South County Democratic Club
The American people have spoken and while there are those who may still disagree with some of the president's policies, it is incumbent upon us all, to pray for the president and support the efforts of the administration to steer the American economy back on the right path.
It is inconceivable that the gridlock we witnessed over the last four years will again rear its ugly head. Congress and the Executive branch of government must find a way to reach meaningful compromise on the important issues of the day.
Congratulations Senator Stabenow
It meant so much to me to have my family join me on stage, including my mom, my children, and my three beautiful grandchildren. They are the inspiration for me to keep fighting every day for Michigan’s future!
I want to thank every American who participated in this election, whether you voted for the very first time or waited in line for a very long time.... Whether you pounded the pavement or picked up the phone, whether you held an Obama sign or a Romney sign, you made your voice heard and you made a difference. -- President Barack Obama
Friends and fellow Democrats,
Last night was an historic night for President Barack Obama. Democrats made American history by re-electing our nation’s first African-American President, and the campaign also made Michigan history. With 97 percent of precincts reporting, President Obama has won Michigan by a 9 percentage point margin. This is a huge margin in a state where Republicans were hyping their ground game and touting certain victory just a few short days ago, a state which the Republican candidate called home in his youth.
The historical significance of last night’s victory cannot be understated. Michigan has now voted for a Democrat for President SIX consecutive times. (For some historical perspective, consider the fact that Michigan went for FDR just three out of four times.)
President Obama wasn’t the only Democrat to win re-election statewide in Michigan last night. U.S. Sen. Debbie Stabenow cruised to victory against former Congressman Pete Hoekstra, winning by more than 900,000 votes, 58 to 38 percent, according to the most recent numbers. Two years ago Republicans were crowing about their prospects in Michigan, but Sen. Stabenow made a compelling case for her re-election by standing up for the auto industry, fighting for Michigan agriculture and protecting the Great Lakes. In addition, Hoekstra’s extreme, Tea Party views on Medicare and Social Security, the Great Lakes and women’s health care turned out not to be Michiganders’ cup of tea.
For six straight elections since 1996, Michigan Democrats have held onto our two U.S. Senate seats, with Sen. Carl Levin winning his seat in 1996 and being re-elected twice, and now Sen. Stabenow winning her third consecutive Senate race.
In addition to President Obama and Sen. Stabenow’s triumphs, Michigan Democrats had wins down the ballot, as well.
John Dingell, John Conyers, Sandy Levin, Gary Peters and Dan Kildee were elected to Congress. And Democrat Dave Curson won the special election to fill Thad McCotter’s remaining term.
In the House, Michigan Democrats made significant progress toward the majority, picking up a net gain of five seats. In addition, Democrats very nearly knocked off corrupt Speaker Jase Bolger in a heavily GOP district. They are in prime position to finish what they started and retake control in 2014. Bolger remains under investigation by a grand jury.
In an extremely close race for the Michigan Supreme Court, Bridget Mary McCormack has won election to the Court, with Judge Connie Marie Kelley coming within about 100,000 votes of taking the second seat.
The Michigan Democratic Party swept the education board races, with all eight of our candidates winning their races. Democrats now control all of the boards by a 6-2 margin.
Democracy was defended in defeating Proposals 1 and 5. While we are disappointed with the results on Proposals 2 and 4, the fight to protect collective bargaining and home health care continues.
Finally, Democrats picked up seats in many local races. For example, Kalamazoo County will have its first Democratic prosecutor since at least 1976. In Eaton County, Democrats defeated an incumbent sheriff. Oakland County voters retained all of their Democratic countywide officeholders and added two new Democrats as Clerk and Water Resources Commissioner. Democrats also added to their majority on the Macomb County Commission. There are many other examples.
All in all, a great night for Michigan Democrats! But none of it could have been possible without the hard work and dedication of our candidates, supporters and volunteers. Thank you and let’s get ready for 2014!
Congratulations Commissioner John Klimek
Also, Congratulations to returning incumbents:
Marletta B. Seats
Mamie L. Yarbrough
Andrew R. Vavra
First, let me start by saying thank you. Thank you. Thank you!
