Monday, March 29, 2010

Yet another new law we don't need

Politicians want to make it look like they are doing something in the name of safety, so they are about to create a new law that isn't needed. We have laws against careless and reckless driving. We have laws against crossing the double yellow line. We have laws against felonious driving, tailgating, speeding, and everything else. If someone is dumb enough to text and drive, he'll be breaking some other law at some point.

From the Detroit News

Lansing -- Michigan is closer to outlawing texting at the wheel with the Senate's passage Thursday of a no-texting law-- but the House and Senate remain divided over how to enforce a ban.

The House passed a ban on texting while driving as a secondary offense, meaning police could only enforce it if drivers are pulled over for something else -- like speeding or an illegal turn.

The Senate amended the House bill to make it a primary offense, meaning police could pull a driver over for texting at the wheel without another offense. It's up to the House to agree to the change, or the two chambers will have to work out a compromise.

From The Detroit News: http://www.detnews.com/article/20100325/POLITICS02/3250476/1409/metro#ixzz0jaY1LvDv


This is the interesting part. Primary v secondary.

AAA Michigan, Allstate and other auto insurers have called for a texting ban. Officials with the Michigan State Police have said they would prefer that texting be a primary offense

Of course they want a primary offense classification. More money for the coffers. This is not about safety, but more tickets.

The votes in the house (secondary offense) is 105-2, with Geiss and Bledsoe voting no. Geiss voted no because he thought it should be a primary offense. The senate bill passed. 22-10. The no votes are Bishop, Jansen, Nofs, Sanborn, Brown, Kuipers ,Patterson, Stamas, Garcia, McManus, Richardville. I think the only controversey within the group is primary v secondary. I hope it doesn't pass, because new laws aren't needed.

Granholm pushes for a new tax increase

The Matt Millen of Governors is at it again with her push for tax increases. From the Detroit News.

ansing -- Gov. Jennifer Granholm defended her proposal to extend the sales tax to services on a cable TV news show this morning, saying Michigan "has to invest in education" to convert from a manufacturing to a knowledge-based economy.
The governor said on MSNBC that Michigan has "a big, hairy audacious goal of doubling our number of college graduates." In order to do that, she said the state has to stop cutting education spending, which it did this year by $165 per student.
Since public school aid is funded primarily with sales taxes, the state needs to update and stabilize its sales levy by expanding it to include most services, Granholm said. In the past century, about 60 percent of consumer purchases were made on goods and today about two-thirds is spent on services, she said.

From The Detroit News: http://www.detnews.com/article/20100329/POLITICS02/3290392/1022/Granholm--Sales-tax-on-services-needed-to-bolster-education#ixzz0jaR7wdmG

This ain't new. Granholm pushed this in 2009

This is a big threat to occur however. It's not just Granholm pushing this. Pete Hoekstra has signed on board with this. Self proclaimed Business Leaders for Michigan is on board.

I don't see solutions, only gimmicks and demands that people bail out the government for their fiscal mismanagement. The problem is jobs. The sales tax revenues are down because people are spending less.

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Population shift in Michigan - People move away from democrat areas

Interesting map from the Detroit Free Press.



Growing areas:
Livingston County - 3rd most Republican county in the state
Grand Traverse County - Leans Republican
Ottawa County - Most Republican County in the state
Allegan County - 4th or 5th most Republican county in the state
Kent County - Leans Republican in most elections
Clinton County - Leans Republican in most elections
Benzie County - swing county
Emmet County - Solid Republican
Macomb County - Swing
Washtenaw County - Democrat
Isabella County - Swing to slightly democrat

Shrinking areas
UP - Still locally and statewide democrat
Northeastern Lower Michigan - leans democrat
Wayne County - Most democrat county in the state
Saginaw, Bay, Genesee Counties - Democrat

Oakland County only grew 1% - That's due to that southeastern tier being all democrat.


The question is this. Will Michiganders that move from democrat havens be idiots and vote for the same people that ran those areas into the ground? Democrats - starting with white democrats like Jerome Cavanaugh - destroyed Detroit, and are doing the same with Michigan.

Saturday, March 27, 2010

AP thinks a few speak for all Republicans

My eyes are rolling back in my head with this crap from the AP.

WASHINGTON – Republicans were for President Barack Obama's requirement that Americans get health insurance before they were against it.

The obligation in the new health care law is a Republican idea that's been around at least two decades. It was once trumpeted as an alternative to Bill and Hillary Clinton's failed health care overhaul in the 1990s. These days, Republicans call it government overreach.

Mitt Romney, weighing another run for the GOP presidential nomination, signed such a requirement into law at the state level as Massachusetts governor in 2006. At the time, Romney defended it as "a personal responsibility principle" and Massachusetts' newest GOP senator, Scott Brown, backed it. Romney now says Obama's plan is a federal takeover that bears little resemblance to what he did as governor and should be repealed.

I need to check the archives, but I think that old "alternative" to Hillarycare at the time was a Nancy Kassembaumn bill. Romney is a rather liberal republican on several issues, which is one of the reasons why he did not win the nomination in 2008.

In the early 1970s, President Richard Nixon favored a mandate that employers provide insurance. In the 1990s, the Heritage Foundation, a conservative think tank, embraced an individual requirement. Not anymore.

"The idea of an individual mandate as an alternative to single-payer was a Republican idea," said health economist Mark Pauly of the University of Pennsylvania's Wharton School. In 1991, he published a paper that explained how a mandate could be combined with tax credits — two ideas that are now part of Obama's law. Pauly's paper was well-received — by the George H.W. Bush administration.

Nixon was very liberal on domestic issues. Affirmative Action. Price freezes. George HW Bush raised taxes and was against "Reaganomics." That's not conservatism. Conservatism is about LESS GOVERNMENT.

Because those people supported, the AP thinks they speak for all or even most Republicans. I don't think so. Individual mandates did not become law for a reason. It was and is a damn bad idea. I don't care if you are Mitt Romney or Barack Obama. I did not vote for either of them.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Gun Owners of America fundraiser this Saturday

I got this in my email. I probably won't be able to make it, but I'll pass it along. Nothing like a 2nd Amendment fundraiser in the backyard of Carolyn Cheeks Kilpatrick, who supports the Chicago Gun Ban.

Join us !
Gun Owners Dinner

Dear GOA Members, Supporters and Friends,

Gun Owners Of America is pleased to announce our “Friends of the Second Amendment” dinner to be held at Sindbads on The River, located at 100 St. Clair Street, Detroit, Michigan on Saturday, March 27th 2010 from 5 P.M. until 8 P.M. http://www.sindbads.com/flash/index.html

This year’s dinner will be highlighted with a special address from keynote speaker Mr. Larry Pratt, Executive Director, Gun Owners of America and many noted local, state, federal political figures will be on hand to answer your questions.

