On Tuesday, August 3, Michigan voters have the opportunity to select their candidates for this years election in the fall.
The current Governor, Jennifer Granholm, is term limited, so she will not be on any ballots this year. Michigan was in a recession prior to the nation being in a recession. While the rest of the nation was going through the best economic period in 25 years from 2002 through 2006, Michigan suffered, and still is suffering, through it's own recession. The unemployment rate nationwide was at 5% or less during that time but Michigan was languishing under Granholm and the unemployment rate grew from 3% when John Engler left office to over 14%!
Today, liberals favorite line is to talk about the national recession being President Bush's fault. This is right out of the Granholm playbook. She has been blaming Engler from start to finish. Even as recently as this past weekend in an interview on CNN. In the meantime, Governor Granholm is one of the two least liked Governors in the country according to recent polls.
The Democrats have two contenders. Virg Bernero, the current Mayor of Lansing who announced his candidacy within days of being re-elected to Mayor and Andy Dillon, the current Speaker of the House in Michigan.
The Republicans have several candidates. Congressman Pete Hoekstra and attorney General Mike Cox, along with businessman Rick Snyder, Sheriff Mike Bouchard, and state Senator Tom George. Recent polls show the moderate Snyder with a slight lead over Hoekstra and Cox. George is buried at the bottom.
Mike Cox has a history of not being able to control his anger and has some baggage with possible infidelity. In addition, there are stories that he may have been involved wth a cover up of a party where the death of a young girl took place at the manoogian mansion, residence of the Mayor of Detroit, at the time Kwame Kilpatrick. Kilpatrick, son of Congresswoman Kilpatrick is now serving a prison sentence, although not for that event.
Pete Hoekstra and Mike Bouchard are the two Conservatives. Pete Hoekstra seems to have the western part of the state locked up, while Bouchard is very popular on the east side of the state with a large population. Bouchard ran unsuccessfully for Senator a few years ago.
The personal choice here is for Pete Hoekstra.
In District 1, which covers a large part of Northern Michigan, there is a bit of a controversy. Bart Stupak (D) is currently the Representative there. Many even outside of Michigan will remember that it was Stupak that held out on the health care vote until he could get a commitment on abortion not being funded by the Federal Government under the health care plan. When he got the commitment and an executive order, he agreed to vote for health care, pushing it over the top. In the six months since that vote, abortion is once again going to be funded by the Federal government in certain areas.
The controversy in that area, as well as some other districts and for Governor, is regarding the recent entry of a group calling itself the Tea Party. They are now a registered party in Michigan. However, there is more and more information coming to light that indicates the Michigan Democrat Party, Mark Brewer in particular, are behind this to try to split the vote of Republicans in Michigan.
The Democrats in that district have been fighting over abortion and the pro-life candidate apparently has dropped out because the Democrat Party in the area wouldn't back her, wanting a pro-abortion candidate.
District 7 which covers southern Michigan from the Dexter area, through Jackson to Kalamazoo and includes parts of Lansing currently has their Representative, Mark Schauer. Schauer has been controversial in the area. Early on, he held a series of town hall meetings pushing for the bailout. He is the only representative in the country that has claimed to read the entire bill before voting on it despite everyone in the country knowing differently.
He has refused to hold open town hall meetings following that series because the Tea Parties began popping up. His "town hall" meetings from then on, were targeted at select groups, such as seniors, medical personnel and one town hall meeting over the phone where everyone was screened. Schauer is running unopposed on the Democrat side.
On the Republican side, there are three that are running. Tim Walberg, a conservative and former Representative who was beaten by Schauer in the 08 election. Brian Rooney, who moved to the area prior to the filing for his candidacy, and the son of the owner of the Pittsburg Steelers and brother of a Congressman from Florida. Marvin Carlson, a businessman from Ann Arbor.
This is really a race between Walberg and Rooney. Carlson has done little advertising and received little coverage. Rooney has said that he intends to continue the earmarks because the rest of the congress will continue with earmarks. Rooney claims to stand up on principle, but then backs down when it comes to earmarks. For this and because Rooney moved to the district for the election, the choice here is Tim Walberg.
Unfortunately, our two Unites States Senators, Carl Levin and Debbie Stabenow, are not up for election this time around.
I urge you to look into your candidate in your area and choose carefully. As a Tea Party attendee to several of the tea parties in the area, my choice is to go with the Conservative in each office, however, this doesn't mean that if my choices are successful that I'm going to trust them. If they turn into the Washington DC politician, I'll be looking for a replacement for them when the next election rolls around. In the 7th District, this seems to be the way it's gone. No incumbent has been re-elected in that district since Nick Smith left the House.
Primary day is Tuesday, August 3, 2010. Don't forget to go and vote. If you shirk your duty to choose who is going to represent you, you could end up with a government auto company or a government health care plan, or loss or reduction of your medicare, or more bailouts. VOTE!!
If you'd like to talk about your Representative choices in your area, please feel free to add it here.
Your comments are welcome.