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Wednesday, November 15, 2017

Chatfield, Glenn+Theis Named "Most Conservative" In Michigan House

Theis, left, with Chatfield, center, and Glenn, right (DarKen Photography)


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

State Representatives Lee Chatfield, Lana Theis, and Gary Glenn have been named the most conservative legislators in Michigan's House.

That's what the American Conservative Union said, giving the trio a 96% score.


According to Glenn, "he tied with two fellow Republicans -- Speaker Pro Tem Lee Chatfield, R-Levering, and Assistant Majority Leader Lana Theis, R-Brighton -- in voting conservative on 96 percent of the twenty-three roll call votes selected by the ACU."

The ACU said in a press release that they chose from a number of bills while compiling their scores.

"ACU researched and selected a range of bills before the Michigan Legislature that determine a member’s adherence to conservative principles. We selected bills that focus on Ronald Reagan’s philosophy of the 'three-legged stool': 1) fiscal and economic: taxes, budgets, regulation, spending, healthcare, and property; 2) social and cultural: 2nd amendment, religion, life, welfare, and education; and 3) government integrity: voting, individual liberty, privacy, and transparency. This wide range of issues are designed to give citizens an accurate assessment that conveys which of Michigan’s elected leaders best defend the principles of a free society: Life, Liberty and Property."

Glenn and Theis also received the distinction in 2015, along with State Rep. Jim Runestad.




 __________________________________________________________________
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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Replacing Meekhof: Victory Kicks Off State Senate Campaign Friday

Roger Victory speaks at a Mike Pence rally in Holland (DarKen Photography)


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


State Rep. Roger Victory will officially kick off his State Senate campaign on Friday, WMP has learned.

Victory will make the announcement at noon on his farm in Hudsonville.

Victory hopes to replace Sen. Arlan Meekhof, who can not run again because of term limits.


Already in the race: State Rep. (D)aniela Garcia, and former State Rep. Joe Haveman.
 

Garcia enters the race with a cash advantage, but faces big problems with the conservative base because of her voting record.
 __________________________________________________________________
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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Pete Hoekstra Confirmed As President Trump's Ambassador To The Netherlands



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


Former Congressman Pete Hoekstra is now the Ambassador to The Netherlands after receiving Senate confirmation late last week. 

WMP broke the story earlier this year that Hoekstra was the leading contender for the position, and President Trump ended up picking him.

Hoekstra, who was born in The Netherlands, was a co chair for President Trump's Michigan campaign in 2016.
 

Hoekstra's nomination was supported by both Sen. Gary Peters, and Sen. Debbie Stabenow. Hoekstra ran against Stabenow in 2012, ultimately falling short.

Pete Hoekstra Tops Trump's Shortlist To Be Ambassador To The Netherland

 __________________________________________________________________
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 Blasts Benson, Proposes Multi Year Car Registration Plan To Help Cut SOS Wait Time

Stan Grot speaks at a Steve Bannon event (DarKen Photography)


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

Shelby Township Clerk Stan Grot, who is running for the Republican nomination for Secretary of State, has unveiled a proposal designed to let Michigan drivers spend less time stuck inside Secretary of State offices by allowing vehicle owners to purchase multi-year registrations.

Grot says the proposal will save drivers from wasting time.

“The first part of my customer service plan is to offer multiple year car and truck registrations,” Grot said in a press release. “On leased cars and trucks, registrations will be valid for the duration of the lease. For all other cars and trucks, I propose choices for registrations to be renewed every one, two, or three years."

Grot says it would be up to the driver which registration they wanted to purchase.

"The choice is up to the individual motorists, as it should be," Grot said. "Personally, I have better things to do on my birthday than wait in line for new tabs. This change will allow motorists to make one third the number of trips to Secretary of State Offices, and that will allow our employees to be more productive in other matters.”

Grot is touting his "real-world experience as a Township Clerk, Assistant Secretary of State, City Councilman and a private entrepreneur." 