Tickets to this event are $50 per person $75 per couple and $40 per person for a table of eight ($320). This includes a one year membership (or extension) to GOA, plus door prizes, silent auction of your favorite firearms accessories and firearms raffle.

*Proceeds from the dinner will go to Gun Owners of America.*

Dinner Menu Includes:

Michigan Venison Kabobs, Sesame Chicken, Fresh Fried Clam Strips,
Italian Sausage with Peppers and Onions and Fruit, Vegetable & Cheese trays.

Gun rights enthusiasts, you will not want to miss this event!

*To confirm your attendance by credit card go to: http://gunowners.org/midinner.htm

*To confirm your attendance by check (before March 23rd): Mail to 8001 Forbes Place, Springfield, VA 22151. Please make checks payable to GOA with “GOA Dinner” noted on the memo line.

North Oakland Republican Club and the Constitutional Convention

The North Oakland Republican Club is one of the best Republican groups in Southeast Michigan. I'm familiar with them as much of North Oakland is in the 8th district and I've been to a couple of meetings there. They have a well run organization, do their homework, and keep that part of Oakland County in good hands. If you're an active Republican in Northern Oakland County, I recommend giving that organization a look.

Shameless plug, I will be one of the speakers at tomorrow's NORC meeting. The topic is the Constitutional Convention (con-con) on the ballot. I oppose it. The other speaker on this topic is Henry Woloson who supports it. I've done my homework on this issue following it for three years. I assume Mr. Woloson has followed this issue for a long time as well.

I've gone into details on my opposition in past posts on this blog.

It should be a good event. 6:30 at the Pontiac Country Club in Waterford.

Monday, March 22, 2010

How to modify and/or repeal Obamacare - Don't get mad. Get even.

"He pulls a knife, you pull a gun. He sends one of yours to the hospital, you send one of his to the morgue! That's the Chicago way" - The Untouchables

I'm not into the Chicago way, but I am Irish by blood, and we never stop fighting, either in politics or other matters. I'm not interested in online petitions. They are a waste of time. I'm interested in getting this damn thing modified and better yet repealed.

The problem with politics is patience and short memories. Most people don't have any patience, or follow politics enough to have long memories. There is a way to repeal Obamacare, and it's much harder than just having votes. It's a long process, and it will take years. It took 10 years just for the ugly gun ban to expire, and that's only with a sunset provision. Obamacare CAN be repealed, but it won't be easy.

Assuming Obama will veto a repeal, it will take 67 senators, and 292 representatives to repeal this completely. It is unlikely there will be a repeal until at least 2012 if that punk Obama gets the firing he deserves. It will take a majority in congress for any good reforms to see the light of day in committee. In addition to that, we have redistricting in 2011 which redraws the congressional boundaries. In most states, the state legislature and governor draws the districts. I don't like that system, but it is what it is, and we need to use that to our advantage.

Goal 1 - Take the committee chairs. Take the gavels away from Pelosi, Waxman, and company. That takes a majority.
Goal 2 - Take a fillibuster proof majority in the senate
Goal 3 - Take the presidency and/or veto proof majority
Goal 4 - Get rid of the damn thing, and a bunch of other bad laws passed over the last century.

What can we do now, here in 2010?

A. The obvious point, vote Republican in federal races. It doesn't stop there though.

B. If you are in a swing state, a republican state, a republican county, or republican congressional district - fill out the census form. This is the quickest and easiest way to help. The more strength in Livingston County here, the more the borders contract in the district, as we don't have to expand Mike's district. This is about 2012. It does no good to take the house back in 2010, and lose it in 2012 with redistricting. Don't boycott this in Michigan. The price may be Thad McCotter or Mike Rogers being redistricted out of a congressional seat.

C. Make sure republicans are elected in Gubernatorial, State Representative, and State Senatorial races. In 2010, all of them are up for election in Michigan. These races determine the 2012 congressional districts in redistricting.

D. Research. Find out the competitive seats, and send money or use time to help these candidates. Some people don't have money. Others do. Some have some time that can be used for stuffing envelopes, walking doors, etc. All of that is important. Some are easier pickings than others. John Conyers for example is in a district that votes 85% democrat every year. The Gary Peters, Mark Schauer, and Bart Stupak districts voted for Bush. Don't forget defense either. Thad McCotter had a close race in 2008, winning with 51%. He needs support as well.

E. Know the district. Some districts are bad for certain types of candidates. Scott Brown is the Massachusetts senator. He won't be with us on everything, but it's Massachusetts. We have to take what we can get there.

All of the house congressional elections are up in 2010. So are many senators. Here's the senate races, all 36 of them. We need +9 to take control. I think there's a good chance of that in 2012. 2010 it is a long shot.

Alabama - Richard Shelby - I don't like him, and would like to see him primaried, but I'll take his committee vote. He's probably safe.

Alaska - Lisa Murkowski - I'd keep an eye on this one. Murkowski won with 48% last time.

Arizona - John McCain's running again. He has a primary challenger in JD Hayworth. I'd rather see someone besides either of them, but if I have to pick one of the two, I'd reluctantly pick Hayworth.

Arkansas - Blanche Lincoln. She's vulrunable and is one of the best shots for a pickup.

California - Barbara Boxer - Longshot, but possible. I just hope the nominee isn't Carly Fiorina who ran Hewlett Packard into the ground.

Colorado - Michael Bennett - He was appointed after Ken Salazar left for an administration post in the Obama admin. This is a good chance for a pickup.

Connecticut - Chris Dodd is retiring. This is an open seat. It won't be easy, but it's worth a fight.

Delaware - Mike Castle isn't my type of republican, but like Shelby, I'll take his committee vote.

Florida - Marco Rubio has a good chance of wrapping up the primary here against stimulus loving Charlie Crist. He needs support in the general election as well.

Georgia - Johnny Isakson should be safe.

Hawaii - Daniel Inouye is probably safe, but if there is any year to battle the dems, this is it. He's 86 years old this year.

Idaho - Mike Crapo - Safe

Illinois - Open seat as Roland Burris isn't running. This is a possible pickup despite its democrat leanings. Between Blago's troubles, Burris's troubles, and the fact that the dems nominated a 34 year old banker with a questionable past, we have a shot here. Mark Kirk isn't my favorite, but he won the primary, and I'll take the committee vote, and right now, that's the first step.

Indiana - Evan Bayh is retiring. This should be a pickup unless the GOP is stupid.

Iowa - Chuck Grassley is about as safe as one gets in Iowa, which is never safe for either party.

