Will a politically split Oakland County Commission support former Chair Dave Woodward as the county's next executive? Rep. Robert Wittenberg (D-Huntington Woods) and political consultant Dave Forsmark give their opinions.
Sen. Adam Hollier (D-Detroit) likes the idea of eliminating the sales tax on gasoline and then raising gas taxes to make up the difference so every state tax dollar collected at the pump goes to roads. He also supports the expansion of sales tax on services as a way to raise money for schools and state government.
In the run-up to the Democratic presidential debates in Detroit, former Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper talks to MIRS about beer, why two guys from Colorado are running for president, the names he was called as a kid, and more interesting bits from his life (18:05).
Outside of his political accomplishments, Hickenlooper talks about Twitter and his great-grandfather, a Civil War soldier who was awarded the rank of general at age 28.
Also, Jeff Timmer, the former executive director of the Michigan Republican Party, declares himself an independent in the face of a Donald Trump presidency that he feels goes against the Ronald Reagan ideals of what it means to be a conservative.
Timmer talks about his role in the 2011 redistricting process and what he sees coming out of the 2021 redraw with the new citizens commission.
The following is unedited audio of the NAACP presidential forum at Detroit's Cobo Hall with nine Democratic candidates and one Republican candidate:
00:00 -- U.S. Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.)
12:17 -- U.S. Sen. Cory Booker (D-N.J.)
24:09 -- Former Congressman Beto O'Rourke of Texas
36:22 -- South Bend Mayor Pete Buttigieg
48:18 -- former U.S. Housing Secretary Julian Castro
59:39 -- U.S. Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.)
1:11:15 -- U.S. Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.)
1:23:23 -- Former Vice President Joe Biden
1:35:54 -- U.S. Sen. Kamala Harris (D-Calif.)
1:48:26 -- Former Massachusetts Gov. William Weld
Rep. Lynn Afendoulis, a Republican 3rd Congressional District candidate, visits the U.S.-Mexican border and received a firsthand tour of the Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) facility in El Paso, Texas (18:38). She shares her observations and whether she is more or less supportive of President Donald Trump's handling of the border after her visit (34:26).
Also, Kim Trent, chair of the Wayne State Board of Governors, talks about why the 8-member board has developed a contentious 4-4 split that has resulted in one faction suing the other over a vote to purchase property for a new pediatrics building. The board has a 7-1 Democratic-Republican split (37:38).
But first, Progress Michigan Deputy Director Sam Inglot shares how he would react if Gov. Gretchen Whitmer ends up supporting a Line 5 tunnel under the Straits of Mackinac, whether Democrats should give up the ghost on the 1st and 7th congressional districts and why his progressive advocacy group is agitated that "Democrats for Life" is meeting in East Lansing this week.
U.S. Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.) talks about why Michigan is so critical to her shot at winning the Democratic presidential nomination. She talks about her thoughts on Gov. Gretchen Whitmer, U.S. Rep. Justin Amash (I-Cascade Twp.) and more on her campaign bus (apologies on audio quality).
Also, long-time Republican political consultant Steve Linder talks to MIRS about his feelings on potential legal challenges to the new redistricting commission and the changes in how marijuana is regulated in the state.
Does U.S. Rep. Justin Amash (R-Cascade Twp.) breaking from the Republican Party mean he's looking to play spoiler for a Republican nominee in the 3rd Congressional District or President Donald Trump's re-election chances? Stephanie McLean from GMT Strategies assesses this situation along with her projections on Democrats' chances in this district (14:40) with Dem civil rights attorney Hillary Scholten getting into the race (13:46).
Also, the Democratic presidential debates are coming to Michigan. Who are the contenders and who are the pretenders?
Finally, Republican legislative leaders explore bonding to raise revenue for roads. Is this too gimmicky for the state to pull off (23:17)?
Could bonding be part of the final budget picture? Rep. Jon Hoadley (D-Kalamazoo), the lead Democrat on the House Appropriations Committee responds to the possibility. Hoadley also talks about his motivation for running in the 6th Congressional District.
Also the Grassroots Midwest team of Adrian Hemond and Brian Began talk about the impact of the U.S. Supreme Court's redistricting decision on Michigan and if Democrats have any chance of winning next year in the 3rd Congressional District.
House Minority Leader Christine Greig talks in this week's episode about her caucus' road funding bills and if her members support the Governor's 45-cent-a-gallon gas tax increase (22:26). The House leader also talks about her relationship with House Speaker Lee Chatfield after she called him a liar on the House floor (33:53) and if she's rooting for the U.S. Supreme Court to agree that new, redistricted legislative boundaries are needed for the 2020 election (36:53).
The MIRS team is also joined by Ari Adler, the former Senate Republican, House Republican and Gov. Rick Snyder spokesperson, about the budget-making process going forward and whether the debate on Line 5 is a lot of "smoke." (11:32)
Rep. James Lower (R-Eureka Twp.) is taking his claim that he's the person to unseat U.S. Rep. Justin Amash to Washington, D.C. this week. What is his pitch? The Ionia County product talks about his roots in the 3rd Congressional district and why he doesn't think a Democrat can win this seat.
Also, Abby Clark from Vanguard Public Affairs joins the MIRS team to talk about the budding 3rd Congressional District race, the potential political fallout from Benton Harbor schools and the Flint prosecutions being dropped.