December 5, 2016
House Speaker-Elect Tom Leonard gives his thoughts on the pending energy reform legislation, municipal employee retiree health care costs and the "TIF on steroids" package pending in the House. The current Speaker Pro Tem also offers up Rep. Gary Glenn for his nomination for MIRS House Member of the Year. Listen to hear his reasoning and who his second choice would be.
And how did Leonard get connected with former Gov. John Engler Chief of Staff Dan Pero for his incoming chief of staff? Leonard shares that story and more.
Also, the MIRS team sees the pension reform legislation in the Senate as dead and gives other observations on bills pending in lame duck.
November 28, 2016
The $11 billion unfunded liability that Michigan local governments are saddled with needs state government intervention, but is lame duck the time for that conversation? Chris Hackbarth of the Michigan Municipal League tackles that question. He also offers statewide solutions for what can be done to curb costs so that cities -- already financially hobbled by state revenue sharing cuts and lower property values from the Great Recession -- can get on better financial footing.
What are the chance the energy reform package is passed in lame duck? MIRS Editor Kyle Melinn puts the odds at between 85 and 90 percent "yes," but not everyone agrees.
MIRS also offers commentary on the prospects of a statewide presidential recount. Who does a recount help and who does it hurt? Listen to this and more in this week's edition.
November 21, 2016
In trying to save the budget from a $140 million hit, the state was forced to endure another bad headline about fighting a Flint water delivery order. The MIRS team tackles this topic as well as the legislative discussion about amending the state's term limit law.
According to Publisher John Reurink, "There is not a legitimate argument that you can make to the citizens of Michigan that term limits should be repealed." Not everyone around the table agreed. Listen to theories on how a term limits proposal could pass.
Also more layoffs at both major Detroit daily newspapers appear to be on the way. Why are advertising-based or subscription-based general readership publications continuing to bleed staff? And how can journalism make money?
November 14, 2016
How was the media so wrong on the presidential race? Did straight party voting help the GOP? Will the energy package be delayed as we wait for clarity on future federal energy policy from the incoming Trump administration? That and more from the crew of MIRS. Also, Steve Linder president of the Sterling Group debates campaign finance issues with Craig Mauger the executive director of the Michigan Campaign Finance Network.
It should be noted that Randy Richardville account discussed during the debate was referenced as a 527. It is in fact a 501C4. Also, there was an assertion about funders to the Michigan Campaign Finance Network. Their donors over $200 can be found online at: http://mcfn.org/about
November 7, 2016
How did the presidential race go from being essentially over in Michigan to the state becoming Ground Zero for both Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump on the final day of the campaign? Matt Resch from Resch Strategies and Dennis Denno of Denno Research join the MIRS team to answer this and other questions: Why Grand Rapids? Why did the third party candidates not catch on during a campaign in which both major party candidates were so disliked?
These questions and more in this week's edition.
October 31, 2016
Gary Johnson says the FBI's latest look into Hillary Clinton's emails throws her presumed victory into question. So what does that mean for his campaign? Which states does he think he can win? What will it mean for the Libertarian Party if he were to receive 5 percent of the national vote. Johnson answers these and other questions.
Also, who is the face of the progressive movement in the United States and Michigan? Lonnie Scott, the executive director of Progress Michigan shares his thoughts on this and the issue that he sees being pushed to the forefront after this election and beyond.
The MIRS staff lists five scary things we've seen in this election, and in celebration of Halloween, our five favorite Halloween songs.
October 26, 2016
The following is a robo-call being sent to voters in the 106th House District from a secretive 527 calling itself the "Reinventing Michigan and Better Michigan Fund." The voice is that of House Republican spokesperson Gideon D'Assandro, although he declined to confirm that is the case.
October 24, 2016
One poll showed Hillary Clinton leading Donald Trump by 13
points in Michigan. Another poll released less than 48 hours later showed
Clinton up 5. How can two polls be so different? John Yob, CEO of Strategic
National, talks about how the assumptions pollsters are making on the Nov. 8,2016, electorate may be influencing the results.
Also, Sen. Margaret O'Brien (R-Portage) and Sen. David
Knezek (D-Dearborn Heights) have signed up to run this weekend's Marine Corps
Marathon in Washington D.C. to raise awareness of military veterans who return
to the United States with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and other
physical and mental illnesses. O'Brien talks about her interest in the event
and the dangers of training for the 26.2-mile run. Knezek has stress fractures
in his foot. She had firecrackers and debris thrown at her as she ran along the
Michigan-Michigan State football predictions conclude the
October 17, 2016
What does former Gov. Jennifer Granholm think about Republicans trying to campaign off the possibility she may be appointed to a Hillary Clinton administration and bring back the "lost decade?" She answers that question and shares her thoughts on Donald Trump, her "bifurcated" existence as a policy wonk and "blabberer" for the Clinton campaign, and Clinton's email flap.
Also, Donald Trump's sinking popularity and some strong fundraising numbers now have Democrats giving the 8th Congressional District a stronger look. The Democrats' candidate, Suzanna Shkreli, shares her thoughts on the race and her response to incumbent U.S. Rep. Mike Bishop saying he's done talking about Trump.
This and much more on this week's edition.
October 10, 2016
Is the presidential race over? The MIRS team opines on whether Donald Trump's "hot mic" comments from Friday essentially end the presidential race and what impact that has for Congress and other lower ticket races.
Jeff Timmer, a Republican political consultant with Two Rivers Public Affairs, says it's time for the Republicans to kick Trump off the ticket if they have any desire to win the race now that the Trump campaign a "smoking crater."
Also, what happened with the state Supreme Court races? This and more in this week's edition.