I could not have done any of this without you - without your support, your contributions, your encouragement, and your friendship.
Though the final results did not go the way we’d hoped, when we look at the outcome of our efforts, we have so very much to be proud of. I entered this race just seven months ago because I knew what you knew, that we need people “from out here” who are willing to stand up for our shared beliefs, and fight for our communities in an effort to get past the political partisanship and rancor. That means fighting without prejudice for the small business owners struggling to keep their doors open and the workers on the floor. It means finding meaningful solutions for the tens of thousands who are unemployed right here in the district, and the seniors who rely on Medicare and Social Security just to get by. It means standing with men and women, rich and poor, our seniors and our youth.
With your help we built a campaign that exceeded all expectations. Against one of the most powerful chairmen in Congress we defied all odds. With just $300,000 against his Millions we won 44% of the votes cast for the two of us! Over 135,000 men and women chose our message. This is democracy in action, and you were there with me to prove it still works.
But this pales in comparison with the stories and the lives we’ve touched. From every corner of the district we heard from and were supported by people from every party, and all walks of life. When all is said and done, this is what makes me proud. As I traveled this district I was touched everyday by these people, and humbled by their overwhelming support. Running for Congress has been an honor for me, and I simply cannot thank you enough.
Be proud of your work. This is not the end. It is really the beginning of the next chapter in the sixth district and in our country.
Please know that my heart is filled with gratitude and appreciation for everything you did on my behalf.
Thank you Robin Bays
Thank you Robin Bays for running for Berrien County Clerk from all your supporters at South County Democratic Club. You ran an outstanding campaign -- a professional campaign that you can be proud of. However, voters do not weigh each candidate to see who is the fittest and who is the worst. Most voters come to the polls with a preconceived notion of who best represents their vision as represented by "political party." Even those who claim to be "independents" are seldom truly independent; that is, weighing the merits of each candidate. Statistics show they tend to support one ideological belief -- political party -- over another. In Berrien County our political opponents outnumber us. You are an intelligent, decent, caring, competent young lady who would have made a great county clerk. The problem is not you, or your credentials; it is that our political opponents outnumber us. Be proud: Over 28,000 voters had confidence in you and that is something special.
I wish you well Sharon in your new position.
Thank you to everyone who believed in me and stayed with me from beginning to end! I have made life long friendships, renewed old friendships and have learned a lot about myself in the process.
So very blessed to have had this experience.
Six ballot proposals heighten importance of November election
On Nov. 6, voters will be deciding the fate of six ballot proposals—five constitutional amendments and one referendum. The last time there was such a choice was 1982 when three constitutional amendments and three laws were being voted on.
The six new ballot proposals and MEA’s position are:
Referendum on Public Act 4
Protect Working Families - Protect Collective Bargaining
Citizens for Affordable Quality Home Care
The Governor and the Legislature have threatened to disband this SEIU. Vote YES
Michigan Energy, Michigan Jobs
2/3 Super-majority on Taxes
“The People Should Decide” to build new crossing with Canada
If the amount of money spent has anything to do with determining the importance of these ballot proposals, they should be at the top of the November ballot instead of at the end. So far, more than $20 million has gone for advertising and materials to make sure the proposals get attention. It will be up to the voters to decide if it’s money well-spent. MEA recommends that voters start from the bottom of the ballot to vote on these important initiatives, as well as the state supreme court race (which will be featured in the next issue of the MEA Voice).
REVIEW OF EACH PROPOSAL
PROPOSAL 1 - MEA recommends a NO vote.
PROPOSAL 2 – MEA recommends a YES vote.
PROPOSAL 3 - MEA recommends a YES vote.
PROPOSAL 4 - MEA recommends a YES vote.
PROPOSAL 5- MEA recommends a NO vote.
PROPOSAL 6 – MEA does not have a recommendation on
PROPOSAL 6 - Kate's recommendation -- NO
See the article below.
Canadians are offended by lies in anti-bridge ads, says consulate general
Roy Norton, Canada’s consulate general in Detroit, said his government is offended by the campaign to sway Michigan voters against the New International Trade Crossing (NITC) his nation is offering to build.
