Candidate Rick Snyder had the audacity to run around the state, in GOP neighborhoods, and tell them he wanted to partner with the City of Detroit. His tune has not changed since he became governor.
But when he cut revenue sharing even the governor's business buddy, Mayor Dave Bing, had to concede that was a "different kind of partnership." But now comes an opportunity for the governor and his GOP legislative side kicks to do something on the positive side.
Mr. Bing needs the GOP legislature to grant him the authority to continue the city income and utlitity taxes. Without that, he's a fiscally dead duck.
He may still end up that way, but getting this stuff is essential.
Ordinarily having the city over the barrel would be an opportunity for Republicans to extract a pound of flesh. After all mention Detroit in outstate Michigan and it does not win you votes if you are a GOP lawmaker.
But Sen. Bert Johnson of Detroit feels no gun to his head as the debate is set to begin. "Everybody understands the precarious position the City of Detroit is in with it's finances," he states the obvious.
The governor gets it. He says the tax extensions are "probably the right thing to do." Ditto from the Senate GOP leader Randy Richardville who has discussed all this with Mr. Bing.
In many ways this is an easy vote for the R's in that most of their constituents don't pay either the income or the utility tax. Some suburban lawmakers may have voters who pay the non-resident tax, so maybe they will get a bye from voting for the extension. But there are still enough left over R's who will join the Democrats to get this done.
Bipartisan cooperation to help the City of Detroit.
Give the GOP governor credit for walking the walk and talking the talk.