Saturday, August 30, 2008

Obama supporters need to know their role and shut their mouths on experience

The democrats are trying to throw out the Dan Quayle comparisons. Not even close. Barack Obama can't shine Dan Quayle's boots, let alone Sarah Palin's shoes.
I'm borrowing a lot of this information from two RedState posts with the rest from The Redstate posts are Obama vs Palin vs Quayle by IlGlock and Jeff Emanuel's talk of the tape.
First, on pure numbers, here is the experience factor.

Overall political experience before going on the top of the ticket.
Palin - 12 years before running for VP
Obama - 10 years before running for president.
Quayle - 11 years before campaigning for VP, 19 years total.

If you go with high level experience (governor or us senate)
Palin - 2 years of executive experience
Obama - 2 years as Junior US senator
Quayle - 7 years as Junior US Senator.

If you go with total executive experience on actually running things.
Palin - 8 years, two as governor and six as mayor.
Obama - Nothing
Quayle - 4 years as VP, nothing before then.

We all know what McCain has done in the Senate. What has Obama done in the senate? What kind of change can he bring if elected. If we go by his US Senate record, don't expect much. He hasn't done jackshit so far. He is all talk and no action. Some "change".

During this current Congress, Obama has had THREE things passed in the senate. You can find this at

1. S.RES.133 : A resolution celebrating the life of Bishop Gilbert Earl Patterson.
2. S.RES.268 : A resolution designating July 12, 2007, as "National Summer Learning Day".
3. S.RES.600 : A resolution commemorating the 44th anniversary of the deaths of civil rights workers Andrew Goodman, James Chaney, and Michael Schwerner in Philadelphia, Mississippi, while working in the name of American democracy to register voters and secure civil rights during the summer of 1964, which has become known as "Freedom Summer".

In his previous Congress, we have five things.
1. S.RES.291 : A resolution to congratulate the Chicago White Sox on winning the 2005 World Series Championship.
2. S.RES.516 : A resolution recognizing the historical significance of Juneteenth Independence Day and expressing the sense of the Senate that history should be regarded as a means for understanding the past and solving the challenges of the future.
3. S.RES.529 : A resolution designating July 13, 2006, as "National Summer Learning Day".
4. S.2125 : A bill to promote relief, security, and democracy in the Democratic Republic of the Congo.
5. S.3757 : A bill to designate the facility of the United States Postal Service located at 950 Missouri Avenue in East St. Louis, Illinois, as the "Katherine Dunham Post Office Building".

I can't go before 1989 on thomas, so I can't look up Quayle as a comparison, but Obama's record. That's real presidential leadership for you. Riiiight. Mike Rogers has done more than Obama has, and he's one of 435, not 100. Two bills that wern't resolutions. I don't think naming a Post office and passing a foreign aid bill on Congo are landmark bills. That's the "change" he will bring us.

Who the hell are Obama's people to attack ANYBODY's experience? Sit down and shut your mouth.

Friday, August 29, 2008

Sarah Palin for VP!!! I'm no longer holding my nose in November

Sarah Palin for VP! Great pick by Senator McCain.

This is a risky, but high reward pick for McCain. Overall, I'd give it an A- (and four years from now, an A+). I have to give McCain a lot of credit here for having the guts to make his own pick and not one a lot of the establishment was hoping for (Romney).

From a personal standpoint, Palin was my 2nd choice.....of EVERYBODY. Mark Sanford was my first and would have been the A+ pick (experience edge), but what this does with me is for the first time ever, really get me to vote FOR somebody for President/VP instead of just voting AGAINST the other people.

First, what is bad about this pick? Experience. She has slightly more experience than Obama (although it is EXECUTIVE experience). It is four years two early. That is the ONLY negative. She has 16 years of political experience, (Obama has 12 years total, four in high office counting the last three years he has done nothing but run for president), and eight years in an executive role. In between her time as mayor and governor, she was on the Alaska Oil and Gas Conservation Commission until she resigned in protest over poor ethics by some of the bigwigs...including the then state GOP chair of her state. She then defeated incumbent Frank Murkowski to be governor. Eight years of executive experience is not enough to be PRESIDENT (Although it is two years more than Bush and eight years more than Obama), however this is VICE president, and a VP can afford some on the job training. McCain can show her the ropes on what she doesn't know, and her experience in executive office will help her learn quickly.

What is GOOD about this pick? Several things.