He says his resume distinguishes him from his opponents.

Grot singled out his leading Democrat foe, Jocelyn Benson, calling her a typical liberal who is making unrealistic and unfounded promises.

“Voters said no to Jocelyn Benson when she ran for Secretary of State and lost in 2010. Her “30-minute guarantee” is nothing more than a gimmick to get herself elected," Grot said. "She is a typical liberal candidate making promises that she cannot keep. The Secretary of State does not run local elections. Elections are conducted by local clerks. Jocelyn Benson will have zero control over the lines and the wait to vote on Election Day. The Secretary of State position is extremely complex. It takes deep understanding of the day-to-day operations at the branch offices and requires knowledge in overseeing the election process. She is giving our citizens false hope. Her “30-minute guarantee” is unrealistic and not achievable.”

Grot, who is also the 10th District GOP Chair, faces MSU Professor Dr. Joseph Guzman, and EMU Regent Mary Treder Lang in the fight to see who will be the Republican Secretary of State nominee. 

Benson is expected to be the Dem candidate, but still may face a battle of her own...

 __________________________________________________________________
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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Calley Hands Part Time Legislature Campaign Over To Tom McMillin

Calley, left, McMillin, right


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

Lt. Governor Brian Calley has transitioned the leadership of his proposal to enact a Part Time Legislature and slash legislator pay to Tom McMillin.

McMillin, a member of the State Board of Education, is a favorite with the grassroots. Calley says he believes in McMillin's leadership.

"I’m confident that Tom McMillin is the right person to lead Clean Michigan Government," Calley said in a press release. "His experience and success in organizing and leading grassroots activists in Michigan is exactly what Clean Michigan Government needs. This initiative started with the grassroots, and it is the grassroots that will push it over the finish line."

Calley says McMillin brings a lot to the table.


"Tom McMillin a former state representative, Honorary Chairman of Concerned Taxpayers of Michigan, and current member of the Michigan State Board of Education, brings a strong track-record of successful conservative activism in Michigan to the Clean Michigan initiative," Calley said.

Joining McMillin as leaders in the effort are:

-Former State Rep. and RNC Committeeman Dave Agema
-Former Trump Michigan Deputy State Chair CJ Galdes
-Former Kent County GOP Chair Dave Dishaw
-Norm Kammeraad, leader of the 2014 PTL effort

 The campaign hopes to put the issue before Michigan voters in November of 2018.

Calley says that turning over leadership to McMillin "will allow me more time to work toward accelerating the Michigan Comeback next year and beyond." 

Many believe that work includes running for Governor.




 __________________________________________________________________
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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Shock Poll: Duggan 47%, Schuette 32%



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

A surprising new poll probably won't do much to throw cold water on the prospects of Detroit Mayor Mike Duggan's possible campaign for Governor: Duggan beats Attorney General Bill Schuette 47% to 32%, a 15 point margin.

Duggan has insisted he has no plans of running for Governor, but he had to say that, as until last week, he was running for re-election as Mayor... Duggan won big, beating State Sen. Coleman Young by over 44%, 72-28.

The question now is, will his tune change in the next few months?

According to Tim Skubick of WLNS:

"New polling data out today showing Democrat Gretchen Whitmer in a virtual tie with Republican Bill Schuette in the race for governor.

But another Democrat beats Mr. Schuette by 15 points.

For literally years, Detroit mayor Mike Duggan has steadfastly said he will not run for governor and there’s no evidence that he will.

But in a head-to-head race with potential Republican candidate Bill Schuette, Mr. Duggan wins by 15 points 47 percent to 32 percent.

But the Target Insight MIRS newsletter poll also shows Democrat Gretchen Whitmer, whose been running for 11 months is in a statistical dead heat with Mr. Schuette 41 percent to 40 percent."

