Politics & Government

Stories about politics and government actions

"This country needs to learn how to pay its bills, protect its borders [and] invite in legal immigrants." Judi Schwalbach said.
Steve Carmody / Michigan Radio

Michigan Republican leaders insist their party is united, despite Monday’s unrest on the floor of the Republican National Convention.

Anti-Donald Trump forces had collected enough signatures to force a roll call vote on the party’s official rules. But supporters of the presumptive nominee, Donald Trump, circulated a form enabling delegates to remove their names.

GOP officials say delegates from Maine, Minnesota and the District of Columbia pulled their names from petitions calling for a state-by-state roll call vote on the rules. That short-circuited the anti-Trump move.

steve carmody / Michigan Radio

Flint’s drinking water crisis took center stage at the Republican National Convention today, if only for a moment.

Michigan Attorney General Bill Schuette is the only Michigander scheduled to speak from the podium during the convention’s four-day run at the Quicken Loans Arena.

Gov. Chris Christie, R-NJ, spoke to the Michigan RNC delegation at their hotel in Cuyahoga Falls.
Steve Carmody / Michigan Radio

Michigan’s delegates to the Republican National Convention cheered a former rival to Donald Trump when he called for all Republicans to back the presumptive Republican presidential nominee.

New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie was an hour late getting to the Michigan delegation meeting at a hotel in Cuyahoga Falls, but his message to the delegates was in tune with the sentiment with most in the room.

There’s a new chief for the embattled state Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) but the effort to restore confidence to the agency that was a huge part of the Flint water crisis is off to a rocky start.

steve carmody / Michigan Radio

  In Cleveland later this morning, a coalition of Muslim groups plan to hold a news conference to "Challenge the GOP’s  'Politics of Fear'."

Concern about growing islamophobia has led to a push to get more Muslim Michiganders to the polls in November. 

Last month, services at mosques in Michigan were crowded with people observing Ramadan.

On the final Friday of Ramadan, as worshippers gathered at a mosque in Canton, they were greeted by volunteers trying to get them registered to vote.

steve carmody / Michigan Radio

Michigan’s Republican delegates get down to work Monday, after spending the weekend partying in Cleveland.

Cleveland has been rocking all weekend with Republican Party parties.

Michigan delegates spent part of Sunday at the House of Blues, a party hosted by Lt. Gov. Brian Calley. But Calley says they’re ready to get started.

“We’re really excited about the energy in the room,” says Calley. “The delegation is ready for this convention to get inspired about this election season so we can win in November.”

steve carmody / Michigan Radio

A Michigan Republican delegate who's trying to stop Donald Trump from getting the nomination at the GOP Convention insists the fight isn’t over.

Wendy Day looks at the “Dump Trump” movement in football terms.

And it’s a game now deep in the fourth quarter.   But it’s a game where the Trump faction has scored all the points.

They have the votes and the convention rules committee blocked an effort to let delegates change their vote.

Still Day isn’t throwing in the towel just yet.

Rashida Tlaid says Donald Trump's rhetoric has caused damage that will take years to address.
flickr user Gage Skidmore / http://bit.ly/1rFrzRK

The Republican National Convention opens in Cleveland on Monday.

Michigan Radio’s Steve Carmody is in Cleveland now to keep track of what’s going on.

Carmody covered the Republican Convention four years ago too and said this year will be a bit different.

steve carmody / Michigan Radio

Presumptive Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump’s selection of Indiana Governor Mike Pence as his running mate is getting approving nods from Michigan delegates in Cleveland.

Trump announced his decision over his favorite medium: Twitter.

Detroit Firefighters
City of Detroit Fire Department / Facebook.com

Most Detroit firefighters should get a pay bump as soon as next month,

Under a tentative deal struck by Mayor Mike Duggan and the fire union, firefighters who cross-train as medical first responders will get the 4% raise.

The city says that 26 of the fire department’s 46 companies are currently doing medical runs, and that’s helped bring average EMS response times down to around 8 minutes. That's in line with the national average.