1. Real change requires real change. Obama talks about change. What has he done in the Senate outside of TALK about change? Absolutely NOTHING but piggyback off of other senators. Obama talks about cleaning up Washington. Palin HAS cleaned up political messes of others. She defeated an incumbent mayor over tax issues, and then lowered property taxes. She resigned from the Oil and Gas commission because of ethics of her own party members. She then ran for governor and took out the trash there. She fought against pork spending and passed an ethics bill. She talked, and then delivered. Currently she's pushing for energy reform in Alaska, including a new Natural Gas pipelines and fighting Congress for not drilling in ANWR to increase our oil supply here at home.

2. Solidifies a fractured base. Fiscal conservatives are important again. After Bush crapped on us for eight years, we have two people with REAL records against pork barrell spending. McCain is decent on this issue, and Palin is great on this issue. McCain has problems with trust among gun owners. Palin alleviates many of those doubts and is the most pro-2nd Amendment candidate on a major ticket since Teddy Roosevelt. You won't hear any "can I get me a huntin' license" types of blunders from Palin. She's the real thing. And on the life issue, Palin walks the walk on being pro-life more than just about anybody (although John McCain's record is quite good on that issue...he's walked the walk too and more than just by voting records). McCain came through for us with this pick.

3. The Outsider. Obama talked about change and gave us a 30 year career hack whose only claims to fame is lifting other speeches, writing a gun grabbing bill, and being a self-proclaimed foreign policy expert (how so anyway?). Outside of political junkies and Delaware, nobody knows who Joe Biden really is. Palin is the only major party candidate not to come from Washington and its 17% approval rating. Washington doesn't change Washington easily.

I didn't mention the obvious here that can cut both ways. McCain named a woman to the ticket. How will that play? I don't know. I think it can gain some votes and lose others. It doesn't effect my vote. However she's very easy on the eyes, so I won't be changing the channel on my TV set when she's on there, unlike the normal reaction I have with politicians. That can't hurt.

Would I support this pick if Todd Palin was the governor of Alaska with the same record, and if Sarah Palin was the oil rig worker and fisherman instead? Absolutely. I can say that without a shadow of a doubt.

I support people who walk the walk in their politics. It is extremely rare, and it is even rarer when one is a governor, and rarest of all when one is tapped to be VP. None walk the walk better than Governor Sarah Palin. That's why I'm no longer holding my nose this November. I'm not just voting against Obama and Biden anymore. I'm voting for Sarah Palin.

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Several Updates - Deer troubles, Recount in danger, abortionist charged, Target Counties

It's a busy week, so I'll condense all of this into one post.

First off, a real scumbag got charged in this. From the Detroit News:

A 12-count warrant has been issued against a Lathrup Village abortion clinic accused of improperly disposing of medical records, according to Southfield's 46th District Court.

The clinic, WomanCare, came under police and state investigation last spring when an anti-abortion group reported finding medical records and biomedical waste in Dumpsters outside the facility on Southfield Road. Authorities soon came and hauled away blood-soaked gauze and surgical instruments that were in the trash.

"It's really troubling for so many reasons," said Deborah Carley, chief deputy prosecuting attorney for Oakland County.

Secondly, we have bad news from Kent County. Chronic Wasting Disease is found at a deer breeding facility. Hopefully, it doesn't hit the wild population. From the DNR

LANSING - The Michigan departments of Agriculture (MDA) and Natural Resources (DNR) today confirmed the state's first case of Chronic Wasting Disease (CWD) in a three-year old white-tailed deer from a privately owned cervid (POC) facility in Kent County.

The state has quarantined all POC facilities, prohibiting the movement of all - dead or alive - privately-owned deer, elk or moose. Officials do not yet know how the deer may have contracted the disease. To date, there is no evidence that CWD presents a risk to humans.

DNR and MDA staff are currently reviewing records from the Kent County facility and five others to trace deer that have been purchased, sold or moved by the owners in the last five years for deer and the last seven years for elk. Any deer that may have come in contact with the CWD-positive herd have been traced to their current location and those facilities have been quarantined.

"Michigan's veterinarians and wildlife experts have been working throughout the weekend to complete their investigation," said Don Koivisto, MDA director. "We take this disease very seriously, and are using every resource available to us to implement response measures and stop the spread of this disease."

CWD is a fatal neurological disease that affects deer, elk and moose. Most cases of the disease have been in western states, but in the past several years, it has spread to some midwestern and eastern states. Infected animals display abnormal behaviors, progressive weight loss and physical debilitation.

Current evidence suggests that the disease is transmitted through infectious, self-multiplying proteins (prions) contained in saliva and other fluids of infected animals. Susceptible animals can acquire CWD by direct exposure to these fluids or also from contaminated environments. Once contaminated, research suggests that soil can remain a source of infection for long periods of time, making CWD a particularly difficult disease to eradicate.

