Wednesday, June 07, 2006

Michigan Politics News

We live in interesting times.

1. The State Senate has voted for the "Stand Your Ground" law. For reasons that are unclear to me, this consists of a package of six bills. They approved two of them today and should vote on the rest tomorrow. (UPDATE: All the bills have been approved.) They were approved by 28-10 and 30-8 votes.

2. The so-called K-16 Initiative will be on the ballot in November, as it was certified by the state Board of Canvassers. I'll have more to say about this later, but for now this excerpt will suffice:

"Legislative leaders and Gov. Jennifer Granholm and her likely GOP opponent, Dick DeVos, oppose the initiative. A coalition of groups representing local government, hospitals, police and business is planning an ad campaign against it.

Rich Studley, of the Michigan Chamber of Commerce, said the chamber and other groups will vigorously oppose the initiative. He said the proposal calls for more spending without any guarantee of improved quality or identified funding source.

``We feel very strongly that the Legislature has no obligation whatsoever to take up a one-sided and self-serving proposal,'' he said."

3. The Kalamazoo City Commission has voted to oppose the Iraq war and the Michigan Civil Rights Initiative. Liberals Don Cooney, Bobby Hopewell, Sean McCann, and David Anderson voted for both resolutions. Commissioners Mary Balkema, Hannah McKinney, and Barb Miller abstained. In a strange twist, it turns out that the Kalamazoo City Commission has no control over foreign policy.

This caught my attention: "An identical vote of four "yes'' votes and three abstentions passed a second resolution supporting "continuation of voluntary public-sector affirmative-action programs in education, contracting and employment.''"

What exactly is a voluntary affirmative action program? Do people freely agree to be discriminated against?

UPDATE: The County Commission has also discussed the issue.

4. Jack Hoogendyk writes on behalf of English as the official language of Michigan in the Detroit Free Press.

"Declaring English as the state language is the right thing to do for all in Michigan, because of cost, unity and economic opportunity for everyone."

5. Human Events reports on how Debbie Stabenow is connected to Jack Abramoff.

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