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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.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Grab the Pitch Forks?

Give him the benefit of the doubt.
That one phrase best describes what has been going on in this town
ever since Rick Allan Snyder became governor.
Most of the "players" are not quite sure what kind of leader he will
be and minus any "evidence" to suggest he's no up for the job, everyone
says, let's just wait and see.. There will be plenty of evidence with
the release of his first budget Thursday.
The Better Michigan Future coalition is waiting to see. It's
composed of some forty special interests including major labor unions,
the social safety net crowd and others that generally look to Lansing
for help.
"We're pretty anxious," reveals the BMF campaign manager which
pretty much describes the mood in this town as everyone awaits the
first Snyder know that "atomic bomb" document that will be
dropped within hours.
Frank Houston is keeping the groups powder dry. No sense
sharpening the "pitch forks", he advises, until everyone sees what the
spending cuts look like.
But if it is as bad as some fear, the group is ready to jump into
action by taking this story to the grassroots. Houston calls it the
"outside game."
It's a great strategy on paper: Rally the troops at home to put
pressure on lawmakers to stop all the spending cuts.
Problem is most of those "troops' like all the spending cuts. In
fact when the former governor boasted about cutting more services than
anyone else in history, that generated zero complains from most
citizens who did not notice or did not care about the holes in that
social safety net.
Houston concedes "apathy" is a challenge "without a doubt."
But will this time be different? If there are Draconian cuts to
police, fire and education programs, will the hinterland rise up?
Noting worse than a pitch fork, with no one to hold it.


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