Kansas - Open seat. As long as the infighting isn't too bad, we should keep this, whether Jerry Moran or Todd Tiahrt wins the primary.

Kentucky - Open seat as Jim Bunning is retiring. Keep an eye on this one. Kentucky isn't as republican as one thinks once you get past the presidential level.

Louisiana - The question here is whether David Vitter cleaned up his troubles. If I'm Vitter, I'm making this election about Pelosi and Obama and Melancon. This will be tough.

Maryland - Barbara Mikulski is probably safe, but if there's any year to fight, it's this one.

Missouri - Roy Blunt vs Robin Carnahan. I'm not a Blunt fan, but I'm even less of a Carnahan fan. I'll take his committee vote.

Nevada - Harry Reid is in big trouble.

New Hampshire - Judd Gregg is stepping down and this will be our toughest defense.

New York - Both Chuck Schumer and Kristen Gillibrand are up. I'll like to see someone pick off one of these. It's unlikely, but if any year is the year, this is it. Schumer is one of the brains behind the operations, so it's worth a shot just to get him scared.

North Carolina - Richard Burr is up and has a tough defense. He won with 51% last time.

North Dakota - Byron Dorgan isn't running. I wouldn't take this seat for granted, but we need to make sure its ours.

Ohio - George Voinovich is retiring, and I'm not unhappy about that. Rob Portman is the likely nominee for the GOP. This will be a tough defense. Nothing in Ohio is easy.

Oklahoma - Tom Coburn should be safe.

Oregon - Ron Wyden is about as safe as it gets in Oregon, but that state isn't unwinnable with the right candidate. Bush almost won it in 2000.

Pennsylvania - Arlen Sphincter, I mean Specter is getting double flanked. The dems are running Joe Stesak against him in the primary, and Pat Toomey (who won a democrat leaning seat himself) is showing he has more strength than the pundits thought. This needs to be a pickup

South Carolina - Jim DeMint should be safe.

South Dakota - John Thune may have a tough race, but should be safe unless Herseth runs.

Utah - Bob Bennett has primary troubles, but that seat should stay Republican.

Washington State - Patty Murray will be tough to beat, but this is the year to try. Slade Gorton won there a few times so it is possible to win there.

Wisconsin - Russ Feingold usually finds a way to survive, but now's the time to go for it.

A veto override majority isn't possible in 2010, but is there enough to take the senate? Possible. It's worth a shot.

The house is a better shot. If we get the seats that went for Bush in 2000, let alone 2004, we get the house back. There's dozens of districts that fit that profile, three of which here in Michigan. Gary Peters. Bart Stupak. Mark Schauer. Also off the top of my head in the Midwest. Three of them in Indiana. Joe Donnely. Brad Ellsworth's open seat, and Baron Hill. In Ohio, Steve Driehaus, Charlie Wilson, Zach Space, Mary Jo Kilroy, and John Boccieri. That's just in three states.

I can't forget the state house and state senate side as well. Again, it goes to redistricting. We need to keep the state senate, and it won't be easy. What should be:

St Senate (have 22-16 advantage)
Defenses:
St Senate 7 (Outer Wayne County)
St Senate 11 (Central and Northern Macomb)
St Senate 12 (NE Oakland, including Pontiac)
St Senate 13 (Eastern Oakland)
St Senate 17 (Monroe, part of Washtenaw and Jackson County)
St Senate 19 (Calhoun/Jackson Counties)
St Senate 20 (Kalamazoo, part of Van Buren)
St Senate 25 (Lapeer, St Clair)
St Senate 29 (Grand Rapids)
St Senate 34 (Muskegon and North of there)
St Senate 36 (Northeast Michigan)

Targets for pickup:
St Senate 6 (Livonia, Westland, Redford)
St Senate 10 (Sterling Heights, Roseville)
St Senate 26 (Eastern Genesee, North Central Oakland)
St Senate 31 (Thumb, Bay County)
St Senate 38 (UP, if Casperson runs)

St House (we need to win 13 seats, I listed 29 targets)
Defenses:
House 19 - Livonia
House 30 - Northern Sterling Heights
House 43 - Waterford
House 51 - Southern Genesee County
House 61 - Portage, Western Kalamazoo County
House 63 - Part of Kalamazoo and Calhoun Counties
House 71 - Most of Eaton County
House 78 - Southern Berrien County
House 80 - Van Buren County
House 81 - Most of St Clair County
House 85 - Shiawassee and part of Clinton County
House 94 - Rural Saginaw County
House 97 - Clare, Gladwin, Arenac, Rural Bay County.
House 99 - Isabella and part of Midland County


Pickup targers:
House 1 - Grosse Pointes, part of Detroit
House 20 - Plymouth
House 21 - Canton
House 23 - Far Downriver
House 24 - St Clair Shores, Harrison Twp
House 25 - North Warren (Had it as recently as 2000)
House 26 - Royal Oak (almost had it in 2004, shockingly)
House 31 - Clinton Twp, Mt Clemens
House 32 - Northern Macomb, pt of St Clair
House 37 - Farmington Hills (Rocky won there three times)
House 39 - Commerce, West Bloomfield (Dave Law and Marc Shulman won there)
House 52 - Western Washtenaw County
House 55 - Western Monroe County, part of Washtenaw County
House 56 - Eastern Monroe County
House 57 - Most of Lenawee County
House 64 - Part of Jackson County
House 65 - Part of Jackson County and part of Eaton County.
House 67 - Most of Ingham County outside East Lansing and Meridian Twp. Includes South Lansing.
House 70 - Montcalm and part of Ionia County
House 75 - Part of Grand Rapids
House 83 - Sanilac County and part of St Clair County
House 84 - Tuscola and Huron Counties
House 91 - Part of Muskegon County
House 101 - Leelanau, Benzie, Mason, and Manistee Counties
House 103 - Missaukee, Roscommon, Ogemaw, Iosco Counties
House 106 - Crawford, Oscoda, Alcona, Alpena, Montmorency, and Presque Isle Counties.
House 107 - Emmet, Mackinac, and Chippewa Counties
House 108 - Dickinson, Menominee, and Delta Counties
House 110 - Western UP.

This in 2010 lays the groundwork for getting rid of that 2300+ page monstrosity known as Obamacare. It starts with redistricting, stopping the bleeding, and then taking the state legislatures and governorships, as well the US House and US Senate to get ready for 2012, and then getting rid of this crap in 2013.

Remember these votes. Defeat Stupak. Defeat Schauer. Defeat Peters.