Downtown Cleveland will play host to the 2016 Republican National Convention, which begins Monday.
Erik Drost / Flickr - http://j.mp/1SPGCl0

Headed to Cleveland next week for the Republican National Convention? We've gathered up some tips on where to go from a now proud native of the "City of Losers Winners!"

Michigan Radio's news director, Vincent Duffy, wants you to know there's a lot more to his hometown than just LeBron James and the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.

Among Duffy's go-to spots:

(photo by Steve Carmody/Michigan Radio)

Governor Rick Snyder has asked the Michigan Supreme Court to offer an opinion on whether it’s ever possible for the state to give money to a private or parochial school.

There’s a question over a $2.5 million budget in the new state budget. It’s set aside to reimburse private and religious schools for immunization reports, safety drills, and other state mandates that are not related to curriculum.

Stateside 7.14.2016

Jul 14, 2016

Today, we talk with a man as he walks to the Republican National Convention. He's looking for the Midwestern political voice. And, we hear how animal waste from factory farms is contaminating Lake Erie.

To find individual interviews, click here or see below:

Drew Philp is walking from Detroit to the RNC in Cleveland, passing fields like this one near Monroe, Mich.
Courtesy of Drew Philp

Cleveland is just days away from hosting this year’s Republican National Convention. Delegates, candidates, and reporters are flying and driving from across the world cover the event.

However, Drew Philp chose to use his own two feet. He’s coming all the way from Detroit and documenting his journey for Belt magazine.

And why did he choose the RNC as his destination?

“It’s closer than Philadelphia,” Philp laughed. “But I’m also curious about Donald Trump.”

Heidi Grether, Gov. Rick Snyder's appointee for head of the Department of Environmental Quality.
Courtesy photo / Gov. Snyder

Gov. Rick Snyder has appointed Heidi Grether as the new head of the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality, his office announced today.

Grether is the current deputy director for the Michigan Agency for Energy and is a former executive at BP America, where she helped manage Gulf Coast restoration efforts after the Deepwater Horizon disaster of 2010.

Snyder said in the press release:

Congressman Dan Kildee
Photo courtesy of the Office of Congressman Dan Kildee

Democrats in Congress want House Speaker Paul Ryan to send money to Flint before Congress adjourns for seven weeks.

Congressman Dan Kildee of Flint sent a letter to Speaker Ryan, saying Congress should vote on The families of Flint Act, which Kidlee proposed earlier this year.

The act would pay for infrastructure repairs, health monitoring and economic development in Flint amid the ongoing water crisis.

Kildee says Congress should act now because Flint is still in need two years after the lead contamination became news.

Protestors rally in Ann Arbor

Jul 13, 2016
Catherine Shaffer

About 700 protesters marched on downtown Ann Arbor Wednesday night to protest the loss of black lives in recent police shootings.

The protest, organized via Facebook by University of Michigan students, drew a large and enthusiastic crowd. Protesters lined State Street in front of the Michigan Union, chanting and waving signs in support of the Black Lives Matter movement. They then marched through downtown Ann Arbor with a police escort.

Stateside 7.13.2016

Jul 13, 2016

Today, we talk with a Vietnam vet from Ypsilanti who will receive the Medal of Honor on Monday. And, a Syrian refugee family shares their memories of home.

To find individual interviews, click here or see below:

Detroit's new Red Wings arena under construction.
Rick Briggs / Flickr / HTTP://J.MP/1SPGCL0

Detroiters may get to choose between two, competing ballot proposals in November.

Both lay out a process for negotiating community benefits agreements with developers of large, publicly-subsidized projects.

Community benefits can range from job opportunities to health and safety protections. Such agreements are sometimes touted as a way to make sure neighborhood residents see gains from big development in their midst.

Michigan Attorney General Bill Schuette
Joe Ross / http://j.mp/1SPGCl0 / cropped

State Attorney General Bill Schuette says he's slated to speak at the Republican National Convention in Cleveland next week.

In a message on his Facebook page, Schuette says Cleveland is an exciting opportunity to "build a unified team" and "take back the presidency."

“We simply will not turn the keys to the White House over to Hillary Clinton. And Cleveland is where it all starts,” Schutte said.

