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Friday, April 26, 2019

Controversial Rep. Rashida Tlaib Is A Plaintiff In Major Gerrymandering Lawsuit That Killed Michigan's Legislative Maps

Rep. Rashida Tlaib


By Brandon Hall
(Email Him At WestMIPolitics@Gmail.com)

Controversial Democrat Rep. Rashida Tlaib is a plaintiff in the gerrymandering lawsuit brought by Mark Brewer and the League of Women Voters that has resulted in Michigan's legislative maps being thrown out by federal judges.

Tlaib, known for controversial statements like saying "impeach the mother f-cker!" regarding President Trump, represents Michigan's 14th District in Congress.

Brandon Hall is a lifelong political nerd from Grand Haven, and is the Managing Editor of West Michigan Politics.

>>>Email him at WestMIPolitics@Gmail.com
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Developing: Bombshell Court Ruling Severely Impacts Michigan's 2020 Elections After Legislative Maps Ruled Illegal



By Brandon Hall
(Email Him At WestMIPolitics@Gmail.com)


A bombshell court ruling issued by a panel of three federal judges could severely impact 2020 elections in Michigan.

The decision, handed down Thursday afternoon, says that 9 of Michigan's 14 Congressional Districts drawn in 2011 are illegally gerrymandered, and must be re-drawn.The court also identified 10 State Senate districts, and 15 State House districts they say are illegal. 

The most shocking aspect of the ruling ordered Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson to hold special State Senate elections in 2020, two years ahead of schedule. 

The judges say special elections are needed because the old maps egregiously hurt the rights of voters in those districts on a "historic" level. 

This could mean State Senators will lose 2-4 years of time in Lansing. Michigan's Constitutional amendment enacting term limits, passed in 1992, says Senators can only be elected twice, the only exception being to fill a vacancy under two years.

New districts must be created by the legislature and signed into law by Governor Whitmer before August 1st, or the court will draw them.

The problematic districts, which you can view below, are "packed" and "cracked" to favor Republicans and disenfranchise Democrats, the panel said. 

"Packing" is when a political party is heavily grouped into one district to prevent them from being competitive in other neighboring districts. 

"Cracking" is essentially when a district is carved up and rigged up without regard for aspects such as municipal boundaries in order to benefit or hurt a particular political party.

The lawsuit was filed against the Secretary of State at the time, Ruth Johnson, by Mark Brewer on behalf of the League of Women Voters. It is likely to be decided by the US Supreme Court.

Senate Majority Leader Mike Shirkey has already announced the Senate will appeal the ruling.

PROBLEMATIC DISTRICTS

Senate:
8th, Senator Pete Lucido
10th, Senator Michael McDonald
11th, Senator Jeremy Moss
12th, Senator Rosemary Bayer
14th, Senator Ruth Johnson
18th, Senator Jeff Irwin
22nd, Senator Lana Theis
27th, Senator Jim Ananich
32nd, Senator Horn
36th, Senator Jim Stamas


House:
24th, Rep. Steve Marino
32nd, Rep. Pam Hornberger
51st, Rep. Mike Mueller
52nd, 52nd, Rep. Donna Lasinski
55th, Rep. Rebekah Warren
60th, Rep. Jon Hoadley
62nd, Rep. Jim Haadsma
63rd, Rep. Matt Hall
75th, Rep. David LaGrand
76th, Rep. Rachel Hood
83rd, Rep. Shane Hernandez
91st, Rep. Greg VanWoerkom
92nd, Rep. Terry Sabo
94th, Rep. Rodney Wakeman
95th, Rep Vanessa Guerra
Congress:
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Brandon Hall is a lifelong political nerd from Grand Haven, and is the Managing Editor of West Michigan Politics.

>>>Email him at WestMIPolitics@Gmail.com
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Michigan State Senate CHAOS: Federal Judges Order 2020 Senate Elections, Senators May See Their Time In Lansing Cut By 2-4 Years



By Brandon Hall
(Email Him At WestMIPolitics@Gmail.com)


Thursday's federal court ruling that Michigan must hold State Senate elections in 2020 has shaken Lansing to the core. 

After 10 Senate districts were ruled illegal, a three judge panel is demanding the districts be re-drawn, and elections held in 2020 instead of waiting until 2022. Any Senate seats amended to accommodate the 10 under scrutiny must also vote in 2020.

Senate Majority Leader Mike Shirkey has already announced the Senate will appeal the ruling.

