Monday, August 26, 2013

Retakeourgov's Wes Nakagiri challenging Brian Calley

I caught this in an email this morning. Retakeourgov is based in my county, and I've known Wes since 2009 or 2010.

Hartland, MI - Wes Nakagiri, a TEA Party leader from Hartland, Michigan, announced today that he will be seeking the Republican nomination for Lieutenant Governor in 2014.  The founder of RetakeOurGov, Nakagiri has submitted his Statement of Organization to the Bureau of Elections, the first step in forming his campaign committee.
“I am running to bring a conservative voice to the current Lansing administration.  Having a grassroots conservative on the 2014 ticket will energize the base of the GOP to come out and work hard on its behalf.  This energy and enthusiasm will pay dividends up and down the ballot,” said Nakagiri.
It is widely known that a majority in the Republican Party are at odds with major policy initiatives being pushed by the current administration.  “TEA Party Republicans, conservative Republicans, traditional Republicans, and libertarian-leaning Republicans are strongly opposed to the proposed expansion of Medicaid and proposed increase in the gasoline tax,” Nakagiri noted.  “The sentiment among many segments of the GOP is having a conservative, freedom-minded individual in Lansing would be beneficial from both a policy and a political point of view,” continued Nakagiri. 
Nakagiri went on to say, “The expansion of Medicaid is a particular sore spot with many Republicans.  There is no doubt that the expansion of Medicaid is a key component of Obamacare.  Indeed, this expansion is directly at odds with the Republican Party platform.  Many in the party are disillusioned that our executive leadership is going against a key plank in our platform.”
Building on this point Nakagiri added, “Violating the platform is analogous to breaking a contract with the Republican voter.  Our word should be our bond.  When I’m elected as Lieutenant Governor I will not sit passively by when Republican Party leadership promotes legislation that does not coincide with the party’s stated vision.  I will be an outspoken advocate for following the United States Constitution, the Michigan Constitution, and the Republican Platform.”
Nakagiri will be in Lansing this week to urge Senators to vote against the expansion of Medicaid.  A close vote is expected, perhaps even a 19-19 tie.  In the case of a tie the Lieutenant Governor would cast the tie-breaking vote.  To this Nakagiri said, “I can guarantee that if I were the Lieutenant Governor I would be voting against expansion.  It is mind-boggling to many that we as a society would even think about piling more debt on the backs of future generations.  We really need to focus on expanding freedom, not government.”
More information about Wes Nakagiri is available at his campaign website,
This is a little bit less conventional than challenging Snyder in a primary. Traditionally, Lt was just chosen by the governor, and was usually a state senator, as the Lt Gov is president of the senate and a tiebreaking vote. 

I'm reading three things from this.  
1. Wes is trying to put pressure on the legislature to stop Medicaid expansion. That's his big issue.  There are others as well, but that's generated a lot of heat. He would not have announced this now if the issue isn't a major one with grassroots. 

2. Wes wants the tie-breaking vote if applicable. Is that a big deal? It can be. The pension tax was a tiebreaking vote.

3. Wes wants the tea party to have more party influence. Wes will accomplish this just by running. 

Most people don't know how the Lt Governor is elected. It's usually a formality. The governor has his person, and the state delegates confirm it. Can Wes beat Calley? Yes. There's a way he can do it.  

How is this done?

It starts before May next year. People file and run for precinct delegate. What Wes will be doing is to recruit people to run for precinct delegate in the 2014 primary. Historically, precinct delegate positions have been unopposed in Livingston County. That will likely not be the case next year.  In Oakland, there's been contests in most areas for years. 

In August, we will be voting for precinct delegates in the primary along with many major partisan races like Governor, Senator, State Senate, State House, and County Commissioners. 

The precinct delegate candidates who win will be invited to a county convention soon afterward where delegates to state convention will vote on the nominees for Lt Governor (Calley, Wes, or someone else), Attorney General, Secretary of State, Supreme Court (although not other courts), and university trustees. 

After that is the general election, but there's another important election after the major elections - the party leadership elections. There will first be a county party leadership election for executive committee and the officers. There will then be another county convention that elects delegates to state convention where district and state party leadership is elected. 

