Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Precinct Delegate Considers Lawsuit Against Ottawa GOP, State Sen. Arlan Meekhof

An Ottawa County GOP Precinct Delegate tells WMP he is mulling legal action over what happened at the Ottawa County GOP Convention and the subsequent aftermath that led to the firing of Ottawa County GOP Exec. Director Faith Steketee.

The delegate, who wishes to remain anonymous at this time, is frustrated with the lack of an investigation into what occurred.

He emailed WMP because "your blog has been the only media outlet trying to tell people what really happened." A conversation then ensued.

The delegate is considering a lawsuit against the Ottawa County Republican Party and State Sen. Arlan Meekhof.

"The Executive Committee doesn't care what really happened. If they did, they wouldn't have voted 14-12 to stop (an investigation) from taking place. They claim they have made changes so that it won't happen again, but how can we really prevent it in the future if we don't really know what happened the first time?"

Meekhof's admission that he commissioned the "orange flyer" places special scrutiny on him, according to the delegate.

"Almost all the people on that flyer made it as delegates, that is not a coincidence."

Ottawa County GOP Executive Director Faith Steketee was blamed, and she was subsequently fired.

"They say it's all (Faith's) fault. She didn't benefit from this in any way known to me. I want to see proof she did something wrong."

The delegate believes a lawsuit may be the only way to reveal the truth.

"I have spoken to a lawyer, and I have standing (the ability to file a lawsuit), I just don't know if it is worth the repercussions from (the Ottawa County GOP "Establishment").  I don't want to be on their blacklist...but I want to know the truth."

The delegate worries the incident will dissuade future volunteers.

"I ran to be a precinct delegate so I could help my party, and I wanted to learn more about politics. I am pretty appalled at what I have seen so far. We have too many good Republicans out there to let people like this ruin things for guys like me who are just trying to help."

Detroit Free Press Proves Schauer Is Lying About Snyder's Education Budget

In an article published Monday in the Detroit Free Press, the paper admitted that Gov. Snyder has increased education funding, and that it was in fact Gov. GRANHOLM who cut school funding.

The Orwellian rhetoric from the Schauer campaign will not be hindered though. "A lie repeated often enough becomes truth." Unfortunately, polling proves a majority of Michiganders believe Schauer's lie. For now...


Freep Fact Check: New Snyder ad confronts $1B claim about education funding

Claim: "At least we're not cutting state education funding like Granholm and Schauer did."
Reality: True. According to the nonpartisan Senate Fiscal Agency, the state share of total K-12 funding in the 2003 fiscal year, when Democratic former Gov. Jennifer Granholm took office, was $11.3 billion. The total amount of state funds spent on K-12 education in the 2011 fiscal year, under Granholm's last budget, was $10.8 billion.

Granholm's budgets, as passed by the Legislature, cut state funding for K-12 education in 2004, 2008, 2009, and 2010... Schauer served in the Michigan Senate for most of the Granholm years, from the start of 2003 to the end of 2008, serving his last two years as Senate Minority Leader. Though he and his party were not in control of the Senate, Schauer supported Granholm.

Claim: "Gov. Snyder has increased K-12 state funding every year he's been in office."
Reality: True. Again using numbers from the Senate Fiscal Agency, state funding for K-12 increased to $11.1 billion in fiscal year 2012, which was Snyder's first budget, to $11.2 billion in 2013, $11.5 billion in 2014, and $12.1 billion in 2015.

Friday, September 26, 2014

How To Get Away With Murder (Granholm/Schauer Style)

Chances are, you have heard about Aramark, a company the State of Michigan hired last December to handle food service in Michigan prisons.

To sum things up: an Aramark employee brought pot into a prison, one had sex with an inmate, and one allegedly tried to procure a hit man while on the job.
Mark Schauer and his allies on the far-left have unfortunately decided to use this "controversy" to distract voters from real issues, like the 300,000 jobs created under Snyder's tenure.
First of all, some history.

The left's war against Aramark has been raging ever since the very idea of the state contracting with them was raised.  Unions have fought tooth-and-nail against Aramark from the beginning, they detest privatization and anything that challenges the union power structure. They have been waiting for controversy-fake or real-to hammer the company.

Schauer, speaking about Aramark, said:

"“The Aramark scandal has now crossed over into the territory of a bad prime time soap opera, except that in reality this governor continues to put the safety of state employees at risk and waste taxpayer dollars on a failed experiment in privatization. When will this governor realize that enough is enough? Inappropriate relationships with inmates weren’t enough. Heroin being smuggling into our prisons wasn’t enough. Now charges of murder for hire? It’s way past time for Rick Snyder to send Aramark packing and to end this $145 million contract.”

Mark Schauer doesn't give a DAMN about a few Aramark employees causing trouble via marijuana and sex. If the acts were committed by MDOC officers, Schauer would bend over backwards defending them. After all, the powerful corrections union is still a power-player within Schauer's party.

Why does Schauer and his allies talk so frequently and dramatically about Aramark?
1. It fires up his Union-oriented base.
2. It's a story full of cheap headlines and scandalous one-liners. Subsequently, the media loves it. They write article after article, tweet after tweet...