Michigan's First Case of Chronic Wasting Disease Detected at Kent County Deer Breeding Facility: "Currently, one of our top concerns is to confirm that the disease is not in free-ranging deer," said DNR Director Rebecca Humphries. "We are asking hunters this fall to assist us by visiting check stations to allow us to take biological samples from the deer they harvest, so we can perform adequate surveillance of the free-ranging white-tailed deer herd in the area."

Deer hunters this fall who take deer from Tyrone, Solon, Nelson, Sparta, Algoma, Courtland, Alpine, Plainfield, and Cannon townships will be required to bring their deer to a DNR check station. Deer taken in these townships are subject to mandatory deer check.

The DNR is also asking hunters who are participating in the private land five-day antlerless hunt in September in other parts of Kent County to visit DNR check stations in Kent County so further biological samples can be taken from free-ranging deer for testing. The DNR is in the process of finding additional locations for check stations in Kent County to make it more convenient for hunters.

The deer that tested positive at the Kent County facility was a doe that had been recently culled by the owner of the facility. Michigan law requires sick deer or culled deer on a POC facility be tested for disease. The samples from the Kent County deer tested "suspect positive" last week at Michigan State University Diagnostic Center for Population and Animal Health, and were sent to the National Veterinary Services Laboratory in Ames, Iowa last Thursday for confirmatory testing. The positive results of those tests were communicated to the state of Michigan today.

Audits of the facility by the DNR in 2004 and 2007 showed no escapes of animals from the Kent County facility were reported by the owner. Also, there were no violations of regulations recorded during the audits.

Since 2002, the DNR has tested 248 wild deer in Kent County for CWD. In summer 2005, a number of those deer had displayed neurological symptoms similar to CWD; however, after testing it was determined the deer had contracted Eastern Equine Encephalitis.

More information on CWD is available on Michigan's Emerging Diseases Web site at

Macomb and Oakland Counties are going to be big targets for both campaigns this fall. A Democrat polling firm has the county race at 46-39 McCain. That's early to tell, but if McCain can take Macomb by 5-10%, he's in good shape. Oakland is also a major battle. and the Detroit News covers that. I'll have more on both counties later on. I think Obama's personality, lack of experience, and extreme radical views will not play well in Macomb County. Oakland will be a more split area I think. It's one of the most misunderstood counties in the state.

Oakland County is a geographically split county that is be divided in to about four sections (to be simplistic).

Southeast - Inkster Rd east to Dequindre, and from about 13-14 mile southward. This is the main Democrat Base. Southfield leads the way with a 30,000 vote cushion for the Democrats. Lathrup Village, Oak Park, and Southfield are the mostly black areas. The rest of it is white social liberals (outside maybe Hazel Park which is also democrat) in Ferndale, Huntington Woods, Pleasant Ridge, Royal Oak, and Madison Heights.

Pontiac/Auburn Hills/Waterford - Pontiac is the other Democrat base. Auburn Hills leans that way and Waterford is competitive.

Central Oakland/Money area - Overall competitive. The Bloomfields(Not West Bloomfield), Birmingham, Troy, Franklin, Bingham Farms and Rochester areas are mostly Republican leaning, but not overwhelmingly so. West Bloomfield and Farmington Hills lean Democrat.

Outer areas - West of I-275 or about 3 miles north of M-59. On the West, South Lyon, Milford, Highland, Commerce, White Lake. On the North Lake Orion, Oxford, and Clarkston areas. That is the Republican base, and Bush ran up big numbers here (outside Novi) while he struggled in the rest of the county. It is a mix of suburban and semi-rural areas that are mostly residential.

That's a simplistic diagram of Oakland County, but a good starting point if someone really wants to analyze our neighbors.

The Brighton Township Recount I can't see going anywhere. A good source sent me a copy of Geri Harmon's recount request.

Now what's wrong with this picture?
1. It does not mention the office requested for the recount. All 10 precincts for what office?
2. What is the "error?"

Now I've heard a few other things as well that makes me think this won't get off the ground. I want to verify by primary source first (non 2ndhand/3rdhand) however, before I post it here.

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Recounts in Livingston County

The Argus reports that there are two recount challenges. One I understand, but the other sounds like nothing more than sour grapes.

The recounts target the Brighton Township treasurer's race and the Conway Township trustee race.

Incumbent Brighton Township Treasurer Geri Harmon lost by 60 votes to challenger Lana Theis.

Joan Runyan, county elections coordinator, said Darlene Harmon, the daughter of the defeated treasurer, filed the request for a recount Wednesday. She said the reason written on the petition was "error."