Are the precinct delegate positions important? Absolutely, since that is where the voter pool comes from for these offices. I expect them to get a lot more attention in more areas than they are used to getting. Some of us might have to run an actual campaign now.  


Thursday, August 22, 2013

Argus says what I've said for years

From yesterday's Argus

The contrast between Livingston and Wayne counties is striking. Livingston has a balanced budget, levies the lowest property tax rate in the state and boasts the highest-possible bond rating — a stature that reflects prudent a prudent spending philosophy as well as providing savings when the county and area townships borrow money to pay for projects.
Wayne County levies a higher tax rate but still is a financial nightmare. It is running a huge deficit. It has underfunded pension obligations. It’s bond rating has been reduced to a tick above that of junk bonds. Its response in part has been to propose a tax hike and blame the state for not giving it enough money.

Where has Wayne County’s money gone? Some of it has gone into ridiculously generous sweetheart deals for those most connected to the highest seats of county power. A Wayne County official in his 40s with less than nine years of service qualified for an immediate $96,000-a-year payout. An economic official who willingly left for a lucrative job running the airport was given a $200,000 severance package — although that was returned when the smelly deal was publicized.

Who spends money like that? Well, obviously, it’s the elected power elite in Wayne County.
Is that the only reason Wayne is in a mess? Of course not. Property values, particularly in Detroit, have fallen sharply, which means that a proposed tax hike would only bring revenues up to higher levels. Wayne County has suffered mightily because of foreclosures as well.

But it is not as though Livingston County doesn’t know the pain of foreclosures and declining property values. The difference is that the county leaders here define their job as managing the county’s finances, as opposed to raiding the taxpayers’ bank account.

I'd go further. Part of the drop in property values in Detroit (and suburbs) are due to job elected officials in Wayne County are doing.  If you elect progressives, you get Detroit. It's a 50 year process, which started when the progressive left (both white and black) took control of Detroit in the 1960's.  62 mill property taxes are a choice. Bad schools and bad school officials don't happen by accident. High crime is tolerated there. Corruption is rampant. These are choices. People choose to live under that - or not. Can Detroit come back? Yes, if Detroiters choose to come back (and start elected better people and not progressives)

McNamara, Duggan, Granholm, Ficano, and Kwame were all cut from the same cloth and the same machine. It is not an accident what happened in Wayne County or Livingston County, which has been mostly Republican for 50+ years.

Elections have consequences.

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Genoa Township tax measure going to the ballot November 2013

This is now official. We'll be having a millage election this November in Genoa Township. 

From the Argus

Genoa Township voters will be asked to approve a 1.5-mill, 15-year tax levy to improve local Livingston County roads on the Nov. 5 ballot.
The township Board of Trustees on Monday approved the proposal’s ballot language, leaving it to voters whether to tax themselves more for roads intended to be fixed with revenue from gas taxes and vehicle-registration fees.
If approved on the November ballot, the owner of a home in Genoa with a market value of $200,000 would pay $150 annually to repair roads that would otherwise be funded with Livingston county Road Commission dollars. One mill is equal to $1 for every $1,000 of a property’s taxable value, which is roughly half of a home’s market value.
The proposal, projected to cover $23 million in local county road improvements, was met with resistance at the board table and from the audience Monday.
Board Trustees Jim Mortensen and Jean Ledford voted against putting the millage question to voters.

And this is what will be covered.

Proposed projects were based in large part on traffic volume and crash statistics at each location, Township Manager Michael Archinal said. Archinal said projects on Crooked Lake, Beck and Latson roads also would help absorb expected traffic spikes from the new Interstate 96 interchange at Latson Road.
Genoa’s plan would fund roadwork in the 2014-2016 road construction seasons, and include paving and reconstruction.
The 2014 construction schedule would include work on Crooked Lake and Latson roads, including a traffic signal at Latson Road and Hampton Ridge Boulevard.
The following year’s efforts would tackle Beck Road and the intersection of Challis and Conrad roads, and include a roundabout at Challis and Bauer roads near the Mt. Brighton ski resort.
The final year of construction would include road repairs and paving on Herbst, Bauer and Hughes roads and the intersection of Cunningham Lake and Bauer roads.

