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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.

Sunday, August 2, 2009

Cherry Vs.Dillon

         Next to collecting money from contributors, politicians love getting their mug on the tube, their voice on the radio and their name in print when it doesn't cost them a dime.  In political parlance they affectionately call it "free media."
        If anybody has been keeping score recently a guy named Dillon has racked up a ton of free coverage and if a guy named Dillon was running for governor that would be a huge advantage.
        In strong contrast a guy named John Cherry, who is running for governor, has gotten very little ink as he moves around the state on his "time to reinvent state government" summer tour.  Yawn. Yawn.  Suffice it to say, Cherry is not playing to SRO crowds.
       House Speaker Andy Dillon, on the other hand, has dominated the news cycles with his concept to plunk 44,000 public workers into a state operated health insurance fund.  He has captured the imagination of editorial writers and it's only a matter of time before one of them draws this contrast: Andy Dillon is the agent of change.   Cherry is the status quo.
      Since the 2010 contest for governor is all about change, that's not good news for the Cherry-pickers.
      Dillon has not announced his candidacy and the popular wisdom at this read has him staying out of the democratic primary. Lt. Gov. Cherry has it all but wrapped  up as his endorsements keep pouring in while Dillon amasses his headlines. But headlines don't win democratic primaries.
     There is no panic in the Cher ry camp but rest assured they have an eagle eye on Dillon who has supporters who continue to nudge him to run.
     Cherry is working on his own headline "change" story that could emerge later this fall.  He wants to downsize government from 18 departments to about 8.  It's a bold move and the editorial writers will love it….if Dillon doesn't beat Cherry to it.


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