Hopefully Michiganders don't have short memories.
When Governor Granholm was in office-with Mark Schauer at her side in the Senate-the MDOC was horrendously mismanaged. 
Because of extreme stupidity by Granholm officials, innocent Michiganders were murdered and children were assaulted.
Marijuana infiltration and guards fraternizing with inmates in prisons is nothing new, and neither is ineptitude from government bureaucracies. Granholm's administration, however, took it to a whole new level.

Granholm's MDOC was so inept they accidentally released a murderer who then KILLED THREE MORE PEOPLE!

"Patrick Alan Selepak, 27, was released on parole in June 2005; he returned to prison five months later on a parole violation for assaulting his girlfriend. Prison officials failed to hold a hearing within 45 days, and Selepak was freed on Jan. 10, 2006 despite having pending charges. The Michigan Supreme Court had ruled in 2003 that the DOC was not required to release prisoners who werent provided hearings within 45 days, and Selepaks release violated departmental policy. A month after he was let out of prison Selepak and his fiancé, Samantha Bachynski, 19, allegedly murdered Scott Berels and his pregnant wife, Melissa, and later shot and strangled Winfield Fred Johnson. Had Selepak not been erroneously released he would have still been incarcerated at the time of the killings."
The issues led to repercussions in Granholm's MDOC, though those were little help to the families who were hurt:

"State Sen. Alan Sanborn sharply criticized the DOC, saying that while parole officials didn't pull the trigger &. they provided the access so that these animals could get the gun. He told DOC director Patricia L. Caruso that her employees were culpable and should be terminated. Following a three-month investigation Caruso obliged, firing parole supervisor Larry Baran. Baran had reportedly lied about his knowledge of the 45-day policy and had urged parole officials to conceal the Supreme Courts ruling from parole officers.

Another parole supervisor, Daryl Cantine, was forced to retire early under pressure. Cantines supervisor, Carol Duncan-Smith, the administrator of Field Programs for the parole department, was demoted due to inadequate oversight and management of her subordinates. Lastly, Selepak's first parole officer, Martin Awe, received a ten-day unpaid suspension; Awe had failed to test Selepak for alcohol use, which was a condition of Selepaks parole since he had a known alcohol problem.

Our mission is to protect the public and I know that you feel we have failed in that, DOC Director Caruso told lawmakers. And I would be hard-pressed to argue with you. To prevent another failure by the parole supervision unit that had been responsible for monitoring Selepak, Caruso abolished the unit in May 2006. There was an apparent lack of leadership, rampant misuse of discretion and very little supervision by the individuals responsible for overseeing that office, she said."
What did Mark Schauer do about it from his post as leader of the Michigan Senate's Democrats? Not a damn thing. He doesn't even seem to be on record talking about the issue.
It wasn't just Sepelak:

"Selepak's serial murder spree generated widespread media attention that resulted in a larger investigation into the DOCs practices related to parole revocation hearings. It was discovered that within the previous year, 40 other prisoners were improperly released after they didnt receive timely revocation hearings...

Besides Selepak, several others had committed crimes following their improvident releases, ranging from robbery to sexual abuse of a child; one remained at large for almost a year."

It's almost funny to see people like State Rep. Brandon Dillon take to Twitter touting BS petitions that "demand" the State cancels the Aramark contract.
It's just like the Sheriff in Casablanca who is "shocked" to discover gambling at his favorite establishment-it's all an act.

Schauer and his surrogates like Dillon know Michigan has had issues long before Aramark-far more severe, too. PEOPLE DIED.
They only seem to care when it works to their political advantage.

Chances are you have probably seen a preview for the new show "How To Get Away With Murder."
How does one get away with murder? It's not easy...but with folks like Granholm and Schuaer, maybe you'll get lucky. Patrick Selepak did.

Monday, September 22, 2014

Demas and Finley Want A "Rockstar" Governor...But Where In The HELL Did That Get Michigan Previously?!

In a recent column, Inside Michigan Politics Publisher Susan Demas blasted Governor Snyder, assailing him as "One Smug Nerd," writing:

"For years, Democrats offered up tone-deaf eggheads who ooze off-putting moral superiority, like Mike Dukakis or Al Gore. They were mercilessly parodied on Saturday Night Live. 

Even if voters agreed with them on many issues, they couldn't relate to them. And they lost. Why Team Snyder thinks this new One Smug Nerd routine will resonate in the Rust Belt is baffling."

Snyder made it absolutely clear from the beginning in 2010 that the polished "happy talk" from career politicians Michigan voters were used to hearing from had ruined us. Snyder declared the gameplaying of the Granholm era was over, it was time for something new, it was "time for a nerd."  

Michiganders agreed, electing him Governor in a historic, landslide victory. 

(Demas makes her point, but the politics of a Michigan gubernatorial race in which the incumbent is seeking re-election are far different from a national race for President in which there is no incumbent. Also, for the record, I think she's a fantastic columnist and am excited to see what she does with IMP!)