“Nothing in those ads should be believed. Nothing,” said Norton of the multi-million dollar advertising campaign being waged by the owners of the Ambassador Bridge.
Norton was in Grand Rapids on Monday, Oct. 8, to attend former Mexican President Vincente Fox’s keynote address to the World Affairs Council of West Michigan.
He also took time to campaign against Proposal 6, a constitutional amendment that would require a public vote on the bridge project after Gov. Rick Snyder went around the legislature and signed an agreement in which Canada will build the bridge.
The biggest lie in the anti-NITC ads is that Canada may not live up to its agreement to free Michigan of any financial obligation in building the bridge, Norton said.
“We Canadians find this offensive, to suggest we’re either lying or would renege on our contract,” said Norton. “The government of Canada does not renege and does not lie to the people of Michigan.”
Meanwhile, the owners of the Ambassador Bridge reneged on their commitments to upgrade their bridge exits until they were jailed by a federal judge, Norton said.
“They were carted off to jail,” said Norton, referring to a January contempt of court order against billionaire bridge owner Manuel "Matty" Moroun. “It’s a bit rich for them to imply that the Canadian government would renege on their commitment.”
Another lie is their contention that a second bridge is unnecessary, Norton said. “Their bridge is 83 years old, it carries 25 percent of all U.S.-Canada trade,” he said.
Companies that rely on the crossing for truck shipments would have to drive north to Port Huron-Sarnia or east to Niagara Falls, N.Y. if the Ambassador Bridge failed is forced to close, Norton said. “Redundancy is insurance,” he said.
Norton said the argument that the bridge should be privately held also is flawed. Of the 27 bridges that cross the U.S.-Canadian border, 25 are publicly owned. Besides the Ambassador Bridge, the only other private crossing is a logging bridge in Minnesota, he said.
NITC, which will be jointly owned by Michigan and Canada, will set the toll rates through a joint authority in which Michigan and Canada will have equal authority, Norton said.
After the Canadian government is repaid for its cost of building the bridge, Norton said Michigan will share in the toll proceeds.
Michigan legislators who refused to approve the agreement with the Canadian government are out of step with Indiana and Ohio, who approved resolutions in favor of the bridge crossing, Norton said.
Norton said he believes Michigan legislators feared they would face well-funded challengers if they went along with the NITC proposal.
This week, Republicans are gathering in Tampa for their convention, posing for the cameras, falling over each other to prove who's the most severe conservative of them all. There's plenty of angry, misleading rhetoric, but not much in the way of real action or results.
Primary Election 8/7/2012
From the MDP Web Site - Posted 6/9/2012 move 7/1/2012
Democratic Candidates for Michigan Supreme Court:
From the DSCC -- 537:
Republicans are trying to scheme their way into office again.
The Florida GOP’s intentionally complicated laws have made it nearly impossible to organize youth and minority registration activities. Many voter registration groups have been forced to pull out of Florida altogether.
Pete Hoekstra: Lily Ledbetter Fair Pay Act for women is a 'nuisance':
And the War on Women Continues
(From MLive.Com) Former U.S. Rep. Pete Hoekstra, who voted in 2009 against the Lily Ledbetter Fair Pay Act, again voiced his disdain for it Thursday, calling it a “nuisance.”
Hoekstra, in response to a question about the legislation during an event in Royal Oak, said there would be priorities ahead of repealing the law, but reminded people that he did not support it.
“That thing is a nuisance,” Hoekstra said. “It shouldn’t be the law.”
The remark has given Democrats an ability to spin the war on women back to Republicans, who were busy Thursday criticizing Hilary Rosen for her comment that Ann Romney had never worked a day in her life.
Hoekstra was among the group tweeting support for the wife of Mitt Romney, the likely GOP presidential nominee. Romney ran into trouble earlier this week when he didn’t immediately back the law and later issued a statement that he believes in pay equity.
Mark Brewer, chair of the Michigan Democratic party, led the charge against Hoekstra, who is the leading candidate to challenge Sen. Debbie Stabenow.