 __________________________________________________________________
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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Thursday, November 2, 2017

Agema: Did Schuette Promise Meekhof MEDC Leadership Post?



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

Former State Representative and RNC Committeeman Dave Agema says he has heard reports of a deal between Attorney General Bill Schuette, and Senate Majority Leader Arlan Meekhof.

Under the terms of the deal, Schuette will make Meekhof head of the MEDC if he is the Governor.

Agema believes the rumored deal may have been a reason why Meekhof booted Sen. Patrick Colbeck off of all his committees, and also took over management of Colbeck's office.

The MEDC post is a prominent position in the Lansing swamp, and it pays pretty well, too.

If true, the answer to the mysterious question of just what Meekhof plans on doing after his term is up would be answered...

Read Agema's comments below:




 __________________________________________________________________
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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Breaking: Leonard Holding No Fault Reform Vote Today (With Or Without The Votes To Pass)



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

Speaker Tom Leonard is putting a proposal to change Michigan's no fault auto reform up for a vote later today, whether it passes or not, WMP has learned.

Conservative legislators who support no-fault reform want a vote on the record, and Leonard is prepared to give them just that. The House Republican Caucus is meeting early this afternoon, and passions are running high.


The vote could be the second piece of legislation brought to the floor this year without the support to pass. Earlier this year, Leonard moved a modest income tax cut that failed after 12 Republicans voted against it.


It's not just conservative legislators pushing for reform, grassroots leaders are on board as well.

Matt Maddock, a State House candidate running as a "Trump Republican," says reform is long overdue.

"Our “highest in the nation” auto insurance rates are so high they are now an obstacle to economic growth," Maddock said. "These outrageous rates affect ALL businesses.Please call your legislators and urge them to support Lana Theis Auto Insurance Reform House Bill 5013. Call ASAP. This is a hot-bed issue and our legislators are under TREMENDOUS pressure to keep the status quo which costs you billions in inflated rates."

The battle over Michigan's controversial no-fault law is a contentious one, with supporters of reform saying it will lead to lower car insurance rates for Michiganders, who pay some of the highest costs in the country. 


Opponents contend reform will do little to impact rates and the legislation will benefit insurance companies at the expense of crash victims.

Supporters of reform highlight the fact that hospitals are charging car accident victims significantly more for the same services than say, a kid who broke his leg playing football, because they can get away with inflated costs through the no fault system.


Leonard has teamed with Detroit Mayor Mike Duggan to gain bipartisan support for the bill, but it's not clear if enough Dems will come on board to make up for Republicans who are opposed...Stay tuned!


 __________________________________________________________________
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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Wednesday, October 25, 2017

Michigan Trump Republicans Event In GR Shut Down After Antifa Threats: Here's What Really Happened



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

The Michigan Trump Republicans event in Grand Rapids Tuesday was shut down after threats from members of the radical, far left organization Antifa. Many rumors, as well as a lot of incorrect information, has been promulgated ever since...

Here's what you need to know:

The event was originally scheduled to take place outside in Rosa Parks Circle, but when it was clear that it would be raining, organizers sought an indoor venue.

Diane Schindlbeck is the leader of West Michigan Republicans and is a co-founder of Michigan Trump Republicans. Schindlbeck called Flanagan's on Monday and told one of the owners about the situation. The owner was willing to host the group, and told them to stop in for lunch the next day so they could pick out food for the event.

Michigan Trump Republicans leadership arrived a little after 2, tried some food, and everything was going to plan.

In the meantime, however, members of Antifa learned of the new location and started making a series of threats against the business and promised a major counter protest of the event.

I arrived around 3:30 to help setup, and that is around the time when the script flipped: the other owner had learned of the threats and was worried about what it could mean for their business, which they have owned since November of 2016.

The owners then asked MTR to remove any promotional posts on Facebook advertising Flanagan's as the location. They also decided they didn't want any political signs or literature displayed as well. They also decided that the group could no longer use a mic/stereo system for the event's speakers, and that attendees would be limited to a specific small area of the bar which would have a difficult time holding the group. 