In a interesting twist, Demas cites RICK SANTORUM of all people as one Snyder could learn from!

"Let's not forget that Rick Santorum nearly upset Michigan native Mitt Romney in the 2012 presidential primary. One reason was that Santorum tapped into the anger of Michiganders left behind in the new economy.

In a fiery campaign appearance in Troy, Santorum noted "some people have incredible gifts with their hands" and bludgeoned President Obama for being a "snob" who just didn't get it.

The audience ate it up.

These voters will be key in this year's gubernatorial race."

Demas once BLASTED Santorum  for the EXACT same style she now says SNYDER SHOULD EMULATE!

Demas, writing in a 2012 column entitled "How Rick Santorum proved that he doesn't have what it takes to be president," wrote:

"When you have decided to denigrate the value of a college education as a cheap ploy to win votes in one of the most depressed states in the country, you don't deserve to be president.

It's really that simple. 

And I certainly hope that all the Republican business leaders and politicians who laud higher education as the only path to a middle-class existence were listening to the bile that spurted from Rick Santorum's mouth on Saturday at the San Marino Club.

"President Obama once said he wants everybody in America to go to college," Santorum declared. "What a snob. Not all folks are gifted the same way. Some people have incredible gifts with their hands." 

At that point, my daughter's head snapped up and she exclaimed, "That guy's crazy."

Now I don't know if the former Pennsylvania senator really believes his own bunk. But what I do know is that Rick Santorum, esquire, is a hypocrite. He holds a whole serious of fancy, book-learnin' degrees -- a B.A. from Penn State University, an M.B.A. from the University of Pittsburgh and a J.D. from Dickinson School of Law. 

No one seems eager to note that it's kind of snobby for a guy with three higher degrees who makes about $1 million a year to tell the unwashed masses that it's cool for their kiddies to work at Wal-Mart for the rest of their lives."

So WHY IN THE HELL would Snyder now want to emulate THAT?! Interesting... 

Santorum was indeed more lively than his "CEO" opponent, Mitt Romney-but that didn't win him Michigan, nor the Republican nomination in Tampa-for a multitude of reasons...

Also, Santorum's impressive showing was due just as much to being more charismatic than Romey (not hard to do) as it did with the anti-Romney voters coalescing around him, and Democrats like MARK SCHAUER voting in the Republican primary for Santorum!

 That effort was led by Democrat Joe DiSano, who coordinated Democrat crossover in favor of Santorum. DiSano is one of Michigan's top political strategists. 

Worth noting: Demas actually praised Governor Snyder in comparison to Santorum, writing:

"Let's just consider for a moment the mental gymnastics it would take for Gov. Snyder -- a man who finished his B.A., M.B.A. and J.D. in only six years -- to give a throaty endorsement to Rick "College is for Snobs" Santorum.

Demas also claims that "Snyder has avoided debates with his opponent, Democrat Mark Schauer, which looks weak."

Snyder has actually ACCEPTED Schauer's challenge for a debate, but Schauer insists it takes place during the evening-a problem easily solved by taping the debate.  

In the culmination of her column, Demas writes:

"Snyder is not exactly a man of the people. He's most comfortable lecturing folks from afar like the former CEO he is.

Schauer may not have the folksy charm of George W. Bush, but he can comfortably don the plaid shirt for the parade circuit. He revels in going door-to-door and talking with people.

There's a reason why Nolan Finley, editor of the conservative Detroit News editorial page, recently penned a savage rebuke to Snyder, brutalizing him as being as "dull as a valiumed-up dental patient."

Conservatives are begging Snyder to metamorphose from a CPA into a street-fighter, stat.
But is it already too late?"

Maybe the reason is because Mr. Finley forgot about the Granholm era and the damage Michigan endured.

 Finley, in addition to his cheap shot on the Governor's personality, wrote:

"Snyder’s response is a somnambulist commercial in which he comes across as dull as a valiumed-up dental patient with a message eerily reminiscent of Granholm’s infamous “in five years, you’ll be blown away” pledge."

Mr. Finley must have forgotten that Granholm made that infamous declaration at a State of the State address and never delivered. 

Contrary to Garnholm's failed record, Governor Snyder has spearheaded many positive changes that are making Michigan better. It sounds like Nolan Finley suffers from "Gramnesia."

Demas and Finley seem to want a "rockstar" Governor... A governor who revels in constant media interviews and "kissing babies," one who gets "fired up" all the time. A governor great at grandstanding and giving speeches big on rhetoric-who cares if they're backed by results?

After all, both Demas and Finley ackowledge Schauer is lying about Snyder supposedly cutting education funding, but they basically say, "who gives a damn-he looks good doing it!" 

He is not perfect, and he is not the "rock star" breed of politician President Obama is-or Gov. Granholm was-but where the hell did those folks get us? 

The reason some people in both parties immensely hate Snyder is the reason he will be re-elected: he is an independent thinker with a mind of his own, trying to do the best job he can despite the "haters."

Snyder doesn't fit the molds they want to promulgate. He's not "Rick Santorum," he's not a smooth talker easily defined by a headline or a thirty second sound bite...