Runyan said Harmon is requesting a recount of all 10 precincts, which includes absentee ballots. She said Harmon paid $100, which covers the $10-per-precinct charge for a recount.
In Conway Township, challenger Lorianne Swails lost by three votes to incumbent Eric West. The two incumbents, West and Larry Parsons, won re-election in the race where three people were vying for the two positions. Parsons was the top vote-getter, and West was second.

Runyan said Swails filed the recount request, stating on her petition that she lost by only three votes.

Three votes I can certainly understand. 60 votes in one township? That's tough. There were 1630 total votes there. 60 votes there is three or four percentage points.

Going by precinct.

I think Ms. Harmon is wasting her time and both her and the township's money here, but it is her right. These were the precinct numbers, as shown by the County Clerk's office.

Brighton Twp 1 - Harmon 113 Theis 114 (East Central, near Kensington)
Brighton twp 2 - Harmon 38 Theis 74 (Northwest)
Brighton Twp 3 - Harmon 126 Theis 125 (South Central)
Brighton Twp 4 - Harmon 86 Theis 89 (Central)
Brighton Twp 5 - Harmon 33 Theis 35 (Southwest and along I-96)
Brighton Twp 6 - Harmon 106 Theis 114 (Northwest/central)
Brighton Twp 7 - Harmon 87 Theis 68 (Northeast, closer to Milford)
Brighton Twp 8 - Harmon 75 Theis 101 (Southeast near Kensington)
Brighton Twp 9 - Harmon 120 Theis 124 (Most of Woodland Lake)

For clairification, Brighton 2 and 8 were either Lana's home precinct or Tom Murphy's home precinct, and they both ran as a quasi-team.

Overall, I think that's going to be real tough to make up.

Friday, August 15, 2008

We have some more November contests

The Argus reports that six write-in candidates received enough votes in the primary to get on the ballot.

Dave Buckland is probably their strongest candidate based on candidate experience and previous showings. He got the nomination for the County Commission district and had a respectable showing in 2006. It was a 55-45 district and 800 vote margin in 2006. This district is Hamburg township minus Hamburg 3. Dolan has seemed to avoid the controversies in Hamburg (as his son won a trustee position there.) However, the dems want this bad as they haven't held a seat since Jake Donohue did it in I believe the early 1990's. My money is on Dolan, but I do not expect the race to be a gimme.

For Hamburg Township Clerk - Debby Buckland will be facing Matt Skiba
For Hamburg Township Treasurer - Linda Taylor will face Pat Evon.
For Hamburg Tristee - Shannon Piper will face Michael Dolan, Bill Hahn, Chuck Menzies and Philip Semprevivo.

The question is whether with the house cleaning in Hamburg, is the infighting over. If the winner was all three incumbents, all winning by 50 votes, then I would have bet on the democrats. That was not the case, and all incumbents are gone. The primary I think made things tougher for the dems. However, do Pat Hohl (unopposed), Matt Skiba, and Pat Evon realize what happened and work to put this behind them? Do the outgoing incumbents provide a smooth transition? If the answer is yes, then I think we hold these seats. If not, then the papers will have a big story about an "upset" in November. Nobody wants to read about their township in the paper every day. Two of the newcomers I think are real strong candidates in Pat Evon and Bill Hahn. I'm not worried about them. One other candidate however concerns me. I won't say who it is in public, but I wasn't that impressed with that individual in the candidate forum. With the current situation, none of these are gimmes, but one of these actually scares me a bit.

Matt Evans got on the ballot the hard way and will face Mark St Charles. The question here is which Matt Evans will show up? The guy who got disqualified on petitions, or the guy that held a legend in Jack LaBelle to under 60% in 2006? Green Oak has a lot of local issues, and that will decide this contest. The Dems keep knocking on the door in Green Oak, but it's been a while since then won here. Green Oak is never an area to take for granted however.

Michael Porath faces Ron Rau for Putnam Supervisor. Putnam always votes on their local politics, and it doesn't matter who is at the top of the ticket. Local Democrats sometimes survive Republican top of the ticket landslides there. I expect the battle there be rural v development. This will probably be the toughest contest for the GOP, as dems do win sometimes in Putnam Township, and they held the super's position as recently as 2004, despite Bush winning big there.

Many will talk about coattails. I'm not a big believer in coattails unless you get 60% at the top of the ticket in your locality, extreme cases. Even then the 1998 massacure of Geoff Fieger didn't caust that many races to flip. In 1990, John Engler won big here in Livingston County, but Richard Austin and Frank Kelley also won - the last two democrats to win here countywide.

