty picture, all the more because some of the reasons are clearly self-inflicted.
The campaign's late start is a big reason. As he explains:
In conversations with friends and family during the Democratic primaries (I am originally from East Lansing), I did not sense much frustration with Obama in particular for his decision to withdraw his name from the state's primary ballot after Michigan moved ahead of the DNC's February 5 cut-off date and had its delegates revoked. But I did sense aggravation and dampened enthusiasm for the Democratic Party in general.
Governor Granholm's diminished standing also hurts, as does the trouble over Kwame Kilpatrick.
Silver also points to the relative moderation of the GOP congressional delegation -- I wish. But that only shows how low the bar has been set in the present conservative era.
The work ahead involves more face time in Macomb, and a general work int he Detroit burbs. For those of us out-state, it certainly means greater attention to motivating all the potential voters in those hard-R districts. In this election even the Dems in mad Missaukee or Manistee have a vital role to play.
In short, there's a whole lot of work to be done, all the more since we are one of those official "Swing States."
After watching the live stream of Obama's appearance in Detroit last night, I surfed (suffered?) through several of the the cable news network programs last night. Like a bystander of an auto accident, the lust of my eyes couldn't help but stop for a few moments on FOX News to see what they had to say about Gore endorsing Obama.
Ah, Memorial Day weekend. That time when it feels as if Summer officially starts, up north goes to Up North (or UP North), and fishing poles, boats, and coolers get pulled out of closets and basements. Cabins, cottages, and car top carriers all get opened up and swept out. Normally I'd say that 75, 96, 127, and 131 approach creep-and-beep status, but that's changing.
This is one of the first years that I'm not heading anywhere this weekend, and many of my friends and family find themselves in similar situations. Newsweek reports that as many as 60% of Americans are planning on cutting back on vacation plans because of rising gas prices. While AAA of Michigan estimates 1.3 million of us will still travel, to some like me, it seems like the only thing going up is the price of gas.
Instead, I'm enjoying what's being coined a 'Staycation' and I'm taking it easy on a local level. While it's nice to rest, relax, and save money, I'm still feeling pretty guilty.
It's definitely not the same as heading north, breathing in the heady scent of fresh pine, seeing giant expanses of forests and fields, and eyeing the endless coastline of the Lakes. I tell myself it's okay I'm not spending twice or three times as much money for gas simply to get from here or there, but it's a small consolation. Because it still feels like nothing more than robbing Peter to pay Paul.
Jennifer Granholm, I'm told, is expected tomorrow to announce -- in Kalamazoo -- a major expansion of MPI Research. According to the buzz, a MEGA tax credit helped convince the firm to expand its operations in Michigan over a competing site in China.
The expansion is expected to create 6,600 new jobs, including 3,300 directly. Over the long haul, the company is expected to invest $300 million, including money in Kalamazoo and the village of Mattawan. The company also plans to make use of Pfizer's old facilities.
"We'll have the largest single announcement, certainly in life-sciences in the state's history," Kitchens said April 15. "It's the largest announcement in my career. It's certainly the largest announcement in the state of Michigan."