Sprinkled throughout these demands were hints-subtle and blatant-that the owners believed everyone would be better off rescheduling the event at another location.

The business owners, fueled by fear of Antifa threats and the "tolerant left," simply didn't want to get involved. It's their first year, they are building a reputation and trying to get by, the last thing they need is a boycott or vandalism and drama...

This is where MTR had a difficult choice: put on a half ass event that would have to turn people away, or respect the wishes of the business, and live to fight another day.

Choosing to reschedule the event was a tough decision, but it was the right one. 

MTR Co-founder Meshawn Maddock says this incident won't deter the group.

"The foundation of our freedom is based on the first amendment and the open exchange of ideas. What really makes America great is that we have open debate,  free thought. These totalitarian leftists are worse than the tyrant kings our forefathers faced," Maddock said. "Antifa protesters are attacking small business owners who also have a right to run their business. These threats of physical violence cannot be ignored.We won't back down, we will continue to meet with Trump supporters all across Michigan. We will be back to Kent County very soon."

Though temporarily emboldened, Antifa only won the battle, they lost the war, MTR is returning to Grand Rapids in mid November, and it's gonna be YUGE... Stay tuned!

 __________________________________________________________________
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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All Delegates Matter: Schuitmaker Under Fire For Implying Some Precinct Delegates Aren't Important

Leonard, left, Schuitmaker, right


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

 State Senator Tonya Schuitmaker is under fire for a Facebook post in which she said some precinct delegates are controlled, implying delegates who think for themselves and don't follow a leader are essentially worthless to her campaign.

 The post, which has since been removed, was regarding Monroe County Commissioner Greg Moore's endorsement of House Speaker Tom Leonard for his Attorney General campaign.

 Leonard and Schuitmaker are both seeking the Republican nomination for AG at the MIGOP convention next summer...

""Both Randy and Jason say not to worry bc (Greg) does not control delegates," Schuitmaker said, seemingly referring to former Senate Majority Leader Randy Richardville and State Rep. Jason Sheppard.

>>>Watch Greg Moore address the issue in a Facebook video:


3rd District MIGOP State Committeeman Matt Hall says the post is very revealing.

"This is how Tonya Schuitmaker publicly reassures her Lansing base that her candidacy is valid?? I have heard Tonya speak this way before about delegates, but never publicly," Hall said. "In Tonya’s perverted view of GOP politics...legislators control grassroots delegates. Once two area legislators inform her that a delegate does not matter she writes him off. The true Tonya Schuitmaker that I know is shining through for all to see...She should be worried, and not dismissive of a delegate like Greg Moore supporting her opponent. (T)he assumption behind her statement that the only people who she should be worried about are these elected officials who control the delegates is wrong."


Moore called Schuitmaker's comments "a mistake," and says that someone who would make such a comment clearly doesn't understand the convention process and what delegates do. Moore says delegates should think for themselves, he has no interest in controlling anyone.

Political consultant Stu Sandler of Grand River Strategies says he has never seen a convention candidate openly attack a delegate this way.

"I have seen a lot of things in convention races over the years, I have never seen one candidate openly discredit another candidate's endorsement until now," Sandler said. "Terrible move here by Tonya Schuitmaker. Tom Leonard posted an endorsement by Monroe activist Greg Moore. Greg might not be the biggest power broker on the convention floor or even in Monroe. But he is a good Republican and I would be proud to have his support if I was running for something. Not sure 2,000 delegates want to be evaluated by Tonya Schuitmaker openly on how many delegates they bring to convention. But I guess that's the joys of social media."

Schuitmaker has not commented about the situation at this time.

Schuitmaker has faced a rocky start to her Attorney General campaign. 

At the Mackinac Republican Leadership Conference last month, she received around 30% of the vote in the straw poll, with Leonard grabbing nearly 70%. Leonard hadn't even declared his candidacy yet...

