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5 Examples Of A Republican Party Gone Wild In Michigan

Memo Pad Politics

5 Examples Of A Republican Party Gone Wild In Michigan


Wisconsin’s Republicans got most of the attention, but Michigan’s Republicans have recently proven to be the best example of a midwest gerrymandered Republican majority drunk with its power.

In 2010, in the lowest turnout since 1990, Michigan elected a Republican governor who ran as a moderate backed by big majorities in the state House and Senate. Many of the freshly minted Republicans proudly waved the banner of the Tea Party — a banner that read “Taxed Enough Already!”

Immediately, the newly elected governor and legislature raised taxes on pensioners and cut the earned income tax credit for the poor to help pay for a huge tax cuts for business. Over the course of the next two years, the legislatures explored the most restrictive abortion laws in the nation and even banned a female lawmaker from speaking because she used the word “vagina.”

But they saved the worst of their agenda until President Obama beat Mitt Romney in Romney’s birth state by 9.5 percent. Republicans lost seats in the house as gerrymandering protected Republican majorities. With only 4,000 more votes in four districts, Democrats would have tied up the House 55-55. Instead they only lost 5 seats and maintained a 59-51 majority.

Instead of moving to the center, Michigan’s GOP launched into what Eclectablog‘s Chris Savage has called an “inflamed duck” session that shook the state and finally revealed to the nation what happens when a far-right Republican majority takes over a blue state.

Photo credit: Dwight Burdette


  1. Daniel Jones January 28, 2013


    Repuglycans are striving to govern *against* the United States of America.

    Against the voters.
    Against the economy.
    Against your rights.
    Against your health.
    Against you.

    Just ask guys in Michigan.

    1. sigrid28 January 29, 2013

      This is how Republicans running a Blue state behave, when they are on the offense: sweeping aside democracy for the good of the people, while redistributing wealth upwards.

      Here’s how Republican behave after finding themselves in the minority on November 7, 2012, when they are on the defense: quaking with fear that the government will swoop down and take over, making them hand over their guns.

  2. FredAppell January 28, 2013

    Wow! I think I got sensory overload from reading this article. I actually don’t know where to begin. I will say this though, the one common theme mentioned several times in the article is how Michigan Republicans keep legislating with indifference toward the majority of their citizens who don’t want what the Republicans are selling. That’s not good Governance, it’s bullying.

    1. idamag January 29, 2013

      Fred, out of every $2500 spent on healthcare, $800 goes to pay for those who can’t or won’t. We are paying dearly already for the uninsured.

      1. FredAppell January 29, 2013

        This is why I like when you guys reply to me. You’re able to fill in the gaps that i’m lacking. I sometimes get lazy or too distracted to look up the finer points that will bolster my arguments. Right now I am one of those uninsured and so far I am healthy but I have no idea what i’m going to do if something catastrophic occurs. I was hoping for a single payer system but instead we ended with something that was originally conjured up by the Heritage Foundation and the GOP won’t even owe up to it.

  3. Dominick Vila January 29, 2013

    If the majority of voters in Michigan, and other states with Republican Governors and legislatures, preferred the agenda advanced by the GOP, that’s their choice and their decision should be respected.
    As absurd as some of the socio-economic changes they are making look to us, those changes, as damaging as they will be to the population in those states, are mild compared to the distribution of electoral college votes being passed into law by Republicans in blue states will be to all of us as a nation.
    One thing is to destroy public education, reject the Affordable Care Act, destroy their environment, remove barriers to enable corporations and the elite to do as they please, and another to impose their will on the rest of the nation. The gerrymandering that is going on in states like Michigan, Ohio, Virginia and Florida does not follow the same pattern as in years past. If their latest strategy had been in place last November Mitt Romney would have been elected President regardless of the outcome of the popular vote.
    What is at stake is not the welfare of Michigan residents, but the future of democracy in the United States.

    1. sigrid28 January 29, 2013

      What I don’t understand is how this transfer of electoral votes in federal elections to districts and away from winner takes all can be legal under federal law guaranteeing one voter, one vote? I thought the GOP backed off this power grab last week? Of course, it has become the party of the stealth attack, so that may just be a tactic. I think the gerrymandering power grab wherever it occurs deserves a legal challenge so its legality can be decided once and for all by the federal courts, as it affects federal elections not state elections.