In short, we shouldn't panic but we do need to be prepared at home, and make sure our local candidates are supported without depending on John McCain to carry them or Barack Obama to sink the opposition. The Livingston County Republican Party needs to remember the first two works in their name. I think this year, unlike some years, this will happen.

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Kwame Kilpatrick and Detroit

I'm only referring to Kwame Kilpatrick's tenure as mayor here, not his pending court case. He is innocent till proven guilty there, and deserves his day in court as any of us would.

Apologies to my family members and others in Detroit who didn't vote for hizzoner, but I don't have a lot of sympathy for Detroit's problems caused by their mayor. Detroit as a whole made its choice. It voted for him twice, once over Gill Hill and once over Dennis Archer's protege in Freman Hendrix. This is also the same city that elected Coleman Young for twenty years. It is the same city that re-elects its school board time and time again. Detroit has the potential to be once again a world class city, but not if these individuals stay in power. Not all the problems in Detroit are self-inflicted, but many of them are controllable situations. Many of the same OUTSIDE factors that affect Detroit affect the rest of the state.

Some people, mostly white suburbanites, are telling Granholm that she needs to remove Kwame Kilpatrick from office through a little known clause. I think that would be a very poor decision. Right now, Granholm is handling this the right way and letting things there take care of itself. I oppose an outsider - and by that I mean any individual who does not live in the CITY of Detroit, dictating to them how to handle their officials. The counter argument by many is that what happens in Detroit affects the state and that Detroit is the face of Michigan to the rest of the country. That may be true, but what happens all over the state effects the state, whether it be Detroit, or here in Livingston County. As for it being the face of Michigan, so what. Market the other areas of this state which is a lot more than just Detroit (Up North for starters). If you want to change things in Detroit and get them a new mayor, move back there. Houses there are cheap.

I also opposed the state's then takeover of the Detroit Public Schools as well. The state can not bail out (not that it's competent enough to do so) or micromanage them. It doesn't work (didn't work with the schools), mainly because it creates more resentment between Detroit and suburbia. It also does not force Detroit to fix itself, which it has to do to make a comeback outside of Downtown.

Now I'm not one of these people who say that everything in Detroit is bad. It's not. Downtown (and Greektown) is in good shape. Downtown even has a lower crime rate than many suburbs. Two of their public High Schools are as competitive as the suburban schools. Much of the archetecture there is still better than what is built today. Palmer Woods and Indian Village are still strong solid neighborhoods. Then there is the stuff we all know about and hear over and over again. Crime away from Downtown, most of the schools, higher property taxes than Grosse Pointe, poor city services, corruption. That aspect of Detroit is what needs to be changed. Only limited amounts of that can be done from non-Detroiters. The bulk of the work needs to be done in the city, by putting competent individuals in charge.

So should Kwame resign or be removed from office? That's for the Detroiters, and only Detroiters to decide. I'll just concern myself with who runs Livingston County.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Update on Constitutional Convention (Con-con) debate

I posted here my strong disapproval for a Constitutional Convention which is being pushed by some influential and powerful individuals.

One major question and point raised by Chet Zarko was the campaign finance regulations and how delegate elections were affected by them. I quote my summary and Chet's quote (which is in italics)

In the Right Michigan post, I also missed one reason more than any other why it needs to be opposed. Outside Lansing and Oakland Politics blogger Chetly Zarko pointed it out. He said this.

I agree with RM here, with this addition, copied from my response to DL on his item.
The RMGN debacle is evidence of what bad can come from convention.

Special interests will own the delegates, particularly since the Dems are sitting on the reform Marty Knollenberg proposed in Oct. 2007 that I pointed out to him last year. The Michigan Campaign Finance Act of 1977 forgot - understandably due to the rareness of conventions - to include delegates in reporting category defintions. And limit definitions.

Democrats - I'm calling Ward Connerly if there's a convention and there no law to say he can't give me one giant donation, which I'd never have to report. And I will run if there is a Con-Con, despite my hatred for it - largely to protect MCRI, but also to protect the initiative process, Headlee, and all that the people have earned in the last 40 years in at least marginally checking government excess.

Republicans - Stryker nightmare.

It's not individual candidates that evade the radar - its the potential for competing blocs of "sponsored" candidates. A Herculean battle would occur.

You think the raw costs of a convention in terms of administrative costs, staff, space, etc. are high. The political costs, and the subtle changes that can only ultimately favor the elite power interests since they are best positioned, are huge.

Fight both the Con RMGN and the Con of the Con-Con.