While Bart Stupak in the first district (MI-01) is dominating the headlines for his flip on this bill, he's not the only democrat who voted for this here in Michigan. Five of them are in 60% Democrat seats and would be extremely difficult to defeat. It's still worth a shot this year, but I expect them to survive unless we have a 1994 type year. Dale Kildee in MI-05, John Conyers (Detroit), Carolyn Kilpatrick (Detroit), Sander Levin (Southern Oakland and Macomb Counties), and John Dingell (Ann Arbor, Downriver).

Two others that need the heat are Mark Schauer in the 7th District (MI-07), and Gary Peters in the 9th District (MI-09). These are difficult, but winnable districts. Bush won twice in both of these districts. With the dip in 2006 and 2008 over thanks to Bush's retirement, I like the chances for taking these seats back with Obama's overreach.

Mark Schauer is a yesman with no original thought of his own except those given by his masters. Pelosi and Obama. He also received the endorsement of NARAL already. That is not a good district for someone to be rabidly pro-abortion like Schauer. He needs to be shown the door, and Tim Walberg is the man to do it.

Gary Peters is much like Schauer. His economic leftism is not a good fit for the 9th district, and when they get taxed up the wazoo with the surcharges, there should be hell to pay. Peters needs to be shown the door and Rocky Raczkowski who has won three difficult races in Farmington Hills, is the man to do it.

Stupak needs to go, but so does Schauer and Peters. Don't forget them.

Mike Cox files constitutional challenge to Obamacare

I don't normally post press releases, but this tells the story.

Cox Files Constitutional Challenge to Federal Health Care Legislation

Contact: John Sellek or Joy Yearout 517-373-8060
Agency: Attorney General

March 22, 2010



LANSING - Michigan Attorney General Mike Cox today announced that Michigan has joined the State of Florida in a lawsuit challenging the constitutionality of health care legislation passed by the U.S. House of Representatives Sunday night (H.R. 3590).



"Congress' attempt to force Michigan families to buy health insurance - or else - raises serious constitutional concerns," said Cox. "We will fight to defend the individual rights and freedoms of Michigan citizens against this radical overreach by the federal government."



Michigan joined several states in Florida's legal challenge to H.R. 3590. The lawsuit challenges Congressional authority under the U.S. Constitution to enact an individual mandate compelling Michigan citizens to purchase health insurance or face large fines.



Cox also expressed concern about the continued inclusion of the so-called "Cornhusker Kickback" in legislation. The "Kickback" allows the State of Nebraska to avoid paying its fair share of an expansion of Medicaid by forcing taxpayers in states like Michigan to pick up the $100 million tab.

In December, Cox joined a bi-partisan group of Attorneys General from across the country opposing the kickback and demanding Congress remove the unfair provision or potentially face legal action.

Will it fly? I think that depends on if the fine disguised as a tax is considered a tax or a fine. Direct Taxes are unfortunately constitutional. However, it is illegal for the feds to compel states to use their resources to enforce federal legislation. If that precedent is expanded, we have a shot.

Outside of that, the only thing we can hopeful is for some of the commerce clause abuses to be curtailed and for the long dormant 10th Amendment to have some teeth again.

Which Republican will rise to the occasion and challenge Bart Stupak?

Stupak voted with Obama in the end like a good democrat. That's about what I expected out of him. I'm getting a lot of hits from non-Michiganders who are looking up Stupak and want to see a good opponent run against him.

This was my profile of the 1st district

This is the Democrat challenging Stupak in the August primary

Personally, I'd like to see Tom Casperson (running for State Senate) or Scott Shackleton run against him. They are both former state reps who won tough districts in the UP. The 1st district is a very difficult district to win for anybody because it is a large populist regional district where local ties strongly matter. Yoopers prefer yoopers in their voting patterns. Trolls prefer inland trolls to coastal candidates. Natives prefer natives to any "recent" (after high school) transplants. Small town politics dominate this area, in good and bad ways.

It's also a democrat leaning district, but it is a local democrat or conservative democrat leaning district. It's not a John Kerry district. McCain would have won here if he didn't abandon the entire state in a stupid public announcement. This is also 2010 and not 2008. There's a different dynamic here and the Bush fatigue is long past. Bush is gone.

Stupak has dominated this district with over 60% every time. He was held to 58% twice in the only 1990's district which was more Republican. There's a now a chance that Stupak can go down. It won't be easy, but it's possible. Why? He's gone national. That's why. He became a national democrat instead of the Menominee Democrat he is supposed to be.

So who's stepping up to the plate? Three People so far are running.

Don Hooper ran several against Stupak. He's running again.

Linda Goldthorpe ran in the 2008 primary against Casperson. She was on Ron Paul's campaign. She's running again.

Dan Benishek is a Surgeon and running as well. He doesn't have a website up, although he's getting press on blogs like Ed Morrisey's Hot Air. If Benishek wants to take advantage of this, he better get a website up ASAP. UPDATE - Benishek's campaign is working on its website.

All three, and any others that jump in, have an opportunity that was not there in 96, 98, 2000, 2002, 2004, 2006, and 2008. There's a big chink in Stupak's armor that was not there right now. He's gone national.

A chance like this against someone as strong as Stupak usually is does not come around very often. It will take hard work, organization, money, and the right candidate. Who has what it takes? That remains to be seen.

The big government health care reform (deform) bill passes - comply or spend five years in prison

Forget tea parties. I want a torches and pitchforks party. I'll bring the beer. We'll need lots of it with this piece of trash passed. This needs to be repealed immediately after Mr. Obama signs this - unless the courts strike this, or parts of this down. Here's the bill, all 2310 pages of it. It's a long read, nearly 1000 pages longer than War and Peace.

It was a party line vote in Michigan. All the dems voted for this. All the Republicans voted against this. It's no secret all the crap that from this senate bill which was moved to the house. There's still procedural battles and this will probably end up in the courts. Supposedly, Bart Stupak had an agreement with Obama about an executive order on abortion language. I'll believe it when I see it.

How bad is this bill?  I've decided to take another look at this 2310 page monstrosity. First rule of thumb, if a bill is 2310 pages, most reps have not read it, and it's bad news. War and Peace is 1440 pages. Atlas Shrugged is 1200 pages. This bill is nearly twice as big, and on much bigger pages, and the same small print. There's plenty of small print there. Page 119


SEC. 222. PREMIUMS AND FINANCING.

