Paul Ryan came to town Monday to be the main attraction for a fundraiser for Pete Hoekstra, who is running for Senate. Since I've had my share of thingsto say about Paul Ryan, it was an easy sell to get me to be one of the people demonstrating his visit. A bunch of us carried signs about protecting Social Security and Medicare. The protest even made the Detroit Free Press.
About a dozen protesters, including some senior citizens, picketed the event at the Westin Hotel in Southfield and were more than happy to talk about their fear of spiraling health care costs.
"All I have is Social Security and my husband's pension and now I feel like I'm being squeezed out," said Deanna Tachna, 73, of Birmingham. "I always thought that I was part of the middle class, but with this, there's not going to be a middle class anymore."
The reporter came at the end of the demonstration as people were starting to leave. If she had counted five minutes earlier and included the people demonstrating by the entrance to the parking garage less than 100 feet away, she would have recorded twice as many. That's not the only error in the report. She identified Paul Ryan as an "Illinois Republican." He's not. Paul Ryan is a representative from Wisconsin, not Illinois. He represented my wife when she lived in Kenosha County, not when she lived in the Chicago suburbs.
In response to a wave of negative reactions to his $75,000 Super Bowl ad buy (filmed in California), Pete Hoekstra has tried to deflect criticism by accusing Democrats of “talk(ing) about race when they can’t defend their records...” Unfortunately for Pete, the ad has been panned by figures on all sides of the political spectrum, from national Republican consultants and state GOP leaders to a member of the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights, who called it “blatantly racist.”
Maybe Hoekstra thought shooting a slick Hollywood ad depicting racist caricatures would generate lots of free publicity and distract Michigan voters from the fact that he can’t defend his own record of doublespeak and hypocrisy.
Consider the facts:
--Hoekstra broke a pledge he made when he first ran for Congress to retire after six terms, flip-flopping so he could stay in office for three more terms - before running for governor.
--This isn’t the first time Pete has brought national embarrassment to our state - in 2009, he compared a House GOP dispute with Speaker Nancy Pelosi to the deadly Iranian protests of 2009, and was widely mocked by national media.
Michigan Republican Attorney General Michael Cox is running in the Michigan GOP primary for Governor.
What's his storyline?
"I'm a Marine."
The fact is that U.S. Marine Corps has changed a lot since Cox was a short timer, one enlistment, non-rate, brawling leatherneck. The question is now; does Mike Cox have the character and core values of today's Marine? This analysis takes a look at Marine Corps Values and Mike Cox, his history, background and personal potential as Michigan's next "Marine" governor.
OK, Private. Shit-hot and square? Chinese field day time.
Dump ruck, junk on bunk. Urah?
In other words... Mr. Cox, if that's the premise; let's explore what that might mean, for you, your campaign, and for the citizens of Michigan.
SCHIEFFER: I want to go right to Congressman Hoekstra on this.
A lot of people are already saying that this fellow, this Detroit fellow who was arrested, on the Detroit flight, should not have been charged in a civilian court and given a lawyer; he should have been designated a military combatant and left in the hands of the military so they could interrogate him.
HOEKSTRA: I -- I would agree with that statement. I mean, I think what the president now needs to do is -- the president, I think, came out last week, finally said we are at war with Al Qaida, recognized that, and I think has a better understanding of the threat and an appreciation for the threat that we face.
Washington --The suspected terrorist federal authorities say tried to blow up an airliner over Detroit is talking again to intelligence officials, according to the director of national intelligence.
"We got good intelligence. We're getting more," Dennis Blair said before a hearing of the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence, which was holding a hearing today on terrorism threats facing the United States.
How's Pete going to explain this? Getting information from someone..... without torture!?
"There is no evidence that Detroit was targeted," said Rep. Mike Rogers, R-Brighton, who was in a classified briefing on the House Intelligence Committee.
"It was just one of several options the bomber suspect had," Rogers added.
Rep. Pete Hoekstra of Holland, the ranking Republican on the committee, confirmed Detroit wasn't targeted.
Well alrighty then, if Detroit wasn't targeted I guess that makes it all okay!
Both Rogers and Hoekstra have spent quite a bit of time jumping in front of every reporter they can find to thunder about the awfulness of Scary Underpants Bomber GuyAbdulmutallab's arraignment in civilian court.
It would have been great if the Detroit News reporter had asked Mike & Pete what exactly was the significance of Detroit not being the bomber's target. Was that really the most salient point of the "closed door" House Intel session?