That is something I missed completely and is why it the word assume makes an ass of "u" and me. I assumed these are covered by the campaign finance laws. Nope. Billionire radical Jon Stryker can dump his billions into these races without anyone knowing. He can also call his sister out of state so she can dump her billions. All the Lansing and DC interests can dump their money, and George Soros himself could dump money in there, without any one of us knowing about that. All those that want to increase our taxes, earmark spending, grab our guns, criminalize certain speech (Colorado just did it), and do whatever they can think of can get their people in there.

If "Hell No" was an option on this constitutional convention, I would vote for it. I'll have to settle for "no." The prospects of what can happen at the constutional convention are about as frightening as facing the business end of a gun.

A friend of mine, who does not wish to be named, sent a letter to Secretary of State's legal team asking the following questions and wanted a declaratory ruling or if that wasn't possible, an advisory opinion known as an "interpretive statement." These were his questions.

Questions Presented For Declaratory Ruling
1.) Is the office of state constitutional delegate a “state elective office” under the Michigan Campaign Finance Act?
2.) Does the Michigan Campaign Finance Act cover candidates for constitutional convention delegate?
3.) What would the applicable contribution limit be to candidates for constitutional convention delegate?
4.) Are monies spent to support or oppose the election of a constitutional convention delegate “expenditures” and “contributions” under the Michigan Campaign Finance Act?

Constitutional convention delegates are not mentioned in the campaign finance law by statute. It was overlooked due to the rarity of conventions. There are outside technicalities that could impact, but we don't know unless the Sec of State or statute handles this.

Unfortunately, there was no declaratory ruling, or even an interpretive statement by the Secretary of State's office. The reason giving on the declaratory ruling was that my friend was not an "interested party." It is similar to the standing issue in court. They considered the request premature as there is no convention.

Here's the problem with that. The primary (if one) for delegate will happen three months after November and the general in the May after that (Elections are only four day a year - February and May are the only possible months). There is no time for a ruling then while everyone has their campaigns and is adjusting to the rules. It's better to know the rules ahead of time since the race for delegate will start immediately. I with the Sec of State issued at least a advisory opinion, if not a ruling.

Maybe someone should form a candidate committee for delegate in early 2010 in anticipation (or immediately if the legislature votes to put it on the ballot) and then ask for a ruling. The treasurer and candidate would then certainly be an interested party.

In the meantime, let's not have to deal with this hypothetical and vote no on any Con-con and it's possible unintended consequences of tax increases, bringing back race preferences, and God knows what else as literally everything would be on the table.

Elections Report and November Preview

Nothing new regarding the write in candidates who are trying to get on the November ballot. That could make things interesting in Hamburg and Green Oak.

Look at detailed numbers in the primary.
47th District - Cindy Denby won every muncipality except Hartland. Charlie Aberstauri won every Hartland precinct except one where he tied for the lead. He's a school board member there, and Hartland has avoided a lot of major controversial news stories, so that is not a real shocker.
66th District - Bill Rogers won all precincts except Genoa1. I think that was Corosanite's home precinct. Jason won there. On the democrat side, Donna Anderson won all Livingston County Precincts over Tom Crawford. I'm not sure about the Milford side, but Anderson won Milford as well.

County Commish4 - This was a close race between Fowlerville's Douglas Helzerman and Iosco's Ronald Van Houten. Handy Township went big for Helzerman, but the rest of the county away from his Fowlerville base went for Van Houten. This was a homer based vote.

Brighton Township - Tom Murphy won all precincts. Lana Theis and Geri Harmon split most of the precincts close to 50/50, but precincts 3 and 8 carried the day.

In Hamburg Township, the winners of the officer positions won all precincts except in the Supervisor's race. Cindy Pine won Hamburg 1 and Hamburg 7.

In Green Oak, one of the incumbent trustees had the lowest number of votes. I'm not sure why, since I haven't heard anything particulary negative about him. George Kilpatrick. Then it dawned on me. Did he lose because of an unfortunate last name, sharing it with the Detroit mayor? I voted for him, not that it matted all that much. I hope it wasn't because of his name. That's a dumb reason to vote for or against someone.

For November, the contested races in Livingston with candidates on the ballot are these:
State Rep:
47th District - Cindy Denby v Scott Lucas
This one looks over before it starts. Scott Lucas already has a failure to file notice against him for not turning in his pre-primary report. This looks like a repeat of Hune-Senkowski in 04 unless things change rather quickly. Unforced sloppy errors. It goes along with the too many men on the ice/field penalties in hockey and football. Games are lost because of that. So are jobs. Ask Don "Grapes" Cherry back from his days with the Boston Bruins.