I'll give credit to the trustees for mentioning up front what the plan is on the road tax, but I can tell you right now that paving southern Bauer is a waste of time and money and isn't needed. There's two houses there on that part of Bauer. It's a rural country road. Pine Creek already has paved access on their part of Bauer that is paved through a northwestern entrance (as well as paved access to Brighton Lake and Brighton Rds which are paved) and the folks on Cunningham Lake don't want their road paved. Believe it or not, some people like gravel roads.

Election is November 5th. 

Monday, August 19, 2013

This is absolutely insane (global warming cult wants to wreck the environment)

When it comes to the environment, I deal with the what is, not maybes. I'm not a climatologist, but I do know how to read numbers and I do understand history. If the doomsday CO2 global warming folks want to try to get me on board, get me good measurements for a long period in more areas than a pole, show the causes, and a real solution outside of some bullshit carbon tax/credits that do nothing but make guys like Al Gore and RFK Jr rich while they and their 'environmentally conscientious'
Hollywood buddies live in their mansions and fly on their private jets polluting much more than we do with our 4x4s.

I read this guest USA Today column in the Argus. Frankly, if people actually start doing this stuff in the name of the environment, then they need to be stopped by any means necessary. I've heard similar talk before, including those who want to blow up another Mt Pinatubo type of volcano to promote 'global cooling'. This is modern human arrogance at its worst with the cult of global warming (or 'climate change' as the propagandists use today) which ignores the scientific method. This needs to be stopped by any means necessary. Global warming - caused by CO2, MIGHT be real, and MIGHT be a problem (I'm not convinced it's a bad thing or can be stopped if it is a bad thing). This climate geoengineering plan IS a problem.

From the Argus

Climate geoengineering is the name for the most audacious idea to master nature. Right now, energy companies, scientists, policymakers and even some environmentalists around the world are considering the possibility of attempting to manually override the Earth’s thermostat to counter the effects of global warming.
Geoengineering covers a range of technologies. Some are apparently quite benign, such as painting roofs white so as to reflect solar energy back into space. But, such schemes are also unlikely to have a significant impact on the climate. Those with the greatest current potential also tend to present the greatest risk. The two most often discussed strategies are stratospheric aerosol spraying and oceanic iron fertilization.

The former option would entail spraying sulfur or a similarly reflective compound into the stratosphere via planes or balloons to reflect solar radiation back into space. The projected cost of stratospheric spraying is relatively cheap, in the billions to tens of billions of dollars a year. Proponents argue that scientists could distribute enough reflective particles in the air to return temperatures back to preindustrial levels if we wished.
Oceanic iron fertilization takes its inspiration from the knowledge that algae (which absorb carbon) feed on iron. Consequently, dump iron filings in iron-poor parts of the ocean, and soon you have carbon-absorbing algae blooms. Again, the cost is low.
However, both of these options pose substantial known risks to humans and ecosystems. Stratospheric spraying could substantially reduce precipitation in South and Southeast Asia, potentially shutting down seasonal monsoons that more than a billion people rely upon for growing crops, or imperil replenishment of the ozone layer. Oceanic iron fertilization could result in the proliferation of algae species that won’t support higher order predators, or prove toxic in the marine environment. Moreover, the Earth’s ecology is vastly complex, and both of these technologies may also pose significant unknown risks that are impossible to assess before it is too late.

I'll call this exactly what it is. Dumping on a grand scale.  

You don't master nature. It masters you. History has shown consequences over and over what happens when people try and master nature. It doesn't often work as planned and has unintended consequences. When you build in a floodplain, there's consequences. When you have too many people in the desert (insert Sam Kinison joke), it alters the water supply. When you kill all the predators, the prey are overpopulation, and what they eat is declined, as do other animals dependent on them. When you release a bunch of 20 ft pythons in the Everglades, it causes trouble.

Even so, previous attempts mostly dealt with the what is and not the what ifs. The Erie Canal was a boon to shipping. Ocean ships had access to the Great Lakes in a time of no cars. It also gave us Zebra Mussels in some ship's ballast water 100 years later. Asian carp are threatening the Great Lakes. They were introduced to eat algae in the central US. Unintended consequences occurred. This is what is, not what might be.

