democrats http://michiganradio.org en Report: Unmarried women could be critical voting bloc this fall in Michigan http://michiganradio.org/post/report-unmarried-women-could-be-critical-voting-bloc-fall-michigan <p>A new report suggests unmarried women may be a critical swing vote in Michigan’s elections this fall.</p><p></p><p>The Voter Participation Center works to get more unmarried women, people of color, and young people to vote. But those groups tend to show the biggest voting&nbsp;dropoff in off-year elections.</p><p></p><p>Those also happen to be the voters Democrats need &nbsp;to win in this fall’s gubernatorial and congressional elections.</p><p></p> Mon, 07 Apr 2014 21:56:47 +0000 Steve Carmody 17140 at http://michiganradio.org Report: Unmarried women could be critical voting bloc this fall in Michigan Farm bill faces critical vote today http://michiganradio.org/post/farm-bill-faces-critical-vote-today <p>The U.S. House of Representatives is expected to vote today on the long-delayed federal farm bill.</p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">U.S. Sen. Debbie </span>Stabenow<span style="line-height: 1.5;"> of Michigan was a key player in the long, drawn-out negotiations on the multi-billion dollar legislation.</span></p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">She’s the chairwoman of the U.S. Senate Agriculture committee.</span></p><p>Stabenow<span style="line-height: 1.5;"> says she’s glad to see the new farm bill will shift spending to insurance programs and away from direct subsidies to farmers.</span></p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">“For decades folks have been talking about eliminating direct payments. It’s never happened. And in this farm bill, we do that,” says </span>Stabenow<span style="line-height: 1.5;">.</span></p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">The farm bill also contains a compromise on federal food assistance programs.</span></p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">The bill calls for a 1% cut in food assistance spending. That is more than Democrats wanted, but far less than Republicans wanted.</span></p><p> Wed, 29 Jan 2014 11:05:00 +0000 Steve Carmody 16213 at http://michiganradio.org Farm bill faces critical vote today Can Democrats win the Michigan House? http://michiganradio.org/post/can-democrats-win-michigan-house <p>The last three years haven’t been great ones to be in the legislature – if you are a Democrat. Republicans are in control, and they’ve rammed through bills whose passage would have been unimaginable five years ago. Right to work, for example.</p><p>Two years ago, Democrats hoped to win control of the state House of Representatives, to gain some leverage. They did gain five seats, thanks in part to a large turnout and President Obama winning Michigan by nearly half a million votes. But they still fell short, thanks in part to redistricting. More than 400,000 more votes were cast for Democrats, but gerrymandering meant when the dust had settled, Republicans had 59, Democrats, 51. Mon, 27 Jan 2014 16:52:58 +0000 Jack Lessenberry 16189 at http://michiganradio.org Can Democrats win the Michigan House? Budget experts predict an extra $1.1 billion in state government revenues over 3 years http://michiganradio.org/post/budget-experts-predict-extra-11-billion-state-government-revenues-over-3-years <p>LANSING, Mich. (AP) - Michigan legislative budget experts say state government is taking in hundreds of millions of dollars more than expected eight months ago.<br /><br /><a href="http://www.house.mi.gov/hfa/PDF/Revenue_Forecast/EconomicOutlook_Revenue_Estimates_Jan14.pdf">A report released Tuesday from the House Fiscal Agency</a> in Lansing estimates Michigan collected $433 million more than projected in the last budget year and will collect about $327 million more this year.<br /> Wed, 08 Jan 2014 00:53:31 +0000 The Associated Press 15926 at http://michiganradio.org Budget experts predict an extra $1.1 billion in state government revenues over 3 years PAC spending is expected to be a big part of the 2014 election year in Michigan http://michiganradio.org/post/pac-spending-expected-be-big-part-2014-election-year-michigan <p>2014 will be a big election year in Michigan and spending by <a href="http://www.opensecrets.org/pacs/pacfaq.php">Political Action Committee</a>s is expected to be just as big.