66th District - Bill Rogers v Donna Anderson
While Bill Rogers is the odds on favorite to win, I don't expect Anderson to make the mistakes that Lucas is making. Her reports are by the book, and even got the often missed "Late Contribution Reports" in. I expect Bill to win, but Anderson may make him work for it. I don't expect Bill to take this race for granted though, going back to a 2002 race that wasn't at all close in the end, but scary enough on the ground for a few of our campaign junkies to notice.

County Commission 1 - Maggie Jones v Pam Green
That district is probably the most Republican in the county. Green isn't a bad candidate, but that's tough going there. There are a couple of districts where I think the dems could make a decent run, but not this one barring a major mistake by the incumbent AND a great run by Green.

County Commission 3 - Dave Domas v Adrian Campbell Montgomery
That district is probably the 2nd or maybe 3rd most Republican in the county. I expect Montgomery to make a spirited run, but being tied with the infamous Michael Moore is not good for one's political prospects around here. I mean, it's Michael Moore. Unless she distances herself from him and becomes more than a star in one of his psuedo-documentaries, this one is already over.

Green Oak:
Clerk - Michaek Sedlak v Walt Ernst
Trustee - Tracey Edry, Wally Qualls, Rollin Green, and Richard Everett v Anna Ernst and JoAnn Murphy

Green Oak is fairly competitive compared to most of Livingston County. Democrats have won here in the past, although 2006 aside (When the GOP won narrowly), there has been a right turn here. The father and daughter Ernst team as well as Jo Ann Murphy are legitament candidates and will likely get a lot of Sierra Club support as they are stronger in Green Oak than they are elsewhere.

Handy Township:
Trustee - Gordon Munsell and Erik Fraser v Robert Redinger (Incumbent)
This one could be interesting. Redinger had a free pass in 06 and won unopposed. He's also backed a Republican in Cindy Denby for state rep. That's not because Cindy is a liberal republican. She's not. She is the current Handy Township Supervisor though and they have worked together in the past and are part of a tight knit community. Fowlerville has a large number of conservative independent voters. Will they split their tickets. I think Redinger has a shot if straight tickets don't do him in. His problem is that a major league leftist is on top of the ticket. The Fowlerville area is tight knit, and that's in his favor.

Putnam Township:
Trustee - Richard McCloskey (current Treasurer) and Keith Chambers v Kevin Dobis (Incumbent) and Frank Gazdecki
Putnam has it's own local politics separate from a lot of the partisan battles. "Keep Putnam Rural" was a bipartisan ticket in 2004. I expect those issues to dominate again in 08. Putnam Township is historically competitive as well, no matter how lopsided the top of the ticket can be as John Kerry didn't effect the local ticket here.

Unadilla Township
Trustee - Julie Weiland and Warren Krueger (Incumbent) v Lori Cowan (Incumbent) and Kelly Schmidt
I don't know much about Unadilla Township (Gregory) except that it is rural and usually competitive. Krueger and Cowan are the likely winners here.

There are two other interesting races. Jay Drick is running again for judge against Theresa Brennan. There was some rumbling about Brennan being asked to run for the Supreme Court justice position, but last I heard secondhand is that this is not going to happen. I'm glad Jay is running, because at worst case scenario, she would have to give up her district seat if she is running for that spot. Politics are limited on a district court level. At appeals court or supreme court, politics should be limited, but we all know that is not the case.

Howell Schools elections are now in November. Three positions are open. Eight people are running for two positions, and two people are running for the partial term.

The candidates for the positions:
4 year terms:
Michael Yenshaw - Appointed incumbent
Mark Michaels - Appointed incumbent
Bob Parker - former judicial candidate and former Howell mayor
Patricia Howle
Doug Moore, who ran in 2007
Olav “Kris” Kauserud
Ann Routt
Phillip Arrington

For the two year terms
Dan Fondriest - Appointed incumbent, ran in 07
Debi Drick

This race in Howell schools should be different than others. First, it is in November and the turnout will be much higher. Secondly, with a new super in charge of administration there, the dynamics are different. That super was approved unanimously.

The thing to remember is that there are two races here. One for the regular seats and a seperate election for the partial term. Either Fonriest or Drick will win that seat. I'm interested in who the Concerned Taxpayers Group's PAC endorses. I probably won't be on the panel this November due to time constraints, but I still trust their judgment. I haven't followed Howell schools as much though since moving out of the district.

While most races are decided already, there are some contests here in the fall. The most contested should be the Howell Schools race along with Putnam and Unadilla contests.

Wednesday, August 06, 2008

Tuesday Primaries

I don’t have time for a super detailed post right now. That will likely happen this weekend.

