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.
Thursday, March 26, 2009
Rebuking The Governor
After you read this, you'll know why the governor's shop wanted to sit on this letter. The unwritten rule in Lansing is that you don't take on the governor in public and although the rule has been broken, it's a courtesy kind of thing out of respect for the governor. Plus public spats can sometimes turn ugly which hurts everyone. With that in mind 74 members of the Michigan House, recently signed a private letter regarding Gov. Jennifer Granholm's "shift in energy policy." While polite, the correspondence was a rare rebuke. At issue is the governor's decision to place on hold the construction of new coal-fired plants in this state. She wants a review to make sure they are environmentally safe. The lawmakers say that's an "ad mirable" goal, but they want the construction jobs now. The letter tells the governor in no uncertain terms that by delaying the permitting process, "The state is in a sense reneging on the promise of thousands of new construction jobs…" and for good measure, in case the governor missed the point, "The urgent need to create jobs trumps most all other priorities during this time of economic crisis." Pretty strong stuff and to make matters worse for her, 33 of those who signed the letter are from her own party including the House Speaker Andy Dillon who had earlier gone public rejecting her delaying policies. The fingerprints of the Michigan Construction and Trades Council are all over this correspondence. Obviously the union wants these jobs and it's not happy that the environmental lobby somehow got the governor to delay them. Nobody around here can remember the last time a sit ting governor got a letter like this from so many disgruntled legislators.