</p><p></p><p>Rich Robinson is the director of the <a href="http://www.mcfn.org/">Michigan Campaign Finance Network.</a></p><p></p> Sat, 04 Jan 2014 19:16:00 +0000 Steve Carmody 15878 at http://michiganradio.org PAC spending is expected to be a big part of the 2014 election year in Michigan Former Nixon Administration official says it's time for a new political party: The Moderate Majority http://michiganradio.org/post/former-nixon-administration-official-says-its-time-new-political-party-moderate-majority <p> (<em>Editor's note: This interview was first broadcast on November 14, 2013</em>)</p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">Polls following last month’s partial federal shutdown make it pretty clear: Americans are tired of both Republican and Democratic lawmakers. </span><a href="http://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/poll-major-damage-to-gop-after-shutdown-and-broad-dissatisfaction-with-government/2013/10/21/dae5c062-3a84-11e3-b7ba-503fb5822c3e_story.html" style="line-height: 1.5;">Two-thirds of Republicans</a><span style="line-height: 1.5;"> and Republican-leaning independents disapproved of the shutdown. Fifty-seven percent of Americans were angry with the way </span><a href="http://politicalticker.blogs.cnn.com/2013/10/07/cnn-shutdown-poll-plenty-of-blame-to-go-around/" style="line-height: 1.5;">Democrats handled</a><span style="line-height: 1.5;"> the shutdown. In total, eight in 10 Americans say they oppose the shutdown. Tue, 24 Dec 2013 21:38:00 +0000 Stateside Staff 15285 at http://michiganradio.org Former Nixon Administration official says it's time for a new political party: The Moderate Majority Awkward: UAW official praises Democratic candidate for governor while the GOP incumbent listens http://michiganradio.org/post/awkward-uaw-official-praises-democratic-candidate-governor-while-gop-incumbent-listens <p>Today’s announcement that General Motors will spend $1.3 billion upgrading plants in Michigan proved to be a little awkward for one of the dignitaries on the dais.</p><p></p><p>It’s probably not a surprise that Governor Snyder got a few boos from union members in the audience, given that the first anniversary of the governor signing Right to Work into law was just last week.</p><p></p><p>Perhaps less expected, the Republican governor had to sit and listen as UAW regional director Norwood Jewell praised Snyder’s Democratic opponent in next year’s election.</p><p></p> Tue, 17 Dec 2013 02:50:48 +0000 Steve Carmody 15715 at http://michiganradio.org Awkward: UAW official praises Democratic candidate for governor while the GOP incumbent listens Michigan's congressional delegation divided on government shutdown/debt ceiling vote http://michiganradio.org/post/michigans-congressional-delegation-divided-government-shutdowndebt-ceiling-vote <p></p><p>Last night&rsquo;s vote to end the federal government shutdown and raise the debt ceiling divided Michigan&rsquo;s Republican congress.</p><p>The legislation reopens the government through Jan. 15<sup>th</sup> and permits the U.S. Treasury to borrow normally through Feb. 7<sup>th</sup> or perhaps a month longer.<br />&nbsp;</p><p>Congress faced a midnight deadline Thursday. That&#39;s when U.S. Treasury Secretary Jacob Lew had said the government would reach the current $16.7 trillion debt limit and could no longer borrow to meet its obligations.</p> Thu, 17 Oct 2013 03:41:48 +0000 Steve Carmody 14870 at http://michiganradio.org Michigan's congressional delegation divided on government shutdown/debt ceiling vote Polls suggest the federal government shutdown is hurting 3 Michigan congressmen's reelection hopes http://michiganradio.org/post/polls-suggest-federal-government-shutdown-hurting-3-michigan-congressmens-reelection-hopes <p>The reelection chances of three Michigan congressmen might be hurt by the federal government shutdown.</p><p>The poll numbers show Republican Congressmen <a href="http://s3.moveon.org/shutdownpolling/mi7results.pdf">Tim Walberg</a>, <a href="http://s3.moveon.org/shutdownpolling/mi11results.pdf">Kerry Bentivolio</a> and <a href="http://s3.moveon.org/shutdownpolling/mi1results.pdf">Dan Benishek</a> all trailing significantly behind a generic Democratic opponent.