I am more of a "Ron Paul" guy, but Snyder never claimed to be. If he had, I might be upset. Snyder "kept it real from the jump" as Drake might say, he said from the beginning he was an independent-thinking nerd with a plan to turn Michigan around after a decade of decline.

He has delivered. 

Michigan "started from the bottom, now we're here," and there's still more work to do. 

But we are better off than we were four years ago.

  • Unemployment is down from over 14% under Granholm to around 7%.
  • Personal income is up.
  • Michigan's population is growing.
  • Poverty is declining.
  • Detroit is FINALLY being held accountable, and with a little tough love, they are coming back slowly but surely!
  • Workers can't be forced to join a union anymore. 
  • Granholm and Schauer's driver responsibility fees are gone-and so is the disastrous, job-killing MBT. 
  • 1800 useless regulations have been repealed.

AND education spending has INCREASED-even if Mark Schauer won't admit it. 

Thursday, September 18, 2014

"Law and Order" Style Web Ad Hits Schauer For Granholm DHS Drama

In a web ad circulating Thursday from ReElectRick, a "grassroots organization dedicated to the re-election of Governor Snyder," gubernatorial candidate Mark Schauer is taken to task for his lack of action to reform Michigan's Department of Human Services.

The ad can be viewed by clicking here.

Michigan's DHS was plagued with issues that resulted in the deaths of multiple children, the most prominent being Ricky Holland, a seven year old from Williamston.

The Granholm administration was sued by a children's rights group, leading to an array of reforms at Michigan's DHS.

On Facebook, the group wrote:

""The ad released today highlights the continued failure of Jennifer Granholm and Mark Schauer to keep our kids safe," said ReElectRick Communications Director Phillip Connor.

"Time and time again, Granholm/Schauer's DHS dropped the ball while Michigan kids suffered, Some, like Ricky Holland, were even murdered.

Because of perpetual negligence that hurt Michigan kids, endangering their lives, Granholm was successfully sued. Subsequently, a number of reforms were instituted so that the abysmal atrocities that occurred under Granholm and Schauer's watch could never happen again.

Michigan can't afford a third Granholm term, our kids deserve better than Mark Schauer."

Schuette Threatens "Creeps" Who Attack Women: "We're Coming After You"

Attorney General Bill Schuette pulled no punches while talking about violent sexual offenses against women recently, writing on Facebook:

"For these creeps who prey on women, that won’t be tolerated. 

The message is that these assault cases won’t be forgotten on a shelf some place and we’re coming after you."

Schuette linked to an article referencing a horrendous case in which a man kidnapped and raped a young girl in Kalamazoo. 8 years after the assault, because of the Attorney General's Cold Case Sexual Assault Project, the man was arrested and now stands trial. He may be linked to many other attacks.

According to WOOD TV:

"The charges stem from an incident on April 8, 2008 in which a woman ran across US-131 and flagged down an officer with the Kalamazoo Department of Public Safety, saying she had been repeatedly raped at knifepoint. Her assailant was unknown.
The Attorney General Cold Case Sexual Assault Project team made the case a priority, devoting hundreds of hours to the investigation. In 2012, the team’s investigation linked the victim to Kelly, a release from the attorney general’s office said.
Schuette and Kalamazoo County Prosecutor Jeff Getting wouldn’t talk about any specifics of the case, including whether Kelly’s mobility as a truck driver may take the case beyond Kalamazoo.
“More to come on that,” was all Schuette said.
But court records suggest Kelly may be responsible for at least nine similar cases in other states. In her request for an arrest warrant, an assistant attorney general told a judge that a DNA match that lead investigators to Kelly. She told the judge Kelly’s DNA has been linked to other rape cases in Virginia, Tennessee and Missouri between 1985 and 2010. The status of those cases is unclear."

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Senate Majority Leader Meekhof?

Multiple sources confirm to West Michigan Politics that State Senator Arlan Meekhof is actively campaigning behind the scenes to become the new Senate Majority Leader when the legislature takes office next year.

Meekhof, the State Senator for Ottawa County, would replace the outgoing Randy Richardville in the Michigan Senate's top leadership post.

When Meekhof was asked about this issue by WMP at a Chamber Breakfast in June, he said  "stay tuned."

Meekhof, currently the Majority Floord Leader, has been positioning himself for the Majority Leader spot for years.

 Meekhof has recently come under fire for his involvement in the controversial Ottawa County GOP Convention that led to the firing of Faith Steketee, as well as for hypocritically attacking 90th District State House candidate Geoff Haveman for a campaign finance report that was slightly late.

Gongwer picked up on WMP's report that revealed Meekhof and Garcia had also filed late paperwork. 

Gongwer discovered Meekhof had been fined over $5,000 because his report was many days late.

(Meekhof also called Haveman, a U of M law grad, "fringe" and "unqualified.")


Yob: Michigan Republican Party Lying To Grassroots About 2016 Primary

John Yob, one of the top Republican strategists in Michigan and throughout the country, had strong words for the Michigan Republican Party recently, taking to Facebook to blast them for lying to grassroots activists about the 2016 Republican Presidential Primary.


