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In and outs of the political campaigns, focusing on Michigan and Lansing, Tim Skubick will report regularly throughout the primary and then general election campaigns.

Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Head Nodding Time

Even if you can't stand Governor Jennifer Granholm, and you know you are, suck it in and give her a pat on the head for pulling off one of her best State of the State messages, yet.
You can quibble with some of what she said, but you can't argue with the way she went about saying it.
Look it. Most SOS's are easily forgotten. What is remembered is the symbolism and on that front the governor had one objective: To turn the page on 2007 when she and the legislature created one negative headline after another as they squabbled over tax hikes and budget cuts. It was more than ugly. It was disgraceful, and she as much said so.
She acknowledged that folks like you were angry. She said she was too but she hoped on board the Straight Talk Express and made this concession, "But let's be honest---that anger is aimed at us, too." What the people got was "partisan rancor…."
Even if you can't stand Jennifer Granholm, your head should be nodding.
She finished that line and drew another one in the sand.
"I'm calling on you to join me in an era of unprecedented cooperation for historic progress." And then she stared beyond the TV lights into the eyes of the 148 lawmakers sitting in front of her and delivered this penetrating line, "Will you join me?"
As if surprised at the directness of her question, everyone sat there for a second and then, realizing they had no choice, they jumped to their feet in an affirmation of her question. They would join her--- both democrats and republicans.
And then in a masterful bit of showmanship, she put a point on the challenge by shaking the hand of Senate GOP Leader Mike Bishop of Oakland County; then the hand of Lt. Gov. John Cherry and she rounded out the symbolism by grabbing the hand of House Democratic Speaker Andy Dillon. Her message was clear.
Even if you can't stand Jennifer Granholm, your head should be nodding.
And then she highlighted one issue after another that had universal appeal. Republicans had no choice but to stand up on most of them. She wanted a bi-partisan picture for the folks in TV land and she got it.
Finally, she had one more challenge. "This is not a time for procrastination or for partisan nonsense. It's a time for just one thing: for us to fight for Michigan's future.
"Partisan nonsense." A rough line but, given what she and the legislature gave he state last year, it was dead on.
Your head is nodding, right?

1 Comments:

Blogger Cathleen said...

Tim, your McCain is showing again. Tuck that in, would you?

Thanks.

Nice summary. Love hearing your thoughts!

January 31, 2008 at 4:12 AM 

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