We all know how Rogers and Hoekstra love to talk about their intel cred... hey, Hoekstra even Twitters about it!
They need to stop the grandstanding and actually do some work to keep our country -- not just Michigan -- safe.
Last night on The Rachel Maddow Show, Rachel eviscerated Republican gubernatorial candidate, Pete Hoekstra. I know after seeing this, even Republicans won't vote for this guy. It seems like he should be on trial for treason, not running for governor.
petehoekstraIf press reports on moving Gitmo detainees to Mich are accurate my answer is no. I will do everything possible to stop this.
Mind you, John Engler, Carl Levin, and Bart Stupak have all spoken favorably of moving Gitmo detainees to Michigan. Bipartisan support! And why not? We've got the empty prisons, the remote areas. And lots and lots of Michiganders who need a job.
But Crazy Pete apparently thinks his needs to fearmonger on terrorism are more important than those jobs for Michiganders (or the benefits closing Gitmo will have for us internationally).
Pete Hoekstra's merciless heckling on Twitter can't help his chances for governor of Michigan. I can just see the Twitter ads run against him now.
Twitter Users Mercilessly Heckle Rep. Pete Hoekstra click here to read the rest of the article. Thursday June 18, 2009
Heckling Hoekstra on Twitter If an award is ever given out for the dumbest tweet by a public official, there will be no competition: Rep. Pete Hoekstra (R-MI) wins hands down. Earlier today, he put up this ridiculous post on Twitter likening the oppression of the Iranian people to the plight of House Republicans: Iranian twitter activity similar to what we did in House last year when Republicans were shut down in the House. That's right, he compared the mass uprising of Iranians – utilizing Twitter as an organizing tool -- to the GOP's attempt to express dissatisfaction over Nancy Pelosi's decision to adjourn Congress before an energy vote last August. Heckling Hoekstra on Twitter In response,
Twitter users have been mercilessly heckling Hoekstra en masse, turning his idiotic statement into a full-blown Internet meme. "To Hoekstra" now has its own definition, which is "to whine using grandiose exaggerations and comparisons."
Lately there has been a lot of Debate over the number of Democratic Congressional Districts that Democrats could gerrymander out of the state of Michigan if they had complete control (right now they hold the Governorship and State House. They stand a good chance at taking control of the State Senate while the Governor's race is a tossup). A few people have said that it is possible to succesfully draw a map that would yield 12 Democratic seats and only 2 Republican seats. I've been trying for several weeks to draw a 12-2 map, meanwhile protecting endangered incumbents (specifically Schauer) and I've determined that a 12-2 map would be far overeaching and in a neutral or Republican leaning year might end up 9-5 or worse. I think the best Michigan Democrats could do is create 11 safe or Democrat leaning districts and 3 strongly Republican districts. I've drawn a map that I think does just that, although I still am not entirely confident that we could hold both of my "Thumb" districts in a Republican year. But without further ado, here's my map.
In 2006, Pete Hoekstra laid out the President's and Intelligence Community's obligation under the National Security Act to brief Congress on intelligence activities.
I want to reemphasize that the Administration has the legal responsibility to "fully and currently" inform the House and Senate Intelligence Committees of its intelligence and intelligence-related activities. Although the law gives you and the committees flexibility on how we accomplish that (I have been fully supportive of your concerns in that respect), it is clear that we, the Congress, are to be provided all information about such activities. I have learned of some alleged Intelligence Community activities about which our committee has not been briefed. In the next few days I will be formally requesting information on these activities. If these allegations are true, they may represent a breach of responsibility by the Administration, a violation of law, and, just as importantly, a direct affront to me and the Members of this committee who have so ardently supported efforts to collect information on our enemies. I strongly encourage you to direct all elements of the Intelligence Committee to fulfill their legal responsibility to keep the Intelligence Committees fully briefed on their activities. The U.S. Congress should not have to play "Twenty Questions" to get the information that it deserves under the Constitution.
This morning in Detroit, in news that shocked absolutely no one, Michigan Congressman Pete Hoekstra (R-MI-02) announced that he plans to duke it out with Terri Lynn Land and Mike Cox for the most thankless job in our state, Governor. The old Congressional dog apparently plans to learn new tricks, as his campaign slogan is "Michigan's Future Begins With Us." Over the coming months we'll undoubtedly have plenty of opportunities to skewer the notion that Pete has Michigan's future anywhere on his radar screen, but for now let's just focus on his website:
("Clear Skies," "Healthy Forests" and Pete Hoekstra as the ranking member of the "Intelligence" Committee... - promoted by PerfectStormer)
CQ Politics is reporting that Michigan's own West Coaster Pete Hoekstra (intel guy!) Twittered details of a supposed-to-be-secret Congressional visit to Iraq.