&nbsp;</p> Mon, 07 Oct 2013 19:57:00 +0000 Steve Carmody 14751 at http://michiganradio.org Polls suggest the federal government shutdown is hurting 3 Michigan congressmen's reelection hopes Former state lawmaker to run for Michigan's 7th congressional district seat http://michiganradio.org/post/former-state-lawmaker-run-michigans-7th-congressional-district-seat <p>A former state lawmaker is launching her bid to challenge mid-Michigan Congressman Tim Walberg in 2014.</p><p></p><p>Pam Byrnes announced her campaign for the Democratic Party nomination today.</p><p></p><p>She is an attorney from Chelsea with a background in family law.&nbsp; &nbsp;&nbsp;She is the former Director of the Washtenaw County Friend of the Court.&nbsp; Byrnes was also the Executive Director of the University of Michigan-Shanghai Jiao Tong University Joint Institute.&nbsp;</p><p></p><p>Byrnes says Washington is broken and that is hurting middle class families.&nbsp;</p><p></p> Thu, 18 Jul 2013 15:07:14 +0000 Steve Carmody 13599 at http://michiganradio.org Former state lawmaker to run for Michigan's 7th congressional district seat The chief of staff to Michigan's Speaker of the House leaving for new job http://michiganradio.org/post/chief-staff-michigans-speaker-house-leaving-new-job <p>LANSING, Mich. (AP) - Michigan House Speaker Jase Bolger's chief of staff is leaving to take a job in the private sector in northern Michigan.<br><br>Bolger on Wednesday announced that Suzanne Miller Allen will resign at the end of August. She's a long-time Republican staffer who splits her time between Lansing and Traverse City, an area her husband Jason represented as a state lawmaker from 1999 through 2010.<br><br>Allen also was chief of staff to former Senate Majority Leader Ken Sikkema and former House Speaker Paul Hillegonds.<br> Wed, 17 Jul 2013 22:59:20 +0000 The Associated Press 13591 at http://michiganradio.org The chief of staff to Michigan's Speaker of the House leaving for new job State Senate may vote next month on expanding Medicaid in Michigan http://michiganradio.org/post/state-senate-may-vote-next-month-expanding-medicaid-michigan <p>There could be a vote in the state Senate in late August on a bill to extend Medicaid health coverage to thousands of un-insured working poor people.</p><p></p><p>That’s despite Governor Rick Snyder’s call for a vote earlier than that.</p><p></p><p>The governor has said waiting until late August could jeopardize the state’s ability to get federal approval, and then sign up people in time for coverage to begin when the new federal healthcare law takes effect in January.</p><p></p><p>The state House has already passed its version of a Medicaid bill.</p><p></p> Wed, 17 Jul 2013 22:36:09 +0000 Rick Pluta 13588 at http://michiganradio.org State Senate may vote next month on expanding Medicaid in Michigan Michigan Farm Bureau not happy with US-House-passed Farm Bill http://michiganradio.org/post/michigan-farm-bureau-not-happy-us-house-passed-farm-bill <p>Michigan’s agribusiness leaders are hoping Congress will restore food assistance programs to the 2013 Farm Bill.</p><p>House Republicans approved a Farm Bill on Thursday, without any funding for food stamp programs, like&nbsp;the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, otherwise known as SNAP.</p><p>For decades, Congress has approved massive spending bills to help the nation’s farmers and provide help for the poor to buy food. But conservative House members passed a Farm Bill without the food stamp funding.</p> Thu, 11 Jul 2013 21:01:08 +0000 Steve Carmody 13503 at http://michiganradio.org Michigan Farm Bureau not happy with US-House-passed Farm Bill Supreme Court to hear case which directly affects Panera Bread workers in Michigan http://michiganradio.org/post/supreme-court-hear-case-which-directly-affects-panera-bread-workers-michigan <p>The United States Supreme Court has agreed to hear arguments in a dispute between President Obama and congressional Republicans which is directly affecting the lives of Michigan workers.</p><p>At issue is the president’s authority to make "recess" appointments.</p><p>Recess appointments are made when the president fills a governmental position while the Congress is in recess.</p><p>In this case, President Obama filled three vacancies on the National Labor Relations Board without getting his appointees confirmed by Congress.