Earth is estimated to be 6 billion years old. It has warmed and cooled many times over that period. Humans/proto humans have been a part of earth for about 2.3 million years (if you include 'homo habilis' which not all do), modern humans (homo sapiens) for about 200,000 years, and civilization has been around for around 10000 years largely starting at the end of the last major ice age. Yet, based on temperature reading from 25 years, or even 125 years, our planet is doomed to fry because of supposed man made 'global warming'. 125 years is a drop in the bucket, even if you are a Young Earth Creationist (which I am not) that believes the earth is 6000 years old.

During the dinosaur era, the earth was much warmer than today. Obviously that wasn't human caused since only on the TV cartoon Flintstones did Dino and Fred walk the earth at the same time. It was a different earth then as continents weren't in the same position as today (and they still are moving slowly with plate tectonics - felt as earthquakes). The continental plates have been roughly in similar positions for the last 23 million years, so that's a good measuring point for 'climate change'.

Has climate changed significantly in the last 23 million years? Yes. Does that predate humans? Yes. All forms by 21 million years. There were heavy aquatic extinctions around 14 million years ago with coincided with growth of Antarctic ice sheets. Under the 'current' 'Quaternary' era of the past 2.5 million years, there has been several 'ice ages' and 'warming periods'. One started 2.5 million years ago as ice caps formed grew during that period (remnants of those are still around today at the poles).

There was a heavy warm period around 125k ago warmer than today. Forests were on the North cape of Norway. That's tundra today. Trees were on southern Baffin island (tundra) which is now above the tree line for that area (Northern Quebec currently). Humans were alive then, but as far as we know, mostly hunter gatherers. Following that was the last glacial period of about 100,000 years (until about 10,000 years ago) where the Laurentide Ice Sheet extended to Wisconsin. In the modern period, there was a warm medieval period (900-1250AD - time of Viking movements) and followed by the 'little ice age' (glaciers moved) which ended around 1850 - ironically right before most of the global warming measurements begin. The late 1700's and early 1800's period had some real cold periods, partly due to volcanoes.

I remember Mt Pinatubo. It showed how quickly nature can change weather and potentially climate. A long dormant volcano (500 years) erupted with one of the biggest blasts in the 20th century - much bigger than Mt St Helens in 1980. The next summer was cool. Temperatures barely hit the 70's most of the summer and it was always cloudy.  Other major volcanos have had the same or in some cases more drastic effects.

This geoengineering is bad news, especially over a 'might' and not a what is. It shows an incredible ignorance of history and an arrogance that often backfires.

Thursday, August 15, 2013

I'm not on board with this

Disclaimer - This is my own opinion and not LCRP's opinion. 

It looks like the infamous gas tax plans are DOA for now. However, there's more taxes being discussed.

From the Argus

LANSING — Legislative leaders are getting closer to a deal that would raise $1.2 billion a year needed to fix Michigan’s crumbling roads — but it could mean a hike in the state’s 6 percent sales tax.
Voters could be asked, probably next year, to support an increased sales tax. The plan that seems to be getting the most traction would ask voters to raise the sales tax to 7 percent and revise how the increased revenue is spent.
The top Republicans and Democrats in the Legislature — the Senate’s majority and minority leaders, Randy Richardville, R-Monroe, and Gretchen Whitmer, D-East Lansing, and House Speaker Jase Bolger, R-Marshall, and House Minority Leader Tim Greimel, D-Auburn Hills — have been meeting with Gov. Rick Snyder to come up with a plan to fix the state’s roads.
Snyder’s proposal to raise registration fees and gas taxes was “a nonstarter,” Richardville said Wednesday.
“We didn’t want to touch registration fees or raise the amount that people pay at the gas pump. That’s crazy,” he said.
Currently, the 6 percent sales tax on gasoline purchases raises about $1.2 billion and goes mostly toward schools and cities. Under the new plan, roads would get $1.2 billion, and the increased revenues from a higher across-the-board sales tax would go toward schools and cities.
“Speaker Bolger wants to fix the problem of taxes paid at the pump not all going to roads but doesn’t want to solve one problem by creating another,” said Ari Adler, spokesman for Bolger. “That’s why he is open to ideas on how to address money for schools and local governments through a change in the sales tax.”
The Legislature would vote to put it on the ballot, although two-thirds majorities in the Legislature must agree to put a tax increase on the next statewide ballot. That would take lawmakers off the hook for voting for a tax increase.