      1. Jim Myers January 29, 2013

        Replying to sigrid28 –

        Even though I agree with your comments about the new laws being challenged in Federal Courts, the problem is that a huge amount of Courts are politically packed with “Conservatives”, including the Supreme Court.

        1. sigrid28 January 29, 2013

          Agreed. Playing the long game, the Democrats in office should wait this out until the Supreme Court is packed with liberal judges and then press the case, on a very wide scale, all at once. These abuses of power by a group that has only been elected because of ALEC cry out for Democratic activism on a local scale. Part of that will be educating low-information Republicans in gerrymandered districts who have suddenly seen their buying power sapped and welfare benefits disappearing. Even gerrymandered districts hold Republican majorities only on a temporary basis in the long game, where young voters and minorities, soon in the majority, will eventually take back control through sheer numbers.

          1. Dominick Vila January 29, 2013

            The real problem is that the Supreme Court ruled in favor of what the GOP is doing at least twice. The first time in 1892 (McPherson v. Blacker), and more recently in its decision in Bush v. Gore. The Supreme Court ruling essentially reaffirmed the right of states choosing a winner take all system, or a district-by-district system. It, in effect. confirmed that the popular vote is irrelevant in the USA!
            If the Electoral College vote allocation changes that are underway in Virginia, Michigan, Ohio, and Florida had been in place last November, Barack Obama would have won the popular vote by about 5 million votes…and Mitt Romney would have carried the Electoral College vote and the presidency. The GOP is well aware of this and is busy paving the way for a win in 2016 and beyond.

    2. idamag January 29, 2013

      Dominick, as usual you are right. It is the future of our country. I would like to see national voting regulations to prevent people like Rick Scott from usurping our democracy.

  4. Jim Lou January 29, 2013

    What is the tax increase? Isn’t that contrary to GOP push to lower taxes?

  5. latebloomingrandma January 29, 2013

    A lot of this is the agenda of the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC). It’s real and not some kind of conspiracy theory. Just google it. Many of their goals have come to pass. While the proposition is supposed to be pro-business, it is really an agenda to install a plutocracy, and keep us peons in our place.

  6. Eleanore Whitaker January 29, 2013

    The problem with ignoring what MI GOP is doing is that it will fall right on the backs of taxpayers in other states if they bankrupt their own people to save enough state and federal tax funding to put into businesses. This is bully economics on a grand scale that has the implications of flooding those most vulnerable in MI into government programs to help keep them alive and healthy, a right guaranteed by the Constitution.

    They may have elected these lunatics. But, these lunatics are not that dumb…they know what they can’t get from their state taxes, they’ll get from taxpayers in other states through federal handouts. This is another GOP Porker state. How much more of this can taxpayers in other states afford?

    It’s time to start demanding they use their state taxes for the people of their state and not to businesses. Since when it is the duty of taxpayers to keep businesses hale and hearty? Particularly, when we know these porker states rely all too heavily on federal tax funding taxpayers in other states are paying in higher proportions than MI.

    1. sigrid28 January 29, 2013

      Having recently become a Paul Krugman disciple, I would add that other states are doing the same thing by eliminating income taxes and increasing sales tax, etc., which hurt the poor and middle class more than the rich, some of whom will save $25,000 in state taxes.

  7. sleeve January 29, 2013

    The nasty old gray faces of the GOP; willing to destroy their state and its citizen in the pursuit of religious zealotry and enriching their pimps. They deserve their irrelevance, the treasonous hoodlums. The Muslim Brotherhood looks more statesmanlike than these anarchist thugs in MI GOP.

  8. jstsyn January 29, 2013

    So the welfare southern states are spreading north. These are a group that need to be defeated one way or another or the U.S. will be exactly like the bible belt, stupid and broke. The Civil War may as well have gone to the south. Who likes what America is becoming? It is up to the American people to change it.