The post doesn't mention presumptive Republican nominee Donald Trump.

The Michigan Legislature meets today, but don't hold your breath expecting a whole lot to happen.

Our It's Just Politics team of Zoe Clark and Rick Pluta joined us today to take a look at the attendance card for the state Legislature. 

Clark told us that the House is scheduled to meet 80 days while the Senate scheduled 83, for a total of 163 days this session. That's more than 40 days short of the average 205 days per session. 

Retired U.S. Army Lt. Col. Charles Kettles
Jodie Westrick / Michigan Radio

Next Monday, the nation will say thank you to 86-year-old Charles Kettles.

President Obama will present the Vietnam veteran helicopter pilot with the Medal of Honor, the military’s highest award, for a courageous rescue mission in the heat of ferocious combat.

U.S. Rep. John Conyers, D-Mich., is co-chairing a working group that will discuss violence against law enforcement and police brutality.
Photo courtesy of www.conyers.house.gov

With the past weeks marred by the murder of five police officers in Dallas and controversy surrounding the officer-involved killings of two black men days earlier, U.S. Rep. John Conyers is taking action. 

Conyers, who represents Michigan's 13th Congressional District (including most of Wayne County), will partner with U.S. Rep. Bob Goodlatte, R-Va., to lead a working  group "to examine police accountability, aggression towards law enforcement, and public safety concerns related to these issues." 

Work crew replacing a lead service line in Flint.
Steve Carmody / Michigan Radio

The city of Flint plans to move ahead with plans to remove more lead service lines.

Pipes connecting homes to city water mains are a prime source of lead in Flint’s drinking water.

But so far, of the thousands of suspect service lines under city streets, only 33 have been replaced. 

Now Mayor Karen Weaver says she’s asking the city council to approve contracts with two Flint companies (Goyette Mechanical and WT Stevens Construction, Inc.) to remove 250 service lines as part of a new pilot program.

Jack Lessenberry
Michigan Radio

This Week in Michigan Politics, Jack Lessenberry discusses best practices at the Detroit Police Department following recent shootings involving police officers, legislation that would make it a hate crime to assault a police officer, and security after Monday's shootings at the Berrien County Courthouse.


Kym Worthy (file photo).
waynecounty.com

Michigan’s largest county has formed a special unit focused on solving and prosecuting crimes against LGBT people.

 

The unit in Wayne County will focus first on prosecuting a dozen current cases – including six murders -- and re-opening three unsolved “cold cases” in Detroit.

 

Wayne County Prosecutor Kym Worthy says crimes against LGBT people often go unreported, and can be more difficult than other cases to solve. 

 

A picture of Viola Liuzzo, in the park that bears her name.
Sarah Cwiek / Michigan Radio

Detroit is launching a two-year investment campaign in some neighborhood parks, starting with a park named for a murdered civil rights activist.

Viola Liuzzo was the Detroit activist and mother killed by Ku Klux Klan members near Selma, Alabama in 1965.

The northwest Detroit park that that honors her was dedicated in 1982, but had fallen into disrepair.

Now, it stands to get almost $1 million in upgrades, from new playscapes and picnic shelters to some functional landscaping.

Stateside 7.12.2016

Jul 12, 2016

Today, we learn about how educational opportunity can improve the lives of inmates. And, we look at the history of bathrooms in America.

To find individual interviews, click here or see below:

According to Terry Kogan, public "multi-user" restrooms didn't really exist in America until the 1870s.
flickr user Ted Eytan / http://j.mp/1SPGCl0

Deciding who should be allowed to use what bathroom has consumed a lot of attention across the country, and certainly here in Michigan.

With all the controversy about public restrooms and transgender people using the ones that match their gender identity, let's roll back the years to figure out just how sex-segregated bathrooms came to be in the first place.

Terry Kogan is a professor at the University of Utah's College of Law. He has spent the past decade considering the rights of transgender people, and the public restroom question in particular. 

More than 300 people came to Ypsilanti High School to participate in a meeting on police-community relations.
Daniel Rayzel / Michigan Radio

Ypsilanti residents are calling for action to improve police-community relations following related nationwide events over the past week.

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