While I'm not opposed to putting all of the gas tax to roads, government has not earned more money to spend period. No more tax increases.

Wednesday, August 07, 2013

Parker Wins, Library Millage wins, Whitmore Lake Schools bond crushed

From the Argus

They’re keeping the doors open seven days a week at the Howell Carnegie Library while Don Parker is keeping his Howell-area County Commission seat after Tuesday’s voting.


Parker, a Republican, was appointed to the District 5 Livingston County Commission seat earlier this year to replace Jay Drick, who resigned to become a county District Court magistrate.
He will now serve the remainder of Drick’s term, which expires in December 2014.
Parker, a Howell attorney also served on the board from 2002-2010 and said he would follow in the financial footsteps of his fellow GOP board members.
Democrat Mike Tipton, a Howell Township trustee, and Libertarian Party nominee Michael Brennan were unsuccessful in their bids to crack the all-GOP commission.
“I’m a little disappointed, I thought we’d do a little better,” Tipton said. “It looks like the Republican machine went out and did what it always does.”

It wasn't the "machine." Mike. There wasn't any straight ticket advantage this time with only two things and one partisan race on the ballot. This was old fashion hard work by the Don Parker campaign. Tipton worked hard, but he didn't outwork Don Parker. We didn't take this election for granted. We expected their best and was prepared for it. There would be no "Scott Brown" here. There would be no "Bill Jefferson" here. 

Ont that same note, we've heard a lot about the snide comments from Tipton towards some supporters of Parker. Well, I got one thing to say about that. Keep that trustee seat warm for us in 2016, you won't be getting a free pass this time around.

By the numbers.

Whitmore Lake Schools Bond
Yes - 406 - 31.74%
No - 873 - 68.26%

Howell Library
Yes - 3802
No - 1696

County Commission District 5

Parker Tipton Brennan  WI Total GOP DEM LIB
Howell 1/2 312 214 65 2 593 52.61% 36.09% 10.96%
Howell 3 277 142 22 2 443 62.53% 32.05% 4.97%
H Twp 1/3 250 159 40 3 452 55.31% 35.18% 8.85%
H Twp 2 158 106 27 1 292 54.11% 36.30% 9.25%
Cohoctah 138 86 22 0 246 56.10% 34.96% 8.94%
Total 1135 707 176 8 2026 56.02% 34.90% 8.69%

Howell City

Howell 1/2 312 214 65 2 593 52.61% 36.09% 10.96%
Howell 3 277 142 22 2 443 62.53% 32.05% 4.97%

589 356 87 4 1036 56.85% 34.36% 8.40%

H Twp 1/3 250 159 40 3 452 55.31% 35.18% 8.85%
H Twp 2 158 106 27 1 292 54.11% 36.30% 9.25%
H Twp 408 265 67 4 744 54.84% 35.62% 9.01%

Tuesday, August 06, 2013

Three Elections today in Livingston County

While Detroit is getting the hype for their mayor's race (I hope Mike "Ed McNamara crony" Duggan loses), we have three elections of our own covering Livingston County.

First off, for those in Howell, Howell Twp, and Cohoctah Twp, Don Parker needs your vote. He's done a good job for us in his two stints as commissioner. He's a hard worker and detail oriented. I voted for Don when I lived in Howell and I'd vote for him today if I could.

The other two elections are ballot measures in the Howell Library District and Whitmore Lake School District (part of Green Oak, maybe part of Hamburg)

Howell Carnegie Library:

Shall the limitation on the amount of taxes which may be imposed on taxable property within the Howell District Library District be increased in an amount not to exceed 4/10 of 1 mill ($0.40 on each $1,000 of taxable value) for a period of 20 years, beginning in the year 2013 and ending in the year 2032, inclusive, as new additional millage for the purpose of providing funds for Library purposes? It is estimated that 4/10 of 1 mill would raise approximately $820,000 when first levied in 2013. 