"It seems the Party is pushing forward with an Open Primary that they call a Closed Primary, Winner Take All, on March 15th. By definition, a Closed Primary is a Primary in which Democrats can't vote. That is hard to do in MI, and so the Party claims requesting a Republican ballot means only Republicans can vote. Obviously any Democrat can walk in and request a Republican ballot on Election Day. 

I would urge folks to be honest and call it what it is - an Open Primary. I don't personally have a position on Open vs Closed, but I think being honest with the grassroots base of the party is important."

Yob also wrote a few days later:

"It looks like the party is going to continue the dishonesty of referring to the Michigan Presidential Primary as a Closed Primary. The dishonesty is disappointing but shouldn't be surprising to anyone who remembers what occurred in 2012."

MI GOP Chair Bobby Schostak

Friday, September 12, 2014

FACT CHECK: Land An "Invisible" Candidate? Hardly.

In an outrageously bias hit piece against Terri Land, Dave Catanese twists the facts, takes multiple situations out of context, and gives false information in what looks more like a Gary Peters press release than a US News and World Report article.

He claims Land is merely counting on television ads “while hardly campaigning.” Absolutely not true-Land has campaigned all across the state at dozens of events since 2013. 

But wait, it gets better! Quoting Peters,
“It is odd. I’m the guy who’s up in the polls, who is asking for a debate,” Peters tells U.S. News in an interview. “It’s a sad commentary of where American politics has gone if a candidate believes they can win an office like the U.S. Senate and simply rely on attack ads and millions of dollars of ads.”

He later adds: The spending disparity that Land has enjoyed is about to reverse itself, with the Democratic Senate campaign arm reserving more than three times the amount of ad space than its GOP counterpart in the final weeks.

So it's horrible when Land has the money for ads, but when Peters does the same thing, it's all good?
He also claims Land is "close to invisible," writing:

"But on the trail, she’s taking a minimum exposure approach that’s making her close to invisible."
Interesting. Makes one think Land might be walking the halls of Hogwarts as opposed to running a race for the U.S. Senate...
The author derives his headline and inspiration for his article's theme from a quote given by a Democratic consultant who fully backs Peters, writing:
“It is kind of like the Wizard of Oz. Who’s the woman behind the curtain? She could almost be from another state,” says Jill Alper, a Democratic consultant based there. “It’s like Casper, the ghost for Senate.”

Comparing Land to Casper is demeaning and simplistic. The top statewide vote-getter two times over certainly isn't "invisible." 
Catanese further attacks Land, writing:
“Land is a wobbly, uneven candidate, uncomfortable with the unscripted interactions required of any statewide contender. 
Her singular joint public appearance with Peters at the Mackinac Policy Conference back in May is remembered for an unvarnished moment when she responded to a scrum of reporters bombarding her with questions with the frazzled reply, “I can’t do this!”"
Wobbly and uneven because of one experience that was completely taken out of context after Land asked media who surrounded her to back off a little for space reasons?
And "A statewide contender," eh? Might someone who won big statewide two times over know a thing or two about being a statewide contender?!
The author's half baked narrative doesn't end there.
"But because she’s the GOP nominee in a midterm year when President Barack Obama’s statewide approval rating languishes in the low 40s, Land is a prime test case for whether a lackluster candidate can still succeed by running a one-dimensional campaign."
Lackluster and one dimensional? Jeez. Maybe this written at Gary Peters HQ? He's obviously never met Land, nor is he familiar with her powerful life story. Has he even looked at her website?
Catanese's hitjob continues, quoting Rep. Dale Kildee, a staunch Peters supporter.
 “No matter how much marketing you do, if the product’s not a good product, I don’t think she can simply buy this race,” he told reporters back in July.
Kildee has something negative to say against Land? What a shock!
Catanese also claims WOOD-TV was "forced to cancel" a debate between Land and Peters. This is not true at all. WOOD TV merely postponed the debate, a very common occurrence with political debates.

He writes:
"Commercials – and her ability to outspend Peters on 30-second spots during most of the summer – has allowed Land to keep pace. Most polling shows her trailing by single digits.
But her refusal to debate might be the strategic decision that marks the beginning of the end of her long-shot hopes as the fall campaign veers into focus. Her political truancy is beginning to draw wider attention.
On Monday, the local NBC affiliate in Land’s hometown of Grand Rapids, Michigan, was forced to cancel its scheduled debate because Land’s campaign team never agreed to terms. In order to highlight her absence, Peters stole a page out of Clint Eastwood’s 2012 Republican National Convention playbook, propping up an empty chair and debating it in front of a gathering of his own supporters." 
And what hit job would be complete without attacking her for giving female pols a bad rap?
"But Barb Byrum, the Democratic Ingham County Clerk, contends there are bigger repercussions of Land’s candidacy that she worries will have enduring effects for aspiring female politicians.
“As a female candidate myself, this is bad for women candidates. I know that women candidates are held to a higher standard,” she says. “It all makes her appear to be very thin as a candidate.”"