First off, turnout was poor. 17.32% of the voters decided elections in Livingston County. Compare that to 70-some% in 2004.

Some primary results:

State rep wasn’t that close. Bill Rogers and Cindy Denby won easily for the Republicans. Donna Anderson won easily for the dems. Somehow Tom Crawford got 33% for the dems by putting his name on the ballot. Somehow Josiah Goyt got 33% of the vote in one of the GOP County Commissioner primaries despite dropping out due to a new job and telling the papers that he dropped.

Hamburg – Incumbents got sent home. It did not matter which faction a candidate was identified with. We have a new township supervisor, clerk, and treasurer in Hamburg. Only one incumbent survived, Chuck Menzies, a trustee. The voters had enough of the situation. While the candidates seemed to run on a slate or a quasi-slate, the voters do not choose candidates based on the slates. They don’t care about that stuff.

Unadilla Township will also have a new supervisor. I didn’t follow what happened out there, but Linda Walker ran a respectable judicial campaign a couple of years back. She’s now their new supervisor.

Brighton Township – The treasurer got sent home. Lana Theis, a strong fiscal conservative defeated the incumbent and will be the new Brighton Township treasurer. Tom Murphy won the supervisor’s spot. Good results for the most part there, although I was hoping Chuck Moran would win too.

Genoa Township – In normally quiet Genoa Township, Tom Rafferty ran respectable in his supervisor race against Gary McCririe. That one caught me a bit by surprise.

County Commissioner – Ronald Van Houten survived a strong challenge out of Fowlerville. He defeated Doug Helzerman by 63 votes.

4th Appeals judge was a name recognition race. Michael Kelly and Paula Manderfield win it. Both were democrats, although this race wasn’t “democrat vs republican” Neither were my top two choices. I’m undecided in that race now between one of them or leaving it blank. Sorry Mike, I don’t vote just based on you having an Irish last name.

In the 13th, Kwame’s mom leads, but Mary Waters does not concede. This one is closer than I thought, and I’d love to see the vote breakdowns based on Detroit neighborhoods, Grosse Pointe, and especially the democrat Downriver area. Carolyn Kilpatrick only had 39% of the vote. Mary Waters 36%. 39% wins are weak for incumbents.

Monday, August 04, 2008

Primaries - Where the election is usually decided

About 20% of the voters make most of the decisions in the community. In most parts of this state, the primary is the election. That's not just true for most of Livingston County, but in most of this state. In Detroit, Flint, Ann Arbor, Lansing, and much of the UP, the big election is on the Democrat primary. In most of Livingston County, much of rural lower Michigan, the election is in the Republican Primary.

While the November election gets all the hype with the presidential race, most things are decided tomorrow. Barring major upsets, we will know tomorrow who our next state representative and township officials outside of Unadilla, Putnam, and Green Oak townships). There's also an important judicial election in the 4th District Court of Appeals in this state, and we need to make sure our higher courts continue to be a role model for the rest of the country. Eric Doster will be the best choice there.

I'll be tied up for awhile, so I may or may not be able to get a post in about the primary afterward. Don't forget to inform yourself about the races if you haven't. Then after you are informed, vote.

Friday, August 01, 2008

Eric Doster for Judge (Michigan Court of Appeals, 4th Circuit)

The most important race on the primary ballot is the least known race. There is one judicial election this August (Jay Drick and Theresa Brennan are on the November ballot only this year). Now the comment I made that was so controversial for a district court race in 2006 is that liberal judges on the district and circuit level are future candidates for the Court of Appeals. We have one left leaning circuit judge out in Lansing who is trying to do just that in this very race, and she wants to replace a conservative. We need to make sure the courts are referees and not the 4th legislative branch.

When it comes to the Court of Appeals, we need judges who would interpret the law and not make it. It is in most cases, the court of last resort as most cases do not go to the Supreme Court. While the Supreme Court rulings are binding on the Court of Appeals, there is incredibly leeway for judicial decisions as noticed by the differences between the ultra leftist US 9th Circuit (nicknamed the 9th Circus) epidomized by legend Stephen Reinhardt, and the 5th Circuit which is fairly conservative. Bill Schuette, a believer in judicial restraint, is stepping down from the 4th Circuit.

[b]Eric Doster[/b] would be the best choice for Bill Schette's replacement and would not be a radical change on that court. He's had 20 years of practice at all types of law at the largest law firm in the district (Foster, Swift, Collins & Smith). He's a member of the Federalist Society and would not be a judicial activist. I happen to know Eric, and he's a good man, even tempered, and a good attorney who knows the law and will make a good judge.

Eric Doster would be the best choice for the Court of Appeals.