Whitmore Lake School District:
Shall Whitmore Lake Public School District, Washtenaw and Livingston Counties, Michigan, borrow the sum of not to exceed $12,300,000 and issue its general obligation unlimited tax bonds therefor in one or more series, for the purpose of : Partially remodeling, furnishing and refurnishing, equipping, and reequipping school facilities, acquiring, installing and equipping technology for school facilities; purchasing school buses; constructing, equipping and developing and improving athletic facilities and play fields; and developing and improving sites? The following is for informational purposes only: The estimated millage that will be levied for the proposed bonds in 2013, under current law, is 2.50 mills ($2.50 on each $1000 of taxable valuation). The maximum number of years the bonds may be outstanding, exclusive of any refunding, is 20 years. The estimated simple average annual millage anticipated to be required to retire this bond debt is 2.17 mills. (Pursuant to State Law, expenditure of bond proposals must be audited, and the proceeds cannot be used for repair or maintenance costs, teacher, administration, or employee salaries, or other operating expenses.) 

With an off year election, we can not take this election for granted. If we want to keep Livingston County a great place to live, we need to make sure that good leadership stays there. Don Parker is a part of that leadership. We need to retain Don Parker as county commissioner today.

Saturday, August 03, 2013

Interesting recall case in Ann Arbor

There's an interesting recall push down in Ann Arbor School District. I don't know anything about the issues causing the recall so I can't comment on that.

I've always been a supporter for recalls for political reasons. Politicians are our employees and if they are doing that bad of job, they should be recalled. That includes too many bad votes. Recalls are difficult, and should be difficult. If you get enough petitions for a recall, then let's have the election. They should stay a political question determined by voters and not judges.

The Washtenaw Clerk, Larry Kestenbaum (also an attorney), has some interesting statements about a recall petitions against some Ann Arbor School Board members.

From Ann

On the day that Washtenaw County Clerk Larry Kestenbaum is scheduled to determine the clarity and factuality of recall language filed against Ann Arbor school board trustees, he released a statement saying he will refuse to issue any ruling on the factuality of the recall language. 

The new law on recalls requires that the language be 'factual', but how does a County Clerk, County Treasurer, or Judge determine that? Kestenbaum's got some good points in his email which is in the link above at This is the first case here, so there's little case law that applies here.

Kestenbaum said in an email Thursday he has come to the conclusion that the new requirement of factuality in recall language is "unconstitutional on its face."
A new law passed in December 2012 makes it so the petitioner has the burden of factuality when filing recall language.
Kestenbaum said: "The submission of reasons for recall is a procedural, and not a substantive matter. And the targeted official may not impose delay by contesting whether those reasons for recall are 'good enough'." He says that judgement is up to the people and is based in the petitioner's ability to collect the prerequisite number of signatures to force a recall election.
Prior to the 2012 law, the elections commission only had to make a determination on the clarity of the petition language.
"They ruled whether it was clear enough to allow the officer in question to rebut the claims," said county Director of Elections Ed Golembiewski earlier this week.
The board rejected 3-0 the recalls due to lack of clarity, so Kestenbaum's claim can't be tested.

The Washtenaw County Elections Commission Thursday rejected recall petition language that was filed against six Ann Arbor school board members.
The commission voted 3-0 to reject the language on the petition on the basis of clarity. The commission did not take up the issue of whether the language is factual.
The ruling stymied for now the recall effort of the Ann Arbor Public Schools Parents for Change. The parents, who are frustrated by what they say is general dysfunction on the school board, will have 10 days to appeal the decision in Circuit Court. The group also could submit a new petition with revised language.

The rejection was proper. How are these reasons clear? It's all opinions. It's not like it said "John Smith voted on 1-1-13 to raise income taxes 30%"

  • Failure to demonstrate thoughtful consideration of constituent priorities.
  • Failure to demonstrate transparency in decision making.
  • Failure to demonstrate cohesive and singular direction as evidenced by consistent split voting.
  • Failure to provide sufficient backing and support for district superintendent position as evidenced by high turnover rate averaging 2.25 years per term.

Those are vague and don't say anything outside of one person's opinion which can't be measured. Since it didn't pass clarity, there wasn't a need to make a decision on its factuality so that won't be sent to court, at least in this case.