It will be virtually impossible to re-draw so many districts without the domino effect impacting nearly every region in the state. A couple Senators far away from the districts at issue, like Ed McBroom in the Western corner of the UP, or someone like Roger Victory in Ottawa County, could perhaps escape. Maybe...


The court opined that "the fact that a special Senate election would truncate the four-year terms of senators is not ‘unduly intrusive’ given the gravity and extent of the constitutional violations at issue in this case. While senators may be disappointed that their four-year terms will be reduced to two years, the sentiment of the legislators elected under an unconstitutional apportionment plan does not outweigh the constitutional rights of millions of Michiganders to elect their senators under constitutional maps.” 


Also, here is an immensely interesting contention: State Senators who were just re-elected can't run again in 2020, limiting them to six years, and freshman Senators who won for the first time in 2018 won't be able to run again in 2022, limiting them to four years.
The Michigan Constitution is clear: "No person shall be elected to the office of state senate more than two times."


The only exception is to fill a vacant seat if it's under two years, which is not the issue here.

Senators Ananich, Hertel, Schmidt, Horn, MacGregor, Stamas, Shirkey, and Zorn could be ineligible to run again in 2020 if this ruling holds, creating 8 open seats.

The order to hold new Senate elections comes after Mark Brewer and the League of Women Voters sued Secretary of State Ruth Johnson, arguing many legislative districts at the state and federal level are gerrymandered to benefit Republicans.

In the end, the case is likely to be decided by the US Supreme Court... Stay tuned!

>>>Read More About The Lawsuit Below:
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Brandon Hall is a lifelong political nerd from Grand Haven, and is the Managing Editor of West Michigan Politics.

>>>Email him at WestMIPolitics@Gmail.com
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Grot Announces President Trump's 2020 Campaign Manager Brad Parscale Is Coming To Michigan

Brad Parscale Saul Loeb/AFP/Getty Images

10th By Brandon Hall
(Email Him At WestMIPolitics@Gmail.com)

10th Republican Congressional District Chair Stan Grot has announced President Trump's 2020 campaign manager, Brad Parscale, is coming to Michigan.

Parscale is a tech wiz who has received rave reviews for successfully implementing a myriad of impressive digital strategies for President Trump during his historic 2016 campaign. 

He is headlining the 10th's annual Reagan Day Dinner at Shelby Gardens on June 11th.

The event also includes Republican National Committee Chair Ronna Romney McDaniel, and Michigan Republican Party Chair Laura Cox.


10th District Chair Stan Grot greets Vice President Mike Pence during a recent visit to Michigan to promote the USMCA, President Trump's replacement for NAFTA. The proposal was highly supported by the Big 3 automakers.

Parscale's visit highlights the importance Michigan will play in 2020. 

Doing well in places like Macomb County is an absolute MUST in order for President Trump to win the Great Lakes State again, and make no mistake, he will have the resources to compete aggressively. Parscale recently announced the campaign will spend over $1 billion across the country to re-elect the President.

It shouldn't be surprising that Parscale is staying true to his digital roots as he runs the campaign.

It was immensely fitting that, when he took the stage in Grand Rapids last month during President Trump's rally, he was engaging with the crowd, imploring them to text TRUMP to 88022 to sign up for important text updates.

>>>Tickets can be purchased HERE for $75. VIP tickets are also available for $100.


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Brandon Hall is a lifelong political nerd from Grand Haven, and is the Managing Editor of West Michigan Politics.

>>>Email him at WestMIPolitics@Gmail.com
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Tuesday, January 29, 2019

Keep Michigan RED: Lewandowski And Bossie Visiting Friday To Support President Trump

Lewandowski and Bossie join President Trump on stage in Macomb in early 2018


By Brandon Hall
(Email Him At WestMIPolitics@Gmail.com)


President Trump won Michigan by just over 10,000 votes in 2016, and as 2020 rapidly approaches, it's clear the Great Lakes State will be one of the top battlegrounds in play. Already well positioned for success in Florida and Ohio, winning Michigan, Wisconsin, and Pennsylvania is vital to the President's re-election. 


That's why two of President Trump's closest advisers, Corey Lewandowski and David Bossie, are headed to the Detroit area this Friday for an event at the Henry Ford Museum: they want to see President Trump's policies continue.


Lewandowski and Bossie, who frequently talk with the President, appeared on stage with him during his most recent visit to Michigan, in Macomb early last year. 


They are working with the leader of  President Trump's 2016 Michigan campaign, Scott Hagerstrom. Hagerstrom runs the Michigan Prosperity Project, the organization hosting the event.


