The following is an unedited interview Sen. Bert Johnson (D-Highland Park) conducted with 910 AM Superstation host Steve Hood at 7:30 a.m. July 24 during which he maintains his innocence of the criminal charges leveled against him.
What is Sen. Patrick Colbeck's path to the Governor's chair? As the two-term state senator launches his campaign for 2018, MIRS explores how it's possible the anti-establishment, conservative lawmaker can be victorious in a Republican primary.
Also, is this year's legislature as productive as those in year's past? The MIRS team looks at the numbers to give an answer to that question. And how is it possible long-time, complex issues like no-fault auto insurance reform or municipal retirement benefit reform gets done this term?
Michigan will be out $800 million in Medicaid funding if the U.S. Senate passes its reforms to the Affordable Care Act, said Dennis Paradis, executive director of the Michigan Health Policy Forum at Michigan State University. How will that impact the state's Healthy Michigan program and the some 600,000 newly insured recipients? Paradis gives his opinion on this and the pathway he sees toward a "single payer" health care system in the United States.
The MIRS team gives its take on Kid Rock's new webpage advertising an alleged U.S. Senate campaign run. And what would happen if Calley's part-time legislature proposal is adopted by voters? Could legislators reject the presumption in the initiative that they would need to cut their pay in half. The answer is yes. Find out how.
The MIRS team talks electric vehicle roll-out issues with Mike ALAIMO, executive director of Clean Fuels Michigan. Also, we dissect the "reset" of Lt. Gov. Brian CALLEY's part time legislature initiative, the latest entrant into the battle over Michigan's 8th Congressional district and the latest on the "Good Jobs" tax credit package that is stalled in the Michigan House. Will lawmakers' Wednesday return push that package forward?
What are the odds U.S. Rep. Fred Upton (R-St. Joseph) joins the growing Republican U.S. Senate primary pool? What are the odds someone else of considerable political or financial clout gets into the GOP presidential primary? Stu Sandler and Jamie Roe of Grand River Strategies joins the MIRS team with their prognostications.
Sandler explains why he believes the part-time legislature campaign headed by Lt. Gov. Brian Calley is a "clown car" and why Roe believes President Donald Trump not only finishes his first term, but finishes a second. This and much more in this week's episode sponsored by AT&T.
T.J. Bucholz and Jen Eyer from Vanguard Public Affairs join the MIRS team to put percentages on the likelihood of Mark Bernstein, Mark Hackel, Mike Duggan and others getting into the Democratic gubernatorial race. What do they think has been holding Democrats back in recent elections?
Will President Donald Trump finish his term? Will Lt. Gov. Brian Calley's part-time legislature proposal make the ballot? These and other questions are posed to a pair of former spokespeople for Democratic gubernatorial candidates.
If you think the legislative redo of the teachers' retirement system was rammed through the Legislature too quickly, Rep. Tom Albert argues you haven't been paying attention to what he and other lawmakers have been working on for months. The House's floor leader on the Michigan Public School Employees Retirement System (MPSERS) talks to MIRS about his interest in the subject and answers several questions.
Also, Elmer Cerano, executive director of Michigan Protective Advocacy Service, Inc., talks about his hestitation with running a pilot program that allows an insurance company to integrate physical and mental health services for Medicaid patients.
What are the chances DHHS Director Nick Lyon attempts to plea out of his homicide charges with the Attorney General? Why is Patrick Anderson trying to throw a wrench in part-time legislature ballot proposal? The MIRS teams kicks around these subjects and more.
House Speaker Tom Leonard (R-DeWitt) talked to the press this afternoon, moments after briefing his Republican caucus on the budget deal reached with himself, Senate Majority Leader Arlan Meekhof and Gov. Rick Snyder on the Fiscal Year (FY) 2018 budget and the reforms to the Michigan Public School Employees Retirement System or MPERS.
Former Board of Education President John Austin isn't running for Governor, but he does have a new political action committee that he hopes will help drive a specific agenda. What is this agenda? Who does he like in the governor's race? What happened in the 2016 election that he believes needs to change in 2018?
The MIRS team talks about how the $500,000 fine will have a lingering impact on the Michigan Democratic Party outside of the financial concerns, which talking points can prevent Republicans from bailing on Enbridge and its Line 5 under the Mackinac Straits and whether the proposed teacher retirement compromise could bring over well more than the legislative votes needed to pass.
Lt. Gov. Brian Calley goes deeper into his part-time legislature idea with MIRS Publisher John Reurink. How much does he think it will cost? Who is making the operational decisions? What role will Calley have in the day-to-day operations? What does his wife, Rep. Julie Calley, think of it all? Calley answers these and other questions.
Also, the MIRS team discusses whether Gov. Rick Snyder is prepared to forego his streak of six budgets finished in June in defense of keeping the teacher pension system open to new hires? Why did Detroit Mayor Mike Duggan make his speech on race at the Detroit Chamber event on Mackinac Island as opposed to the city of Detroit and does Calley embracing a part-time legislature make him the "change" candidate?