    (a) Establishment of Premiums-
      (1) IN GENERAL- The Secretary shall establish geographically-adjusted premium rates for the public health insurance option in a manner--
        (A) that complies with the premium rules established by the Commissioner under section 113 for Exchange-participating health benefit plans; and
        (B) at a level sufficient to fully finance the costs of--
          (i) health benefits provided by the public health insurance option; and
          (ii) administrative costs related to operating the public health insurance option.
      (2) CONTINGENCY MARGIN- In establishing premium rates under paragraph (1), the Secretary shall include an appropriate amount for a contingency margin.
    (b) Account-
      (1) ESTABLISHMENT- There is established in the Treasury of the United States an Account for the receipts and disbursements attributable to the operation of the public health insurance option, including the start-up funding under paragraph (2). Section 1854(g) of the Social Security Act shall apply to receipts described in the previous sentence in the same manner as such section applies to payments or premiums described in such section.
      (2) START-UP FUNDING-
        (A) IN GENERAL- In order to provide for the establishment of the public health insurance option there is hereby appropriated to the Secretary, out of any funds in the Treasury not otherwise appropriated, $2,000,000,000. In order to provide for initial claims reserves before the collection of premiums, there is hereby appropriated to the Secretary, out of any funds in the Treasury not otherwise appropriated, such sums as necessary to cover 90 days worth of claims reserves based on projected enrollment.
        (B) AMORTIZATION OF START-UP FUNDING- The Secretary shall provide for the repayment of the startup funding provided under subparagraph (A) to the Treasury in an amortized manner over the 10-year period beginning with Y1.
        (C) LIMITATION ON FUNDING- Nothing in this section shall be construed as authorizing any additional appropriations to the Account, other than such amounts as are otherwise provided with respect to other Exchange-participating health benefits plans.
This is Government here.Administrative costs are quadrupled. This is the home of the  $400 hammer and $600 toilet seat.

And page 126:



SEC. 225. PROVIDER PARTICIPATION.

    (a) In General- The Secretary shall establish conditions of participation for health care providers under the public health insurance option.
    (b) Licensure or Certification- The Secretary shall not allow a health care provider to participate in the public health insurance option unless such provider is appropriately licensed, certified, or otherwise permitted to practice under State law.
    (c) Payment Terms for Providers-
      (1) PHYSICIANS- The Secretary shall provide for the annual participation of physicians under the public health insurance option, for which payment may be made for services furnished during the year, in one of 2 classes:
        (A) PREFERRED PHYSICIANS- Those physicians who agree to accept the payment rate established under section 223 (without regard to cost-sharing) as the payment in full.
        (B) PARTICIPATING, NON-PREFERRED PHYSICIANS- Those physicians who agree not to impose charges (in relation to the payment rate described in section 223 for such physicians) that exceed the ratio permitted under section 1848(g)(2)(C) of the Social Security Act.
      (2) OTHER PROVIDERS- The Secretary shall provide for the participation (on an annual or other basis specified by the Secretary) of health care providers (other than physicians) under the public health insurance option under which payment shall only be available if the provider agrees to accept the payment rate established under section 223 (without regard to cost-sharing) as the payment in full.
    (d) Exclusion of Certain Providers- The Secretary shall exclude from participation under the public health insurance option a health care provider that is excluded from participation in a Federal health care program (as defined in section 1128B(f) of the Social Security Act).

Conditions to participate. Here's a question. How many doctors are going to say screw this and not participate?


Page 149:
SEC. 312. EMPLOYER RESPONSIBILITY TO CONTRIBUTE TOWARDS EMPLOYEE AND DEPENDENT COVERAGE.

(a) In General- An employer meets the requirements of this section with respect to an employee if the following requirements are met:

(1) OFFERING OF COVERAGE- The employer offers the coverage described in section 311(1) either through an Exchange-participating health benefits plan or other than through such a plan.

(2) EMPLOYER REQUIRED CONTRIBUTION- The employer timely pays to the issuer of such coverage an amount not less than the employer required contribution specified in subsection (b) for such coverage.

(3) PROVISION OF INFORMATION- The employer provides the Health Choices Commissioner, the Secretary of Labor, the Secretary of Health and Human Services, and the Secretary of the Treasury, as applicable, with such information as the Commissioner may require to ascertain compliance with the requirements of this section.

(4) AUTOENROLLMENT OF EMPLOYEES- The employer provides for autoenrollment of the employee in accordance with subsection (c).

(b) Reduction of Employee Premiums Through Minimum Employer Contribution-

(1) FULL-TIME EMPLOYEES- The minimum employer contribution described in this subsection for coverage of a full-time employee (and, if any, the employee's spouse and qualifying children (as defined in section 152(c) of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986) under a qualified health benefits plan (or current employment-based health plan) is equal to--

(A) in case of individual coverage, not less than 72.5 percent of the applicable premium (as defined in section 4980B(f)(4) of such Code, subject to paragraph (2)) of the lowest cost plan offered by the employer that is a qualified health benefits plan (or is such current employment-based health plan); and

(B) in the case of family coverage which includes coverage of such spouse and children, not less 65 percent of such applicable premium of such lowest cost plan.

(2) APPLICABLE PREMIUM FOR EXCHANGE COVERAGE- In this subtitle, the amount of the applicable premium of the lowest cost plan with respect to coverage of an employee under an Exchange-participating health benefits plan is the reference premium amount under section 243(c) for individual coverage (or, if elected, family coverage) for the premium rating area in which the individual or family resides.

(3) MINIMUM EMPLOYER CONTRIBUTION FOR EMPLOYEES OTHER THAN FULL-TIME EMPLOYEES- In the case of coverage for an employee who is not a full-time employee, the amount of the minimum employer contribution under this subsection shall be a proportion (as determined in accordance with rules of the Health Choices Commissioner, the Secretary of Labor, the Secretary of Health and Human Services, and the Secretary of the Treasury, as applicable) of the minimum employer contribution under this subsection with respect to a full-time employee that reflects the proportion of--

(A) the average weekly hours of employment of the employee by the employer, to

(B) the minimum weekly hours specified by the Commissioner for an employee to be a full-time employee.

(4) SALARY REDUCTIONS NOT TREATED AS EMPLOYER CONTRIBUTIONS- For purposes of this section, any contribution on behalf of an employee with respect to which there is a corresponding reduction in the compensation of the employee shall not be treated as an amount paid by the employer.

(c) Automatic Enrollment for Employer Sponsored Health Benefits-

(1) IN GENERAL- The requirement of this subsection with respect to an employer and an employee is that the employer automatically enrolls such employee into the employment-based health benefits plan for individual coverage under the plan option with the lowest applicable employee premium.

(2) OPT-OUT- In no case may an employer automatically enroll an employee in a plan under paragraph (1) if such employee makes an affirmative election to opt out of such plan or to elect coverage under an employment-based health benefits plan offered by such employer. An employer shall provide an employee with a 30-day period to make such an affirmative election before the employer may automatically enroll the employee in such a plan.

