August 19, 2019
Was the spectacle that became the appointment of David Coulter as Oakland County executive a "debacle?" How do Oakland County Democrats repair the public's perception of what happened? Former Oakland County Democratic Chair Frank Houston gives his perceptions.
Michigan Education Association President Paula Herbart talks about the state budget (24:19) and MIRS reporter Mike Malott gives his report from the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) annual conference from Austin, Texas (17:51).
August 12, 2019
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.
Wittenberg also announces that he'll be running for Oakland County Treasurer as current Treasurer Andy Meisner runs for county executive (18:56). Forsmark handicaps the GOP 10th Congressional District primary at this early stage (9:14) and MIRS Editor reports back from vacation with some Beaver Island history.
August 5, 2019
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.
MIRS Monday brings back Andrea Bitely, now of Truscott Rossman, to recap the Detroit Democratic presidential debates. Listen to 90 seconds of audio reporters were able to score with Elizabeth Warren after the debates and how reporters were kept cool during the debates.
July 29, 2019
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.
July 24, 2019
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
July 22, 2019
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.
July 15, 2019
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.
July 8, 2019
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)?
July 1, 2019
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.
June 24, 2019
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)