Scott Hagerstrom
Lewandowski was his first campaign manager, helping Trump secure the nomination with historic victories during the Republican primary. 

Bossie joined the campaign in the fall of 2016 as Deputy Campaign Manager, working side by side with Steve Bannon, Kellyanne Conway, and other top campaign officials. Bossie is well known for his role with Citizens United, and has been named as one of the most influential people in American politics by Politico.

The Henry Ford Museum has 12 acres to explore. Must see highlights include Kennedy and Reagan's limousines, the chair Lincoln was shot in, the Rosa Parks Bus, and the actual cot used by General George Washington during the Revolutionary War.
The entire museum has been rented out for the evening, a remarkable opportunity to see one of Michigan's historic treasures in the company of fellow conservatives and Trump supporters.

Heavy appetizers will be served, and all guests will receive a copy of Corey and David's new book, "Trump's Enemies," a New York Times bestseller. The event includes a book signing.

Tickets can be purchased for $50 by CLICKING HERE. A VIP photo option is also available for $100. Students interested in attending may be able to receive a scholarship.

Kent Terry, brother of Border Patrol Agent Brian Terry, killed during Obama's Fast and Furious operation, will also speak at the event about why we need to build a wall on the southern border.
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Brandon Hall is a lifelong political nerd from Grand Haven, and is the Managing Editor of West Michigan Politics.

>>>Email him at WestMIPolitics@Gmail.com
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Monday, January 7, 2019

Prominent Jackson Attorney Eric White Cheated The IRS Out Of $1 Million, Bankruptcy Documents Reveal

Eric White, left, Lee J. Belding, right


By Brandon Hall
(Email Him At WestMIPolitics@Gmail.com)


Eric White, a prominent attorney in the Jackson area, cheated the IRS out of $1 million, bankruptcy documents reveal.

Lee J. Belding discovered White was the subject of an IRS investigation, Internal Revenue Service V. Eric White, while analyzing White's bankruptcy filing.


Belding is a 2016 Northwest graduate currently attending Michigan State University. He recently won a lawsuit against Northwest Schools over a controversial bus video the district attempted to cover up. 

White's bankruptcy, which was finalized late last year, was recently the subject of a debate from the Leoni Township Board. They fired White during a meeting on New Year's Eve.

In addition to owing the IRS, the filing reveals White, as well as his wife, Northwest School Board President Shawn White, owe nearly half a million dollars to other entities.

Belding believes it's important for the White family to be held accountable.


"It's easy to repeatedly beg the public for tax increases when you don't bother paying your own," Belding said in a statement Monday evening, referencing recent Northwest Schools tax hikes supported by the White family. "What happened isn't a missed bill or two, or a misunderstanding, this is a million dollar scheme that has been going on for years. It's shameful."

Belding is considering filing a complaint against White with the Attorney Grievance Commission over the controversy. 


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Brandon Hall is a lifelong political nerd from Grand Haven, and is the Managing Editor of West Michigan Politics.

>>>Email him at WestMIPolitics@Gmail.com
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Monday, November 12, 2018

Ottawa County Man Scheduled For November 20 Marijuana Possession Trial Hopes Charges Are Dropped After Proposal One's Approval



By Brandon Hall
(Email Him At WestMIPolitics@Gmail.com)


An Ottawa County man is hoping his marijuana possession charge set for  trial next week will be dropped by prosecutors, or dismissed by the Judge after the passage of Proposal One.

Rick Howard of Grand Haven faces trial stemming from a June pot arrest in Grand Haven, and because of previous drug convictions, simple possession has turned into a felony.

Howard is scheduled for trial November 20th in Ottawa County Circuit Court before the Hon. Judge Karen Miedema.

With Kent County and other municipalities terminating pending pot possession prosecutions, as well as Governor-elect Whitmer vowing to pardon similar offenders already convicted, 
Howard believes his case should be thrown out.

Michigan voters overwhelmingly voted to amend the Constitution to legalize marijuana for recreational use last week, with the measure passing by nearly 15%. 

The change won't take effect until the end of November or the beginning of December, 10 days after the election is certified by the Board of Canvassers.

Jury selection is in the case is scheduled for November 19. If Howard is convicted, he would be sentenced a few weeks later-when marijuana is legal.
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Brandon Hall is a lifelong political nerd from Grand Haven, and is the Managing Editor of West Michigan Politics.

>>>Email him at WestMIPolitics@Gmail.com
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