“It’s insulting to women and their families that Pete Hoekstra thinks a law that guarantees equal pay for equal work is a nuisance and should be repealed,” Brewer said. “When women are discriminated against, and paid less for the same job, it damages our economy and our community.
“Repealing this absolutely critical protection for women would be yet another blow against middle class families fighting to make ends meet.”
Hoekstra’s campaign did not immediately respond to an inquiry about his remark.
The 2009 vote on the Ledbetter Act passed the House 247-171 and went largely along party lines with three Republicans voting for it and five Democrats voting against it.
Stabenow, speaking Thursday before the Progressive Women’s Alliance in Grand Rapids, talked about the Republicans quest to jeopardize women’s health by fighting basic medical services.
She noted that she voted for the Ledbetter law in the address and that Democrats have sent Mitt Romney a copy of the legislation.
From the AFL-CIO:
Corporate Tax Dodgers Didn't Miss a Beat in 2011
What’s the “job creation” centerpiece of the Romney/Ryan/Republican budget?
Cutting those burdensome, job-killing corporate taxes. American firms, according to Romney and friends, are being bled dry by the oppressive U.S. corporate tax rate. That might be good rhetoric, but it’s nowhere close to the truth.
A new report shows that most of the 30 Fortune 500 companies that paid no federal income tax from 2008 through 2010 were able to keep up their tax dodge two-step in 2011. Those nimble firms include Verizon, G.E., Boeing, Wells Fargo, Tenet Health Care and more.
The report by Citizens for Tax Justice and the Institute on Taxation and Economic Policy shows that 26 maintained their negative federal tax rate—with tax breaks and loopholes, they actually made more money after taxes than before.
Don’t feel bad for the other four. Their effective tax rate was less than 4 percent. Overall, says the report:
It’s not just the dirty 30 ducking taxes. Overall the actual tax rate corporations pay, called the “effective” tax rate, is at 12.1 percent of profits—far, far less than what most of us pay.
But these corporations and other big companies have armies of tax lawyers who squeeze cash through the tiniest of loopholes. If they paid their fair share—along the lines of what working families pay—it would help raise the kind of revenue needed to support essential programs and services for working families, military service personnel, students, veterans, seniors and the poor. The same vital programs Romney, Ryan and the Republicans want to cut.
Join 100,000 activists of the 99% Spring on April 17, Tax Day, to demand that the 1% and corporations pay their fair share. Click here to find a Tax Day action near you. Click here to find a training session near you.
On April 19, we will launch our updated Executive PayWatch site that will look at the hundreds of billions of dollars of cash from profits and tax breaks corporations are stashing while they lay off workers, send jobs overseas and pay outrageous CEO salaries, bonuses and perks.
Meet Bridget Mary McCormack, Candidate for the Michigan Supreme Court
It's time for a change on the Michigan Supreme Court. The current GOP-controlled Court sides with polluters, insurance companies, drug companies, and other special interests over 80% of the time. Victims and citizens can't get a fair shake. It's time we elect justices who will be fair and balanced and will rule by the law rather than legislate from the bench.
Bridget Mary McCormack is one of the MDP's three endorsed candidates and has a long track record of standing up for fairness and justice. A University of Michigan Law Professor and mother of four, McCormack founded the Pediatric Advocacy Clinic which promotes the health and well-being of children and families. She has spent her career fighting as an advocate, representing clients who would otherwise have no access to the legal system.
McCormack is willing to take on any fight to ensure individuals have the same rights as the powerful special interests. She will bring integrity and fairness to our court.
Please watch the video below to find out more about Bridget Mary McCormack.
It's time to restore integrity and fairness to the bench. It's time the Court stops ruling for corporate special interests instead of protecting Michigan families and children. It's time to elect Bridget Mary McCormack for the Michigan Supreme Court.
Chair, Michigan Democratic Party
P.S. Please forward to at least five of your friends. Click here to learn more about our three Supreme Court candidates.