</p> Mon, 24 Jun 2013 16:00:12 +0000 Steve Carmody 13205 at http://michiganradio.org Supreme Court to hear case which directly affects Panera Bread workers in Michigan Gov. Snyder: Calls for special Medicaid session moot http://michiganradio.org/post/gov-snyder-calls-special-medicaid-session-moot <p>LANSING, Mich. (AP) - Michigan Governor Rick Snyder says a Democrat's call for him to convene an emergency legislative session to pressure the Senate to pass Medicaid expansion is moot for now.<br><br>The Republican governor says the Legislature has a session day scheduled on July 3rd.<br><br>Spokesman Ken Silfven said Friday that the Senate should "take care of business" on July 3rd. While the Senate technically will be in session that day and others, attendance won't be taken and no business will be voted on until August 27th.<br> Sat, 22 Jun 2013 13:43:00 +0000 The Associated Press 13200 at http://michiganradio.org Gov. Snyder: Calls for special Medicaid session moot Commentary: Women's health and the Democrats http://michiganradio.org/post/commentary-womens-health-and-democrats <p>Democrats did something unusual yesterday. They came out with some new ideas and announced a package of things and innovative reforms they are for, rather than against.</p><p>The subject was mainly women’s health care, and for once, the party seems united around a well-thought out package of bills. Tim Griemel, who is still finding his voice as House Minority Leader, told a press conference “when a woman doesn’t get the health care she needs when she is pregnant, it isn’t just her own health that’s at stake. When a woman can’t get the care she needs after a violent attack, everyone who loves and supports her suffers along with her.”</p><p> Tue, 14 May 2013 12:53:54 +0000 Jack Lessenberry 12553 at http://michiganradio.org Commentary: Women's health and the Democrats Michigan road funding talks still at standstill http://michiganradio.org/post/michigan-road-funding-talks-still-standstill <p>LANSING, Mich. (AP) - High-level talks over fixing Michigan's deteriorating roads are at a standstill.<br><br>Republican and Democratic leaders can't agree much on how to even proceed.<br><br>Feeling burned by passage of a right-to-work law, Democrats won't consider tax increases without public assurances that Gov. Rick Snyder will veto other legislation. Democrats want a repeal of a law guaranteeing better wages on government construction projects taken off the table, along with talk of dividing the state's electoral votes proportionally.<br> Sat, 11 May 2013 17:58:00 +0000 The Associated Press 12529 at http://michiganradio.org Michigan road funding talks still at standstill Michigan lawmakers look for ways of closing the online sales tax loophole http://michiganradio.org/post/michigan-lawmakers-look-ways-closing-online-sales-tax-loophole <p>Michigan lawmakers are looking at how to get online retailers to collect state sales taxes.</p><p></p><p>Currently, shoppers are supposed to report any sales taxes they owe on online purchases, and pay them with their income tax.</p><p></p><p>But most people don’t.</p><p></p><p>State Representative Eileen Kowall’s bill would put the responsibility on the online retailer.&nbsp;&nbsp; She’s quick to say this is not a tax increase, just making sure that the taxes that are owed are being paid.</p><p></p> Tue, 30 Apr 2013 21:01:16 +0000 Steve Carmody 12349 at http://michiganradio.org Michigan lawmakers look for ways of closing the online sales tax loophole Is it time to expand workplace safety regulations in Michigan? http://michiganradio.org/post/it-time-expand-workplace-safety-regulations-michigan <p>Union leaders are applauding a promise by state Democratic lawmakers to reinstate workplace safety regulations in Michigan.</p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">The names of dozens of Michigan workers who died on the job were read aloud during a ceremony in Lansing. There are about 120 deaths in the workplace every year in Michigan.</span></p> Mon, 29 Apr 2013 19:22:10 +0000 Steve Carmody 12326 at http://michiganradio.org Is it time to expand workplace safety regulations in Michigan? Democrats call for repealing some state taxes http://michiganradio.org/post/democrats-call-repealing-some-state-taxes <p>State House Democrats spent “tax day” pushing a plan to repeal several state tax policies.<br>&nbsp;</p> Tue, 16 Apr 2013 00:26:42 +0000 Jake Neher 12149 at http://michiganradio.org Democrats call for repealing some state taxes