"Just landed in Baghdad," messaged Hoekstra, a former chairman of the Intelligence panel and now the ranking member, who is routinely entrusted to keep some of the nation's most closely guarded secrets.
Before the delegation left Washington, they were advised to keep the trip to themselves for security reasons. A few media outlets, including Congressional Quarterly, learned about it, but agreed not to disclose anything until the delegation had left Iraq.
Nobody expected, though, that a lawmaker with such an extensive national security background would be the first to break the silence. And in such a big way.
Apparently, Mr. Hoekstra not only Twittered about trip itself, but he also provided real-time updates on the delegation's itinerary.
I somehow doubt that Hoekstra will get a chewing-out from his fellow Intel Guy Mike Rogers (MI-08)for this display of idiocy... much less face any penalties for a pretty severe security breach. So far, the delegation is safe -- guess this means that al-Qaeda in Iraq isn't follwing Hoekstra on Twitter...
I just spent an interesting 30 minutes or so looking at the voting records of the MI Congressional delegation.
If Dave Camp, Vern Ehlers, Pete Hoekstra or Fred Upton represent your district, be sure to ask -- loud and often -- how they can square their votes in favor of the $700 bank bailout , with their votes against the economic stimulus package.
protect[s] Michigan schools, universities and health care providers from deep budget cuts. Also of significance, it also provides $1 billion in new Medicaid health care for the unemployed and their children in a state with a 10.6-percent unemployment rate. There's $1 billion for road construction.
Ask Dave, Vern, Pete and Fred why they think it's more important to throw money at the financial industry -- with no oversight and no accountability, with $87,000 carpets and corporate jets -- than to help unemployed Americans or rebuild our infrastructure.
Ask them why their much-vaunted sense of "fiscal responsibility" doesn't extend to Michigan families who are desperately trying to keep their jobs and their homes.
Republicans on the state Senate Appropriations Committee seemed to welcome all the federal cash coming Lansing's way. Sen. Tom George of Kalamazoo, who has formed an exploratory committee to run for governor in 2010, said Michigan was deserving of even more given the state's disproportionate loss of jobs this decade.
It is with a heavy heart that I announce that the field of candidates for the Republican gubernatorial nomination has gone from seven to six.
Hard to believe, but former linebacker Secretary of State and current Congresscritter Candice Miller has sadly hung up her hat on campaigning for the state's highest office, according to MIRS.
Michigan Republican Party Chair Saul ANUZIS said today that based on a private conversation he had with the former Secretary of State last Monday night, she is out instead of being in.
"It has moved from very likely to highly unlikely she will run," Anuzis told the Off the Record panel after Thursday's taping.
Sheesh. And here I was sitting on the edge of my seat, biting my nails, convinced that with Candy in the race, it was going to be a sweet one. Okay, that's complete bull, but is anyone really surprised?
With Miller's departure, that means that Amway Guy Dick DeVos only has to take out buy off five other "opponents". They include -
That Guy that bought Dominos Pizza - Dave Brandon.
Ladies and Gents, meet the supporting cast of "See Dick Run and Lose, Part Deux" - 4 White Guys and the Token Dutch Female from West Michigan. And doesn't that seem just about right for our Michigan Goppers??
I admit it. I'm an avid NPR listener. If you listen to NPR as much as I do, you know by know that this week they are doing one of their fundraising drives. They are always saying, "Think about it, how much is NPR worth to you?" or "Would you pay just a dollar a day for all of the news and information you get from listening?"
Well, I thought about it. What about a candidate who can bring Democratic values to the forefront of the debate in Michigan's 2nd District? How much is that worth to you?
BFM: Pete Hoekstra Is A Scaremonger. "If Pete Hoekstra wants to talk about terror, he should talk about the terror uninsured people feel in their hearts when they're faced with sudden illness, burdensome medical debt or premature death."
Dan Scripps: Intro @ WSCC Debate. Great speech by Dan at a debate for the 101st House district race.
Media Mouse: Ehlers, Levin, and Stabenow Evaluated on Support for the Middle Class. Carl got an "A," Debbie got an "A+" and Rep. Ehlers got an "F."
LSJ Editorial: Prison costs: State's only choice is to spend less on imprisonment. "Michigan imprisons more people and spends more money doing it than its neighbors. That gives those states an edge, either via greater investments in other public services or the ability to hold down taxes."