(3) NOTICE REQUIREMENTS-

(A) IN GENERAL- Each employer described in paragraph (1) who automatically enrolls an employee into a plan as described in such paragraph shall provide the employees, within a reasonable period before the beginning of each plan year (or, in the case of new employees, within a reasonable period before the end of the enrollment period for such a new employee), written notice of the employees' rights and obligations relating to the automatic enrollment requirement under such paragraph. Such notice must be comprehensive and understood by the average employee to whom the automatic enrollment requirement applies.

(B) INCLUSION OF SPECIFIC INFORMATION- The written notice under subparagraph (A) must explain an employee's right to opt out of being automatically enrolled in a plan and in the case that more than one level of benefits or employee premium level is offered by the employer involved, the notice must explain which level of benefits and employee premium level the employee will be automatically enrolled in the absence of an affirmative election by the employee.

SEC. 313. EMPLOYER CONTRIBUTIONS IN LIEU OF COVERAGE.

(a) In General- A contribution is made in accordance with this section with respect to an employee if such contribution is equal to an amount equal to 8 percent of the average wages paid by the employer during the period of enrollment (determined by taking into account all employees of the employer and in such manner as the Commissioner provides, including rules providing for the appropriate aggregation of related employers). Any such contribution--

(1) shall be paid to the Health Choices Commissioner for deposit into the Health Insurance Exchange Trust Fund, and

(2) shall not be applied against the premium of the employee under the Exchange-participating health benefits plan in which the employee is enrolled.

Basically, we have an 8 percent payroll tax.

Page 143...
SEC. 301. INDIVIDUAL RESPONSIBILITY.

For an individual's responsibility to obtain acceptable coverage, see section 59B of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 (as added by section 401 of this division).

And what does section 401 say? Page 167...

SEC. 59B. TAX ON INDIVIDUALS WITHOUT ACCEPTABLE HEALTH CARE COVERAGE.

`(a) Tax Imposed- In the case of any individual who does not meet the requirements of subsection (d) at any time during the taxable year, there is hereby imposed a tax equal to 2.5 percent of the excess of--

`(1) the taxpayer's modified adjusted gross income for the taxable year, over

`(2) the amount of gross income specified in section 6012(a)(1) with respect to the taxpayer.

It's a 2.5% of your income that is fined. This is a penalty. This is a penalty fine disguised as a tax and should be challenged. The penalty for not paying the fine/tax is a trip to prison. I wrote about it here in November of 2009. Sections 7201 and 7203. They are already law, part of the Internal Revenue Code.

7201 - Attempt to Evade or Defeat tax. Felony. $100,000 fine. 5 years in prison.

7203 - Willful failure to file return, supply information, or pay tax. Misdemeanor. $25,000 fine. 1 year in prison.

There's also a surcharge. Page 197.

SEC. 59C. SURCHARGE ON HIGH INCOME INDIVIDUALS.

`(a) General Rule- In the case of a taxpayer other than a corporation, there is hereby imposed (in addition to any other tax imposed by this subtitle) a tax equal to--

`(1) 1 percent of so much of the modified adjusted gross income of the taxpayer as exceeds $350,000 but does not exceed $500,000,

`(2) 1.5 percent of so much of the modified adjusted gross income of the taxpayer as exceeds $500,000 but does not exceed $1,000,000, and

`(3) 5.4 percent of so much of the modified adjusted gross income of the taxpayer as exceeds $1,000,000.

I wonder how many sole proprietors, partnerships, and LLC's are going to be out of business with this. Those aren't corporations, but are a large number of businesses.

The Attorney General has more access. Eric Holder I don't want near medical records. I don't want John Ashcroft there either for that matter. Section 1651

SEC. 1651. ACCESS TO INFORMATION NECESSARY TO IDENTIFY FRAUD, WASTE, AND ABUSE.

Section 1128G of the Social Security Act, as added by section 1631 and amended by sections 1632 and 1641, is further amended by adding at the end the following new subsection;

`(d) Access to Information Necessary To Identify Fraud, Waste, and Abuse- For purposes of law enforcement activity, and to the extent consistent with applicable disclosure, privacy, and security laws, including the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 and the Privacy Act of 1974, and subject to any information systems security requirements enacted by law or otherwise required by the Secretary, the Attorney General shall have access, facilitation by the Inspector General of the Department of Health and Human Services, to claims and payment data relating to titles XVIII and XIX, in consultation with the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services or the owner of such data.'.

I have to relook at the HIPPA laws, but things are in bills for a reason. My guard's up, and while I don't see a wolf yet, there's a potential one.

Here's a potential wolf.

SEC. 3121. NATIONAL PREVENTION AND WELLNESS STRATEGY.

`(a) In General- The Secretary shall submit to the Congress within one year after the date of the enactment of this section, and at least every 2 years thereafter, a national strategy that is designed to improve the Nation's health through evidence-based clinical and community prevention and wellness activities (in this section referred to as `prevention and wellness activities'), including core public health infrastructure improvement activities.

`(b) Contents- The strategy under subsection (a) shall include each of the following:

`(1) Identification of specific national goals and objectives in prevention and wellness activities that take into account appropriate public health measures and standards, including departmental measures and standards (including Healthy People and National Public Health Performance Standards).

`(2) Establishment of national priorities for prevention and wellness, taking into account unmet prevention and wellness needs.

`(3) Establishment of national priorities for research on prevention and wellness, taking into account unanswered research questions on prevention and wellness.

`(4) Identification of health disparities in prevention and wellness.

`(5) A plan for addressing and implementing paragraphs (1) through (4).

`(c) Consultation- In developing or revising the strategy under subsection (a), the Secretary shall consult with the following:

`(1) The heads of appropriate health agencies and offices in the Department, including the Office of the Surgeon General of the Public Health Service, the Office of Minority Health, and the Office on Women's Health.

`(2) As appropriate, the heads of other Federal departments and agencies whose programs have a significant impact upon health (as determined by the Secretary).

You see, government has a major stake now in health care. Tax money in spades is going towards that. In addition, my experience in Lansing showed me that one of the biggest big government statist lobbies in the business is the public health lobby. It's like out of the movie Demolition Man. Anything that is in their opinion, bad for you, must be outlawed or taxed. We see what's happening with tobacco right now. They pushed to go against firearms in the 1990's with lawsuits against firearms manufacturers. Gubernatorial candidate Virg Bernero pushed for a "pop tax" while in the state senate. (soda's for you on the East Coast, Cokes for you in the South). Granholm had a "meatout" day proclaimed last Saturday. While I'm not to worried about the "meatout" day, since it was just a mouth running, I am concerned about a "meat tax" in the future. The argument will be "50% of our payments are going towards Obesity. Tax carbs and meat to pay for it."