The lesson here for our legislators and those who sign them is this. Consider how these laws will be executed, if they are able to be executed, and who will be the ones executing them in a worst case scenario (Eric Holder or Janet Reno).

Do these board members deserve recall? That's for the voters there to decide if there's clear language and enough signatures. 

Friday, August 02, 2013

You're either in or you're out

I'm getting real tired of this type of talk.

From Bloomberg news
Representative Dave Camp, the chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee, said he would decide by January whether to run for the Senate next year. 

You're either in or you're out. I'm tired of this "might run" or "may run" type of talk I see from so many people speculated as candidates. Run, or don't run. I respect either decision.

 If you show me a half-assed campaign, you'll get half-assed results. If you're not going to jump in with both feet and give it 100% in your campaign - DON'T RUN. Candidates who run a half-way campaign in a Senate race are as bad as a Sharron Angle, Christine O'Donnell, or Todd Akin. They get the same results. They lose. Usually 57-40. Where was Pete Hoesktra last year? Tommy Thompson lost too, to Tammy Baldwin of all people.

After last year, my patience for a bullshit halfway job campaign is done, whether it be a halfway job due to abandonment, laziness, bad advice of consultants, giving up, or running like you are talked into running. Voters respect effort. Whether you agree or not with Joe Hune, he knows how to win and outwork opponents. That gets him votes from independents as well as conservatives. These are things that can always be controlled. Things that can be controlled should be controlled. Self inflicted errors have cost a number of campaigns.

What scares me is this. Some quarters in Lansing are not fans of Terri Land and are recruiting some supposed "big name" to jump in. This is reminding me of Butler, Zandstra, Bouchard in 2006 in some ways. They are in love with the idea of a Dave Camp candidacy for one reason and one reason only. He has a  $3 Million Dollar warchest and has had some elected office. Money is important, but it doesn't guarantee a win. Ask Romney. He was the supposed "electable" (I never thought so - and said he couldn't close the deal long before the loss) candidate because of money. That was one of the crappiest campaigns I've ever seen between Boston's broken promises and the Project Orca clustermuck. Money is important, but decisions in how it is spent is more important. Will Camp knock on doors? Will he spend the hours and hours necessary away from his home base in Midland, and go to places like Ottawa County, the UP, Metro Detroit, Livingston County, and across the whole state? If I ask 100 Republican voters here who Dave Camp is, most will say "Who?" and we border his district.

I met Dave Camp a couple of times, but I don't know him. From what I've heard about him, he doesn't have skeletons, is quiet and isn't offensive. He shows up and does his job. He hasn't had many tough races and never won with less than 61%. That can be encouraging or discouraging. Encouraging is that he's not Todd Akin. What's discouraging is that he (like Hoekstra) hasn't been through the ringer of a super tough general election campaign. His toughest opponent was probably Mike Huckleberry, probably considered a B- team candidate (although an A candidate if the district was Montcalm County) who later went on to win a state rep race for a term. 

Camp is chair of Ways and Means. Does he have the time to run a full bore campaign against a tough opponent in Gary Peters? If the answer is maybe, probably, or "he thinks he can", then he shouldn't run. Camp should only run if he can look in the mirror and then tell his family "I'm in 100%. We will win and do what it takes to do so." If he can honestly do that without trying to make himself believe he can do that, then I have no problem with his candidacy.

One thing I respect about Terri Lynn Land is that she told Mike Rogers "I'll wait until this time." When that date passed, she ran. No mights. No maybes. She's in. We have a candidate here who has announced. She's won statewide twice. If someone wants to run a primary, that's fine. If someone is running because he was talked into running due to a 3 million warchest, then that's not good.

Back in 2002, I always ran into Terri Land on the campaign trail. She was strong in West Michigan, but worked hard out here as well. That was one of the big reasons she earned my support (Lorne Bennett was running as well then). She was a hard worker. She didn't disappear after the election either. There's a lot to be said for that, especially as I live on the other side of the state.

Whoever runs has to outwork Gary Peters by a good margin. If the candidate is unwilling or unable to do that, then that candidate won't win. Peters isn't a pushover.