What a joke.
It looks like Catanese's article was born out of frustration-not facts.
"Over a two-month period, U.S. News put in repeated requests for an interview with Land in the state or on the phone. She was not made available."

With articles like his, she probably made the right choice.

Schauer Opposes Voter Backed Medical Marijuana Law, Calls Pot A "Harmful, Risky Gateway Drug"

In an email response to a constituent shortly after winning his Congressional election, Mark Schauer says he supports federal law over Michigan's voter enacted constitutional amendment allowing medical marijuana.
Schauer also called marijuana a "harmful, risky...gateway drug that damages organs."


"Thank you for contacting me with your concerns regarding current marijuana policy in the United States. I appreciate hearing from my constituents on issues that are important to them. I apologize for the delay in my response. I have been working hard to respond to the many inquiries of my constituents as I set up my new office.

Under federal law, use of marijuana is illegal. While some states, Michigan included, have passed legislation to allow the use of marijuana for medical purposes, the harmful side effects of its use cannot be ignored. Marijuana seriously impairs the central nervous system's ability to control thoughts, mood, memory and coordination. Marijuana use damages the organs, glands, and hormones involved in growth and development, and poses increased risk of hypertension and heart disease. Marijuana is also a gateway drug that too often has lead to young people getting involved with even more serious substances. For these reasons, I fully support the current federal laws in place regarding marijuana usage.

Again, thank you for contacting me. If you should have any additional questions, please do not hesitate to contact me.

Interesting... That initiative passed with almost 66% support. Every county voted in favor-even Ottawa...

Thursday, September 11, 2014

Team Huizenga Uses Fake Name To Attack West Michigan Politics, Seeks Thousands In Fines

Using a profile known to be fake account for Daniela Garcia in a recent State House race, Bill Huizenga's staff have started to attack West Michigan Politics in a sad and desperate  attempt to subvert our reporting on his involvement in the Ottawa County Convention chaos.

That chaos led to the termination of long time Executive Director Faith Steketee, and Huizenga's half-brother was installed as her replacement.

In an email sent to WMP by multiple individuals, "Jeff Olsen," likely one of Huizenga's staff members, encouraged people to report WMP to the FTC for a $16,000 fine. "Olsen" wrote:

"Did you recently receive an e-mail from West Michigan Politics?  It is likely that the writer of this blog, Brandon Hall, sent you an illegal spam e-mail.

Just because you signed up to be a precinct delegate does not mean that people like Brandon Hall now have the right to send you illegal commercial spam to promote their divisive, self-serving blog posts.

Please report Mr. Hall’s spam to the Federal Trade Commission by forwarding the spam e-mails to where there are fines up to $16,000 per e-mail sent, report West Michigan Politics to your e-mail provider and send the abuse to MailChimp at as he is in clear violation of their terms of use.

For reference: Mr. Hall broke the law in the way he obtained your e-mail address and for not providing a valid physical postal address as seen below.

West MI Politics
Grand Haven, MI 49417

In Liberty and Privacy,


That account on Facebook was used solely to attack Jim Holtrop and Geoff Haveman in the 90th State House primary. It also used insider info to attack Amanda VanEssen in the fall of 2013 when she was allegedly thinking of getting into the 90th State House race. 

WMP is confident No "Jeff Olsen" exists outside of Greg VanWoerkem or Matt Kooiman or Jon DeWitte's computer.

Team Huizenga is scared. And of course, they should be. They sit next to one of the most accessible, transparent Congressman in the history of America, Justin Amash. Huizenga isn't even in the same league.

Imagine if a good candidate challenged the Huizenga empire in the 2016 primary? And what happened at the Ottawa GOP Convention that has them so nervous?

It's funny they care so much about this, a simple unintentional error.

I am sure they "really want to get to the bottom of this," just like with Benghazi, and Faith's termination, and what happened at the Ottawa County Convention! ;) :)

And what about that FAKE ILLEGAL robocall they did the Sunday before the primary in the 90th!?! They aren't too concerned about that... Meekhof said he asked local law enforcement to investigate-WMP has not found ANY reports to substantiate his claim...

As for "spam" emails? 14 unsubscribes out of 1900 emails. Over 65% of people open our emails and over 50% click. Hardly "spam."

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Will The Real Wes Nakagiri Please Stand Up?

In Novi, Wes Nakagiri stood with Brian Calley, calling for a united front moving forward after losing a spirited race to the incumbent Lt. Gov.

That race sometimes looked more like "Say Yes To The Dress" than "Say Yes To Wes" with the pink Snyder/Nakagiri flyers, and shades of "Law and Order: SVU," with the creepy Anti-Calley van awkwardly greeting delegates outside the convention hall...

At the end of the day though, Wes is a decent guy who worked hard and ran a respectable campaign for the most part, though some supporters booing Rep. Amash at the convention as he nominated Calley was a low-point. 

Nakagiri received almost 40% of the vote as a complete political newcomer challenging an incumbent LG-that's pretty damn good.