This ain't over with Obama's signature. It's just getting started. I'm not referring to the torches and pitchforks party we need in Washington to repeal this. I'm referring to big government trying to take control of every aspect of our lives.

And howabout this to get Mary Landrieu's vote.

CHAPTER 2--SUPPLEMENTAL GRANTS FOR LOUISIANA, MISSISSIPPI, AND ALABAMA

SEC. 321. PURPOSE.

Grants under this chapter shall be for the purpose of modernizing, renovating, repairing, or constructing public school facilities, including, where applicable, early learning facilities, based on the need for such improvements or construction, to ensure that public school facilities are safe, healthy, high-performing, and technologically up-to-date.

What the hell does that even have to do with health care?

There's plenty more that's bad there. All 2300+ pages of this. This isn't Fox News reporting. This isn't Rush Limbaugh reporting. I don't watch TV News or listen to talk radio. All of this is straight from the bill itself. Primary sources.

This needs to be repealed at best, and modified at worst. We can start with stopping the bleeding with getting rid of the democrats, and then firing Obama's sorry ass in 2012.

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Pete Hoekstra supports a tax increase

We all know Andy Dillon supports higher taxes, but I'm a little disappointed in Hoekstra. He was until this my second choice for governor, and one where I wouldn't have to hold my nose in supporting outside of that one bailout vote that left me a bit sour. Well, now the bailout vote isn't the only thing that has me sour.

From the Detroit News


Beverly Hills -- Two early poll leaders in the Michigan governor's race -- Democrat Andy Dillon and Republican Pete Hoekstra -- found more common ground than differences Friday in a rare joint appearance at Detroit Country Day School.
They agreed term limits block political relationships in Lansing; it takes too long for businesses to get regulatory permits; right-to-work legislation would be too divisive; and the state needs to retool its tax system, including extending the sales tax to services.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Bart Stupak has a primary challenger in Connie Saltonstall (MI-01)

Some good news in MI-01 for republicans. Bart Stupak has a primary race with Connie Saltonstall. With that, the GOP needs to recruit a good candidate for that area, preferably a yooper. Tom Casperson is planning to run for State Senate, but maybe he should give Congress another go with this opening. If not Casperson, perhaps Scott Shackleton.

The pro-abortion left is pumping money into this race. The rich leftists at Huffington Post are going crazy and giving their money to this race. Great. It's win, win for the GOP. Go Connie! For a whole difference reason.

I don't know much about Saltonstall except that she has some election history, and is mad at Stupak for his abortion stance. She was a county commissioner representing the City of Charlevoix. She also ran for the 105th State Rep against incumbent Kevin Elsenheimer. Elsenheimer won overall with 60%. Saltonstall won the City of Charlevoix, Chandler Township, and lost the rest of her home county. She did show strength in Forest Township in Cheboygan County with a tie there, but Elsenheimer won his district easily. It is a Republican leaning district unless one's a blunder machine (like illegally spending county taxpayers money on campaign mailings....) The 105th is possibly the most Republican district that resides in the 1st. Saltonstall did better than most democrats there, but was that due to her campaign, or 08 being a bad year for Republicans.

Apples and Oranges. Why?

1. Different electorate - primary. Right to Life loves Stupak. However, a lot of them lean more republican than they do democrat. Which primary will the pro-life activists vote in? In the August primary, one may vote a Republican ballot or a Democrat ballot. The Republicans and Democrats will both have a gubernatorial primary statewide, and the abortion issue will come up in both parties as Rick Snyder donated tens of thousands to the ballot proposal supporting embryonic research. Andy Dillon has pro-life leanings and Virg Bernero is pro-abortion. Most of the local offices on the yooper side of the bridge lean democrat outside of Chippewa and Mackinac Counties. The troll side is more locally competitive with democrat leaning Alpena, Bay, Ogemaw, and Arenac counties and Republican leaning Otsego, Emmet, and Antrim Counties. The gubernatorial race makes this interesting. Primary voters are more partisan, and will vote for their guys before crossvotes. I've only monkeyed around in one democrat primary (Against Granholm in 02) because usually I have races of my own to vote in

2. Money. Saltonstall has pro-abortion money flying in from the left-roots. She's also from one of the more wealthy areas of the district and can raise more money than most challengers. This will give Stupak some headaches, no matter what the real threat is.

I think this is Stupak's race to lose. He's very popular locally and runs ahead of everybody, especially in the UP. The UP, as well as the sunrise side of the Northern Lower Penninsula, have a lot of social conservative democrats. Pro-life. Pro-gun. Pro-union. The Sheltrown brothers in the SE part of the district. Andy Neumann is pro-gun. The yooper state reps are pro-gun and outside of Prusi in Marquette, I believe they are pro-life. Jim Barcia in Bay City represented part of this area before and he's pro-gun and pro-life.

A large number of the democrats are labor. Corrections officers, retired UAW, Bay City commuters, Alpena, DNR officers, and state workers, along with mining traditions. These aren't your Ann Arbor, California, or even Traverse City democrats. Saltonstall will have to sell to those people, and do so with a Charlevoix address. If I'm running for office in this district, there are four addresses I do not want to be identified with. Charlevoix, Petoskey, Torch Lake, and Harbor Springs. All of them have reputations as wealthy areas with vacation homes. It's not just a yooper vs troll thing, it's inland vs coast. Saltonstall is a native of Charlevoix, so it won't cut against her as much as it would a transplant, but how will that play in the more working class democrat strongholds there like Skidway Lake, Rogers City, Alpena, Standish, and Pinconning?

My money is on Stupak no matter how much money is spent. That said, as a Republican, I won't Saltonstall to win the primary because she will be a much easier general election opponent than Stupak.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

What the hell was the Road Commissioner thinking?

I'm not a tree hugger or an Al Gorean. I do however consider myself a conservationist as a hunter, fisherman, and someone who enjoys the outdoors. I didn't grow up in a concrete jungle, so I understand nature and respect it.

I grew up right near the Brighton Recreation Area in Genoa Twp near the Hamburg Border. One of the roads that goes through that area is Bauer Road which runs between Brighton Rd in Genoa Twp and  Hamburg Rd in Hamburg Twp. South of the subdivision there, it is a wide dirt road that runs alongside Ore Creek, a branch of the Huron River. It's rural, woods, and swamps with almost no people. I drive this area a lot, and oftentimes I don't even see another car on this road. It's a stretch of beauty away from suburbia, and reminds me of the old days in Livingston County.

