One of the most important midterm elections of our lifetime is only one week away. The results will determine whether President Trump’s agenda can continue to be implemented, or if it will come to a grinding halt. If Democrats take back control of either chamber of Congress the latter will be the case. It is likely the Democrats will use this power to begin investigations of the Trump administration, with the President’s tax returns at the top of the list.
This year, all statewide offices are on the ballot. Michiganders will choose a new governor, attorney general, secretary of state, and local representatives and senators among other elected positions. These make up the backbone of the state government and are extremely important in making key decisions that will affect Michigan for years to come. Since 2011 Republicans have controlled all of these offices. This could all change next week.
Democrat Gretchen Whitmer is running against Republican Bill Schuette for the governor’s seat in Michigan.
During a debate between the two candidates, Whitmer laid out her plan for fixing the roads by allocating $3 billion for infrastructure and raising new revenue. Schuette’s plan for infrastructure is underdeveloped. In contrast to Whitmer’s statement, he said he would allocate an unspecified amount to fix Michigan’s roads and wouldn’t raise any new revenue to do it.
On environmental issues, Whitmer has committed to shutting down Line 5.
“We cannot wait. And we can’t wait for a tunnel to be built either. We have to get the threat out of the water now or as quickly as legally possible,” said Whitmer in a recent interview.
She’s also been endorsed by Sierra Club, an influential grassroots environmental organization. This goes to show that she is the common-sense candidate for environmental solutions.
On the other hand, Schuette has offered less drastic and effective solutions, such as building a tunnel around the pipeline.
Whitmer has the grit and the know-how to get her goals accomplished in Michigan. As Michigan Senate minority leader, she worked across the aisle to get important legislation passed. One of her major victories in the Senate was expanding health coverage in Michigan through Healthy Michigan, which gave 680,000 more Michiganders healthcare.
Secretary of State
Running for secretary of state is Democratic candidate Jocelyn Benson and Republican candidate Mary Treder Lang.
According to followthemoney.org, Lang has donations from several members of the DeVos family. In total, the DeVos family has contributed over $40,000 to her campaign, which makes up about 15% of her total campaign contributions.
On the other hand, Benson isn’t bought and paid for by the DeVos’. By shining a light on the secret money flowing into our election process and requiring instant disclosure of all money to and from political organizations and lobbyists, Benson will champion reform that will make Michigan one of the best states in the nation.
Benson is also a champion for voting rights. As an election law expert, she has over a decade of experience being a national leader in election law and administration. She supports no-reason absentee voting and has expressed her support for proposal three, which has been celebrated as an expansion of voting rights in Michigan.
Lang has publicly opposed the proposal along with other Republicans who are critical of the straight-ticket voting and same day registration that comes along with passing this proposal.
Benson also announced a 30 minute or less promise plan to ensure that wait times at the secretary of state offices are dramatically reduced.
Benson is clearly the more qualified candidate, and her policies are far more beneficial for Michiganders than Lang’s.
Running for Attorney General is Democratic candidate Dana Nessel and Republican candidate Tom Leonard.
Similar to Lang, Leonard has accepted several thousands of dollars from the DeVos family. He also has accepted over $24,000 from Blue Cross Blue Shield, over $19,000 from DTE Energy, and over $16,000 from the Michigan Chamber of Commerce. These are just some of the donations he has received from corporations and other organizations with a vested interest in maximizing profits. The office of the Attorney General is supposed to protect Michiganders and it is clear Tom Leonard has some conflict of interest.
Nessel is the superior candidate. She is committed to protecting the environment as well as civil rights. She plans on shutting down Line 5 and enforce environmental laws and prosecuting polluters. Nessel is a staunch supporter of LGBTQ rights and is dedicated to prosecuting hate crimes and all cases of discrimination. She is also an advocate for greater inclusion in civil rights laws.
Democrats have an exceptional field of candidates on the ballot. It’s time to take back control of our government so that it is concerned about all Michiganders, not just the wealthy.