However, after backing Snyder and Calley on the convention floor, in a flip-flop that would make John Kerry proud, Nakagiri has since taken to Facebook saying things like:

"Justin Amash (R-Cascade Twp.) who, in a truly bizarre turn of events, declared that Calley would "push back" against the (bipartisan) Common Core education standards . . .

When did Brian ever push back against any Snyder policy?"


"In 2010, amid much conservative enthusiasm, Snyder beat Bernero 1.87 million to 1.29 million votes. In 2006 Granholm beat Devos 2.14 million to 1.61 million. Total voters in each election were 3.16 million and 3.75 million. If the Dems have any enthusiasm at all in 2014 the Nerd could be in trouble."

Terri Land was also targeted as Nakagiri continued to talk about Snyder:

"I received the email shown below from Terri Lynn Land. Has she always been opposed to Common Core or is this a recent revelation? Maybe she could get Governor Snyder to see the light?"

So...why did he endorse Calley in Novi?

That was Nakagiri's chance to tell them to buzz off-instead he got on board, backed Snyder and Calley, asked for unanimous consent to nominate the LG, and subsequently, Snyder and Calley attended the Nakagiri post-convention dinner/party...

Does Nakagiri support Schauer or another candidate? He seems to be hinting at it. What happened to Snyder/Nakagiri?

Photo by Kenneth Ration and Darlene Thompson

Huizenga: Truth About Ottawa GOP Situation "May Not Reflect Well On Me Personally"

Congressman Bill Huizenga had some interesting things to say at August 28th's Ottawa County GOP Executive Committee meeting, leaving attendees with more questions than answers.

"I wanna get to the bottom of the truth, whether it's Benghazi or this," Huizenga said.

"It might not reflect well on me personally, it might not reflect well on my friend who has become the crux of this...and I wish we weren't having this conversation quite as publicly, especially with the media here...we are getting dangerously close to taking our eye off the ball."

What does that mean, it "may not reflect well on me personally." Why did he say that? Is this because staff members were involved in the shenanigans at the Ottawa County Convention that were subsequently blamed on Faith? 

One would think Bill personally wasn't using insider info to compile shady orange flyers and purge duly elected delegates and alternates... 

And is this situation on par with Benghazi? Interesting analogy...Why does Huizenga support investigating Benghazi but not what happened at the Ottawa GOP convention? Why did he have all his supporters on the Executive Committee vote against an investigation?

And was his half brother an appropriate choice to replace former Executive Director Faith Steketee? It's a controversial decision to say the least. 

Can the Ottawa GOP move forward to November while developing some semblance of unity? Yes, but that doesn't change the fact that the "Faith Situation" is far from over.

Many who spoke up at the meeting are right-the violations at hand are exactly the type of things Republicans accuse Barack Obama of doing.

And the decision to fire Executive Director Faith Steketee wasn't delayed, so why should an investigation be? So after November 4 it can be swept under the rug with a new justification? No thanks. We can help candidates like Snyder and Land while an investigation occurs. 

An investigation will actually excite many people who want answers, why don't people like Huizenga and Meekhof want any?

Read more below:

Audio: Huizenga Confronted At Controversial, Chaotic Meeting-Brother Named As Faith's Replacement

Meekhof Admits Responsibility For Orange Flyer

Firing Squad: WMP Reveals Ottawa GOP Executive Committee's "Faith Vote" 

Ottawa County GOP Chaos: Meekhof + Huizenga Involved? What You Need To Know 

Meekhof's Scapegoat? Ottawa County GOP Executive Director Faith Steketee FIRED

Dirty Deeds: Did Meekhof Chief Of Staff DeVries Vote At Ottawa GOP Convention Despite Living In Kent County?

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Audio: Huizenga Confronted At Controversial, Chaotic Meeting-Brother Named As Faith's Replacement

In a controversial and often times chaotic meeting of the Ottawa County GOP Executive Committee Thursday night, Rep. Bill Huizenga was confronted by multiple individuals  over his involvement in the Ottawa County GOP Convention, causing the meeting to be brought to order by Chairman Adam Tountas after a heated back and forth that saw Huizenga's conservative credentials questioned.

Huizenga said he wants to get to "the bottom of the truth, whether it's "Benghazi, or this," referring to what happened at the Ottawa GOP Convention and subsequent delegate controversy.

Also, the committee rejected on a 14-12 vote to commence an investigation into the multiple irregularities surrounding the Ottawa County Convention and subsequent State Delegate list.

Huizenga's half-brother Jim Barry was named "Interim Executive Director," replacing the recently deposed Faith Steketee…

After Vice-Chair Amanda VanEssen took attendance, Chairman Tountas had guests introduce themselves. Announcements from party figures like Jack Holmes and a vote on the agenda also occurred, as well as some side items. (3:50 to 19:30)

Also- At the offset, after roll was called, State Rep. Amanda Price harped on the lack of a treasurer's report, which was not listed on the agenda, inducing Treasurer Dianna Johnson to tears after she explained she was unable to finish the report because she was kicked out of the office Tuesday, and her mother had recently passed away.
(8:18 to 9:48)

Congressman Huizenga talks about Terri Land at around the 19:30 mark. (19:30-20:20)

Around the 20:45 mark, Chairman Tountas begins to talk about the County Convention and the infamous “Orange Flyer.”