Michigan Messenger: Film production incentive package is fast-tracked through the Legislature. "We have the opportunity to do something that will have an important effect on our economy," said Rep. Andy Meisner, D-Ferndale, one of the sponsors of the bipartisan, bicameral package of bills. "We can expect to see increased film production in the state this year."
Ann Arbor Business Review: Lenders: State licensing a good step for stability. "Barbara Banco of BANCO Mortgage Centre in Birmingham has been in the lending business for some 25 years, and believes the bills are long overdue, and that loan officer accountability is a long time coming."
AP: Michigan governor signs bill to create optional driver's licenses. "The legislation is aimed at meeting tougher identification rules required by the Western Hemisphere Travel Initiative."
Freep Editorial: Region needs to move together on new plan for light rail. "In any case, for light rail on Woodward to succeed, the entire region must get behind the plan. Metro Detroit can't afford to let more infighting destroy another opportunity to start building a woefully needed regional mass transit system."
Environment, Energy & the Economy
WMR: Wind and Cow Chips -- The Key to West Michigan's Future?. "West Michigan can move from being an office furniture, pharmaceutical, and auto part manufacturing economy (while keeping as many of those jobs as possible) to being a life-sciences and alternative energy manufacturing economy if we're smart."
Bay City Times: State's first commercial windmill farm starts churning out power in Huron County. An accompanying BCT editorial urges Legislators to get on the stick and pass an RPS.
Dave Dempsey: Who owns the Great Lakes? "In Michigan the debate is particularly keen, and pending legislation could either divest significant portions of lakes and streams from public control to private, or put Michigan in the region's lead in reaffirming Great Lakes water belongs to us all."
Freep: Illegal tobacco sales cost Michigan millions. "Big-time profiteers and small-time cheaters are smuggling 7 million cartons of cigarettes into the state annually to evade Michigan's high cigarette taxes, costing the state about $140 million a year."
The Hub: Michigan filmmakers get the spotlight Sunday. Several nice profiles of Michigan filmmakers who will be featured at this week's East Lansing Film Festival (including one of my former professors).
Let me know if I forgot anything. Drop your links in the comments section...
WJR: Andy Dillon and Mike Bishop explain why they can't come to an agreement on the service tax. Part 2 of Paul W. Smith's interview with Dillon and Bishop can be found here.
AP: Businesses preparing to collect service tax starting Saturday. "Everybody wants to find a reasonable replacement to the service tax," Cherry said. "That's not going to happen unless there's meaningful conversation going on." Columns from Susan Tompor and Dawson Bell can be found here and here. The News' article is here.
Media Mouse: Report Ranks State Government's on Online Disclosure. According to a new report by Good Jobs First -- a "policy resource center" promoting government and corporate accountability -- Michigan's lobbying disclosure received an 89% rating, the highest ranking received.
Skubick: Capitol reform hitting a snag. The part-time legislature folks can't seem to agree on tactics.
Energy, Environment and the Economy
The Conversation: Alternative energy meetings continue in Eaton Rapids. The gov's blog discusses Dowding Industries, which was just recently awarded a $9 million dollar bond from the MEDC for expansion. Dowding is a machining and fabricating company that makes the pieces for wind turbines.
Bay City Times: Company taking steps to double renewable energy generation. "Consumers Energy plans to develop as many as eight windmill farms in Michigan, officials say. The move is part of the utility's Balanced Energy Initiative, which aims in part to double the amount of renewable energy the company generates from 5 percent to 10 percent by 2015."
Upper Hand: Clean Energy Now Launch. Progress Michigan is asking folks to sign their petition, which will be sent "to legislators asking them to stop any more coal fired power plants from developing in Michigan. It also urges them to instate a renewable energy standard of 20% by 2020."
Oakland Press Editorial: Mass transit in metro Detroit deserves more consideration. Yes, you read that correctly. The Oakland Press supports mass transit.
Local, State, National Politics
Daily Tribune: Donigan: 'I'm fighting back'. "I'm fighting back," [Donigan] said. "There needs to be enough information for voters to make an informed decision."
Capitol Journal: You Tube debate, round two. Derek shares his thoughts on Wednesday's Republican YouTube debate.
dKos: Ahh, "liberal" Joe Klein's puppetmaster is Republican Rep. The source for Joe Klein's most recent example of shoddy reporting? None other than Pete "Turtle Power" Hoekstra. More from our own emptywheel here.
Let me know if I forgot anything. Drop your links in the comments section...