  9. sleeprn01 January 29, 2013

    I have found that so many middle class voters bought into the notion that their hard earned tax money was going to “those people in the city”; code for people of color. A notion that was promulgated by the “tea party”. Because the electorate was so concerned about some of the poor getting something they weren’t they bought into the “tea party” rhetoric. Now those same individuals, whom I am sure some of which were public employees and union members, now they are suffering from buyers remorse. I think that the electorate needs to think a little harder and realize when one class is being played against another by the GOP. I don’t understand how any middle class citizen doesn’t see that the GOP is the party of the rich. This did not just start with the Bush administration but with Reagan administration; for the last 30 years the rich have continued to get steadily richer while middle income has pretty much stagnated.

  10. clarenceswinney January 29, 2013

    16.4T Debt
    How did it occur?
    Reagan began by increasing it 289%.
    Clinton ended with 5800B plus a surplus
    Bush ended with 11,900B
    Obama has 16.4T
    Almost tripled in 12 years.
    Bush two wars, huge tax cut, part D unfunded
    Obama payroll tax cut
    Great Recession
    Bail out too big to fail banks
    Republican refusal to tax to get revenue to pay our way.
    14,000B Income and we tax 2900B and borrow 900 in 2013 fiscal year.
    We must increase taxes for the needed revenue.
    We rank third as least taxed in Oecd nations.
    Our corporations rank second as least taxed.
    We rank fourth on Inequality
    We rank First as per cent of workers lowest paid

  11. Jim Myers January 29, 2013


    Because the GUTLESS Governor and Legislators are afraid of offending the people who stand between them and all of those “GUN NUTS”.


  12. highpckts January 29, 2013

    Let the gerrymandering begin!! Their true colors are finally out in the open!! Cheat to win!!

  13. highpckts January 29, 2013

    Well it sounds easy but when it comes to the people, you could march on Washington 1 million strong and they would call in the National Guard and you would be jailed or ignored! Other than the vote, we no say!!

  14. Ronnie L January 29, 2013

    Dominick Vila needs to run for public office. His perception of the state of National affairs has never failed to be precise, and he articulates his position so well. Thanks.

  15. Mark Ickowski January 29, 2013

    I always knew their were good reasons not to trust repukes all they care about are themselves and the rich i think its time that all repukes no longer exist. They only care about they themselves and them.

  16. dalnb January 29, 2013

    It may turn out the Republican Party becomes the salvation of the United States. In spite of their radical and most often damaging activities there still remains a large corps within the Republican part that stands against amnesty for the illegals in the United States.

    I share that concern and efforts to protect our nation against the illegals. The only way we will be able to defend against the overtake of our nation though is to make every elected official aware that we are against amnesty; it makes not difference if you are a Republican, a Democrat, an Independent or what your religious interests are – we need to defend our nation against the hoard of illegals that may soon be granted Amnesty , a sell out by elected officials more interested in obtaining votes than carrying for our country.

    Now rather than appreciate the defense of our nation, a defense that has cost thousands of good American lives and a defense that would retain a quality of life for our kids, we are ready to give our nation away in hopes of buying additional votes for political office holders. It is obvious this is not for me – or you – or for our country – it is for the vote these millions of illegals and their supporters will give politicians who have less concern for our America than they do for themselves!,

    Republican, Democrat or Independent – We can not allow Amnesty for illegals!

  17. Grump383 January 29, 2013

    Obviously it is now time for the University of Michigan to secede from the state of Michigan and become its own state, wherein all of the intelligent people of Michigan can move to.

  18. rustacus21 January 30, 2013

    It’s quite a shameful admission to be located in MI, but it is what it is. For some reason, the vast majority of voters – SHAMEFULLY – don’t vote in off-year elections, as is the case – SHAMEFULLY – thruout most of the nation. Rick Snyder was able to, like many other governors around the nation, sneak into office by the barest of margins, after vile, disgraceful campaigns where out of state money made the election season a… well, disgrace… that people fell for all the garbage said about our last, very EXCELLENT governor Jenn Granholm… whose only crime was being a female Democrat & a policy-savvy Liberal/Progressive. A soft target in other words, for the vile, unGodly money that inundated the system. Now, we’re being ‘gerrymandered’ into a prospective conservative majority, all b/c voters in MI don’t vote in off-year elections. Things must change is Democracy in America is to survive… beginning at the grassroots!!! Nation-wide that is…


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