Stay tuned!
__________________________________________________________________
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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State Rep. Laura Cox Leads Schuette LG Buzz



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

State Rep. Laura Cox recently announced she is running for State Senate, but she may have another opportunity on deck: the Republican nominee for Lt. Governor.


Attorney General Bill Schuette is said to be giving Cox a hard look to be his choice for LG if Schuette wins the nomination for Governor next August.


If chosen, and she wins the Senate primary as expected, Cox will face a difficult choice: roll the dice on being LG in what will be a tough year for Republicans, or hang on to her seat in the State Senate.


State law doesn't allow Cox to be on the ballot for both positions. Current Lt. Governor Brian Calley faced the same issue in 2010, opting to join Gov. Snyder's ticket. 


Calley was then replaced in the general election for State Senate by Judy Emmons. Local party leaders made the choice, and while it's premature to speculate too much, one name rumored to be a top contender with Wayne County GOP leaders for the Cox Senate seat if it opens up after the primary is Shannon Price of Plymouth Township...


The LG position is voted on by delegates at the state convention. Though the nominee for Governor almost always gets his choice confirmed, it's no guarantee. Rumors of LG candidacies independent of any candidate for Governor are swirling, stay tuned!


 __________________________________________________________________
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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"March Against Meekhof" Protest Scheduled For November 1st In Lansing



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

The group Citizens for Responsible Senate Leadership is hosting a "March Against Meekhof" on November 1st.

The event will take place in Lansing, in front of the Capitol, at noon.

CRSL says that Meekhof stripping State Sen. Patrick Colbeck of his committee memberships and taking over his Senate office was the last straw....

>>>Click Here to check out the event's Facebook page

Read CRSL's statement below:

“Really this is an outrage. And you should be outraged whether Senator Colbeck is "your guy" or not. It is quite obvious that this a calculated political move from the political class to try and damage the campaign of a sitting Senator simply because he isn't part of that political class and came out of the tea party movement.

Its not the first time, in fact the political class in Lansing has tried to minimize Senator Colbeck his entire Senate career.

And for an interesting compare and contrast, Senator Colbeck received an 2016 "AWARD FOR CONSERVATIVE ACHIEVEMENT" from the American Conservative Union Foundation and guess who didn't?

However, this is an opportunity to voice your opinion that this type of behavior should not be tolerated from those in leadership positions of power.”
--------------------------------------------------

Citizens for Responsible Senate Leadership

Arne Giummo - arne.pcf@gmail.com 734.515.8612
Julie & Bill McEvoy - 734.427.2633
Denis Curran - 734.427.7629
Estelle Oliansky - 734.748.2329
Duane Zantop - 734.274.2459
Ron Hoge
 __________________________________________________________________
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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Friday, October 20, 2017

Kowall Congressional Announcement Imminent In The 11th



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

WMP has learned that State Senator Mike Kowall is on the verge of launching his campaign for Congress.

Kowall is running for the 11th Congressional District seat held by Rep. David Trott, who is retiring after his current term.

Kowall's timing means he won't have to post fundraising numbers until January of 2018, though raising money is not expected to be an issue for Kowall, he is likely to be among the front runners in what will be an extremely competitive race.

Candidates in the race so far include businessman Rocky Raczkowski, Plymouth Township Supervisor Kurt Heise, State Rep. Klint Kesto, and former Congressman Kerry Bentivolio.

Also in the mix is business owner and former Michigan Trump Co-Chair Lena Epstein, who has nearly $800,000 on hand after raking in nearly half a million dollars in the last quarter. 
 
Kesto has raised around $46,000. Other candidates filed after the reporting deadline.

Kowall's decision to avoid a nasty convention battle for Secretary of State and fight on more friendly turf in the 11th was a smart move, stay tuned!
 __________________________________________________________________
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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