Around the 25:45 mark, Richard Garay, who was elected as an alternate after being elected a precinct delegate, addresses the meeting and shares his experience of driving to Novi only to discover his name was improperly left out of the alternate list submitted to the state party.

Around the 29:30 mark, tensions flare.

“The list that was filed with the State Party bore no resemblance to what was adopted at the end of the convention-this came to my attention Friday night...I had our former Executive Director send me a copy of the list…” Chairman Tountas said.

Treasurer Dianna Johnson fired back:

“I had the list-Adam, you are wrong….you’re trying my patience. Adam you’re lying, Amanda, you’re lying-I know I am going to get kicked out of here, I know that, but I am sitting here as a woman of truth!”

Ray Reifsnyder also spoke up and bickering continued.

Around the 33 minute mark, Vice-Chair Amanda VanEssen explains how she realized issues were at hand.

Around the 40:10 mark, Jeff Fuss says an hour before the Convention, the list prepared by Executive Director Steketee per the slate committee’s recommendation was thrown away because of outside interference…

“Somebody came in that was not a member of that committee…and that list was changed-the order the way the slate committee said everything was gonna be was changed-that crap happens in Washington DC, right Bill? Obama walks over the constitution…Obama does everything  and we don’t stand up and do anything...”

Around 44:20, Slate Committee member Michael Kuras gives his take and makes a motion to commence an investigation… 44:20 to 1:06 is a key part of the meeting…

"Many elected precinct delegates were not on ballots...(the) printed ballots inconsistent with the slate committee's (recommendation) violated State and County (Republican Party) rules," Kuras said. "Precinct delegates were suppose to be given preference-by substituting elected delegates (for non-elected ones on the county convention ballot)...the letter and spirit of the law was violated."

Kuras also said that the County Chair and Vice Chair (Amanda VanEssen) discussed (convention matters) with the Executive Director (Faith Steketee) and "countermanded the decision of the slate committee. The Executive Director had ballots printed consistent with the slate committee's decision but discarded those ballots."

"A step in between the slate committee's recommendation and what was presented at the convention...violates all my senses of due process and rule of law," Kuras said.

County Clerk Roebuck gives his take at the 52:40 mark.

Kuras, Roebuck, Dennis VanDam, and Rep. Huizenga discuss issues, and after Huizenga has an interesting exchange with Kuras around the 1 hour mark, things culminate at:

105:30 when Rep Huizenga says: "I wanna get to the bottom of the truth whether it's Benghazi or this. It might not reflect well on me personally, it might not reflect well on my friend who has become the crux of this...and I wish we weren't having this conversation quite as publicly, especially with the media here...we are getting dangerously close to taking our eye off the ball."

Huizenga is then “booed” by many members of the crowd…

108:50 Executive Committee member Michael Botman takes Huizenga to task, noting that the issues surrounding the convention and problems with the process are the same actions we accuse Barack Obama of perpetrating with Obamacare. No delay was taken to fire the Executive Director, so why delay an investigation? We can investigate on the side-we can do two things at once. Gene Welch is asked if he was contacted for the “reconstruction” he was not.

At 1:12:35  the vote is taken regarding an investigation and it fails 14-12. Huizenga jokingly requests "will someone please take notes on this." 

Some individuals voting no include Joe Haveman, Jim Barry, Joe Bush, Amanda Van Essen, and Dennis Van Dam.

Bill Huizenga is confronted by Deb VanDyk around 1:15:55, and that exchange goes on until 1:18:25.

She decries his involvement in the County Convention and  attacks on “Conservative Americans” to which Huizenga exclaims “I am a Conservative  American!” Multiple members of the crowd then bring up various issues, such as Common Core and  his support for Daniela Garcia in the 90th District State House race…

Around the 1:20 mark, Barb VanderVeen gives an update on the State Convention

At the 1:25 mark, an interesting exchange develops with Vice Chair Amanda VanEssen and Ken David  regarding the “reconstruction” of the delegate list.

At the 1:28:40 mark, Jim Barry, Bill Huizenga’s half brother, is named as the new Executive Director.

Around 1:36:30, Dr. Cal Dykstra calls for the resignation of Chairman Tountas and Vice Chair Van Essen.

Around the 1:41 mark, Jeff Fuss addresses the crowd again…

Other public comment and back and forth ensues with County Commissioner Dennis VanDam, State Rep. Price, County Clerk Roebuck and others to conclude the meeting-along with a few announcements…

Read more about this situation below:

Meekhof Admits Responsibility For Orange Flyer

Firing Squad: WMP Reveals Ottawa GOP Executive Committee's "Faith Vote" 

Ottawa County GOP Chaos: Meekhof + Huizenga Involved? What You Need To Know 

Meekhof's Scapegoat? Ottawa County GOP Executive Director Faith Steketee FIRED

Dirty Deeds: Did Meekhof Chief Of Staff DeVries Vote At Ottawa GOP Convention Despite Living In Kent County?

Arlan Meekhof