The background is this. Snyder and Granholm are pushing a taxpayer funded new bridge to Canada. It's being opposed by the current private owner of the Ambassador Bridge. Dick Morris is the spokesman for the folks opposed to this.
I don't agree with every speaker a local party has. Now if I became a major power broker in the state, would I go ape over the selection? No. In fact my comments in the past are, "well if he brings in the money" to the party. That's the purpose of these events. I don't agree with Rudy Giuliani on a lot of issues. However, he'd bring a crowd in. I realize that and would be all for him speaking at our events.
Dick Morris was scheduled to speak at two events. It's now one, because of Rick Snyder. Snyder tried to get it to zero, but Oakland County GOP basically said he wasn't going to break a contract with his ticker purchases.
From the Detroit News.
Lansing— Conservative political commentator Dick Morris' June 9 appearance in Metro Detroit has been canceled under pressure, he says, from the Governor's Office.Rick Snyder doesn't have Michigan's best interests in mind either, when he raises taxes, pushes for pork barrel projects with tax money, and pushes to censor views he doesn't like.
He will, however, speak at the Oakland County Republican Party's Lincoln Day Dinner on Wednesday. That appearance, too, was in jeopardy when Gov. Rick Snyder's office urged organizers to rescind their invitation.
"I was scheduled and then I was canceled," said Morris, a former adviser to President Bill Clinton who has switched to the Republican Party. "Apparently free speech has its limits in Snyder's Michigan."
Morris, a Fox News commentator, is a consultant to the Detroit International Bridge Co., which owns the Ambassador Bridge and hopes to build a second privately owned span across the Detroit River. Republican Snyder supports a publicly owned span. Many in his party oppose that plan.
"Obviously the governor's concern was directly related to my opposition to his $2 billion bridge proposal," Morris said.
Tom Stroup, chairman of the 11th Congressional Republican Committee, would only say, "The leadership of the 11th District Committee made a decision to cancel the dinner at this point in time."
Snyder spokeswoman Sara Wurfel didn't deny talking to the two groups. "There was just strong concern that Dick Morris is a hired gun with a divisive agenda who clearly doesn't have Michigan's best interests in mind," she said.
From the Free Press
"I had a friendly conversation with the governor's office. They were concerned that Dick Morris was not the best voice for us," said the Oakland County Republican Party's chairman, Jim Thienel. "But they left all the decision-making to me."
Thienel said it was too late to change plans: More than 400 tickets to the dinner, which also will features conservative activist Andrew Breitbart, have been sold and programs have been printed.
I don't know Jim well, but he didn't get to be Oakland County's chair without using a lot of diplomacy. That's probably one of the two or three toughest chairmanships in the state with all the geographical interests and factions (it's mostly club based). Jim's nicer than I am and isn't going to publicly rip Snyder over this. I'm sure he wasn't happy about it though.
There's a LOT of grumbling about this, and many folks are lukewarm about him at best to begin with. Keep in mind two things. This is right after the pension taxes, which ticked off a lot of people in the party. Snyder also was never the pick of either most of the grassroots (Split between Hoekstra, Cox, Bouchard), nor the establishment (Mostly Hoekstra). Instead, we basically got a guy in views similar to Andy Dillon, except that Dillon's pro-life, and Snyder is not ($2000 donation to embryo research).
Enter the tea party.
Tea party supporters upset with the June 9 cancellation have booked Morris for an alternate dinner the same night.
Dennis Moore, director of the Willow Run Tea Party Caucus in Washtenaw County, is helping organize the Waterford Township dinner. "The governor called and strong-armed them into not having Dick Morris as a speaker," Moore said. "Just because we don't agree with the governor on an issue, does that mean (we should be) quieted?"
Good. From what I've heard, Morris is actually speaking at this event for free. Snyder will love that.