I'm going to repeat one sentence here before I get to my gripe. It's rural, woods, and swamps with almost no people. So what happened? The Road Commission cut down a bunch of trees on the side of Bauer Road. Thanks guys. I'm not sure if this was the county's call or the DNR's call to make. I'll find out soon enough.

This wasn't a hazard blocking cross-streets. It does open area more to see deer, but this is the woods area, and you should watch for deer there anyway. What this does do is take away some of Bauer's rural character for no good reason.

It's a bad move. Leave that area alone.

Tuesday, March 09, 2010

Waste of Money by the executive branch

I'm sure you all have seen the ads from Census 2010. It's well known that every 10 years, we have the census. Soon the forms will be coming to be filled out. I thought it came in today. Nope.

Instead, I got a $0.44 first class mail telling me the census form will be in approximately one week from today. Thanks a lot. This is a major waste of my tax money. Anybody that is familiar with the costs of political campaigns knows how much mailings cost. This one is no different except that it is at our expense. There are about 110,000,000 households in the US. This .44 mailing adds up. About $48 million in postage alone. That doesn't include about 110,000,000 envelopes, sheets of paper, laser printer depreciation, toners, and labor for that gigantic mailing.

I'll give it one credit. It was quick. It was addressed from Phoenix yesterday, and I got it today.

Other than that, this was a gigantic waste. They should have saved the $50 million plus and just sent the actual census form instead of the one week warning.

This is just one more example why people don't trust Washington DC with their money. $50 million here, $50 million there. Pretty soon, it's up to 13 trillion.

Monday, March 08, 2010

The early bird award goes to Rocky Raczkowski

One of the key things in elections is organization. It is something tough to recognize for those not on the inside of a campaign, or for those who aren't experienced with the nuts and bolts of campaigning. Good organization is essential to a campaign, and can make up for a lot of major deficiencies in some areas, like money or early name recognition. The 2002 Joe Hune campaign was one of the most organized camps I've ever seen to this day. Mike Cox's 2002 campaign was also extremely well organized.

I often check the Secretary of State's office to see the filings. State rep and state senate candidates can either use petitions to file or just pay $100. Most pay the $100. Governor, US Senate, US House, and many local offices require a certain amount of petitions before the May filing deadline to get on the ballot.

With Michael Van Kleeck announcing his withdraw from the ballot to move to Montcalm County and run for the 70th district, Rocky Raczkowski was the first congressional candidate to turn his petition papers in. John Conyers, a 46 year incumbent, also well known for his organization, was the 2nd candidate to turn in his papers.

This is a good showing of organization so far from Rocky's campaign, and it bodes well for his primary and general election. Gary Peters should be concerned.

Elect the AG and Secretary of State

I don't often agree with Mark Meadows. He's the state rep representing East Lansing and was their mayor while I was at MSU. This is an exception. Even more rarer is that this is a constitutional amendment I support.

House Resolution WW. This would place on the ballot a vote for a constitutional amendment to make the Attorney General and Secretary of State a primary election race instead of a convention race. HB 5914 makes the procedures for those two races the same as for the other offices like Governor.

The problem right now with those two offices is that they are nominated by convention. The convention to nominate them is in September after the August primary. That gives them two months to get their name out to the voters. That's not an easy task, and puts them at a major disadvantage as the gubernatorial race gets all the attention.

Another Meadows bill in the elections mold would place on the ballot a constitutional amendment to lengthen house terms to four years and senate terms to six years. I don't support that one. I understand that as a way to lengthen term limits, which are popular with the people, although unpopular with a lot of insiders on both sides of the fence. (I also oppose term limits because it creates 4 year lame ducks to jam unpopular bills through  - like the 04 fee increases).

The election of AG and Secretary of State through primaries is something however I support 100%.

Wednesday, March 03, 2010

(MI-03) - Bill Hardiman and Steve Heacock are in

We officially have a primary on the way in the 3rd district which opened with Vern Ehlers retiring. Bill Hardiman, state senator and former Kentwood mayor has jumped in, and is probably the favorite on paper. The other candidate to jump in is Steve Heacock, a former county commissioner. I don't know much about Heacock. Hardiman is a moderate republican in the mold of Ehlers. Justin Amash jumped in before Ehlers retired and is a strong fiscal conservative.

Sikkema and Land not running probably helps Hardiman. Zandstra not running helps Amash. Will others go for it? This primary will be a very interesting one.

Tuesday, March 02, 2010

Joe Schwarz and Andy Dillon are in

It's an interesting day today. We had the oral arguments of McDonald v Chicago. If I can find audio of that case, I'll be listening to it. If not, I'll settle for the transcript. I want to at least see the text before I comment on the case and the commentators of the case. I won't speculate on the decision.

In gubernatorial news, Andy Dillon is in. If you think Lansing and the house majority is doing a great job right now, vote for Andy. I'm not voting for him. He is better than Joe Schwarz though, but who isn't?

Speaking of the Second Amendment and other issues, Joe Schwarz just won't go away. He's back, and this time running as an independent. He has the exploratory committee out at least. From Politico.



Former Rep. Joe Schwarz (R-Mich.) said Tuesday that he’s forming an exploratory committee to help raise funds and begin building a structure and staff for an independent campaign for governor.

“We’re forming an exploratory committee as soon as possible – my attorney is working on it right now,” Schwarz told POLITICO, adding that it should be finalized within 48 hours. “We’re trying to take this in a logical sequence because this simply hasn’t been done before in Michigan.”
That doesn't get to Schwarz's 2002 campaign stances where he was against the 2nd Amendment, calling the concealed carry supporters "bubba who straps on a 9mm". He voted against it. At another point, he said he didn't have a problem with "Calhoun County" residents with guns, but had a problem with "Wayne County" people with guns. I didn't hear that one first hand, but heard that he made that comment from at least three sources. The bubba quote was on several occasions. Schwarz also called pro-lifers zealots and ripped them in a debate against Posthumus over in Rochester in 2002. I was there. He also at the same even campaigned on increasing property taxes.


We've had budget problems for 10 years. Schwarz was there for part of that and could have helped stop this without tax increases if he chose to do so. He didn't.

The good thing about this is that Schwarz will take more votes from democrats than republicans. He's a more arrogant version of John Anderson. Which republicans will he take votes from outside of Calhoun County? Tax hawks? He supports increases. Gun Owners? They despise him. Pro-lifers? I don't think so? Spending cuts? Nope. Club for Growth went after him for a reason. National defense? Not an issue in a gubernatorial race.

We need change in Michigan. Change does not mean electing an arrogant insider who will try and pass himself off as an outsider. Joe Schwarz is part of the problem. We don't need Lansing elites running the show. I'd frankly prefer more Granholm to this guy, and there's no way I'd give her a 3rd term.