Robin Bays To Run for County Clerk Office
Robin Bays announced at Monday's general membership meeting (2/20/12) of South County Democratic Club that she will be a candidate for the County Clerk position for Berrien County. Robin, who works for the City of Niles, is challenging the chief Republican candidate Sharon Tyler who will not be running for re-election to the Michigan House, announcing earlier her intention to seek the post of county clerk. The salary and perks of this county office are said to be around $100,000 a year.
Robin his been a loyal and dedicated member of South County Democratic Club. She is known as capable, intelligent, and hard working -- often volunteering to help the Democratic cause as needed. She possesses the quality known as common sense and as such her political beliefs reflect that of a caring mother concerned for her family's future. She is no firebrand; nor will she be anybody's lackey. She will work for the people who elect her -- an honest and fair-minded administrator for Berrien County.
Dave Crumley to run for County Commission - District 11 (Buchanan):
Dave Crumley announced that he would be the Democratic candidate for the Berrien County Commission from District 11 (Buchanan). Dave is a lifelong resident of the Buchanan area and has work in the construction industry for many years. He is capable and intelligent and, once elected, will work for the people of the 11th District to make county government more responsive to the needs of the people.
Reports: Hoekstra Covering Up All Traces of Infamous Super Bowl Ad as He Plummets in Polls
Hoekstra Has Said He Stands by Ad but His Actions Say Otherwise–What’s the Truth?
LANSING – In the days following the launch of his now infamous Super Bowl Sunday ad, U.S. Senate candidate Pete Hoekstra said he stood by the spot. But now news reports reveal that Hoekstra is systematically eliminating all traces of it from the internet, deleting the ad–and even all comments and interviews related to it–from the campaign’s YouTube, Facebook and Homepages in recent days. All of Hoekstra’s own campaign Facebook posts about the ad are gone, as are even the positive Hoekstra-fan comments about the ad. Even Hoekstra’s interviews on the ad are being scrubbed from Hoekstra’s YouTube page and Hoekstra’s other sites. As of 9 a.m. this morning (Wednesday, February 22) Hoekstra’s campaign still had notices of removed videos on their campaign’s YouTube page–click here to still if they’ve continued to leave these up even as news outlets continue to write on their cover-up.
“Pete Hoekstra is scrubbing all traces of his Super Bowl ad from the internet, just like he is trying to scrub his own record of voting for the Wall Street bailout and his work at a DC lobbying firm,” said Mark Brewer, Chairman of the Michigan Democratic Party.
Hoekstra’s ad earned national scorn and was roundly criticized, including by top Republicans. Hoekstra tanked in polls released last week as well, as the actress in his ad apologized for participating in it and Hoekstra pulled the ad from the airwaves. For all of this, the Washington Post awarded Hoekstra with its “Worst Week in Washington” award last week. Today’s poll shows he has continued to fall even further since then. While he has said virtually nothing about the ad publicly in almost two weeks, Hoekstra has still never apologized or said anything other than that he stands by the ad.
Brewer asked, “After all the heat he’s taken, after all the criticism from even fellow Republicans–does Hoekstra really still stand by this deplorable ad?”
John Waltz's wife: 'There's no way for him to continue' race against Congressman Fred Upton
Janie Waltz said her husband John Waltz suffered a stroke and multiple seizures over the weekend.
"He's not doing great,"she said this afternoon on the phone. "There's no way for him to continue."
The Waltz campaign announced Tuesday that John Waltz was dropping out of the race because of a life-threatening illness. Waltz declared last summer that he would seek the Democratic nomination to run against U.S. Rep Fred Upton in November.
Janie Wlatz said John is back with her in Kentuckey, where she is living. "We appreciate his supporters standing behind him through his campaign," she said. "We're really sorry to see it end this way, not what we hoped to see."
From The Holland Sentinel - Posted 2/5/2012
Senate candidate, former congressman Pete Hoekstra pays $150,000 for Super Bowl campaign ads
Pete Hoekstra’s Senate campaign is pretty tight-lipped about a Super Bowl commercial, but Democrats have plenty to say.
“We’re not getting into the content too much,” said Paul Ciaramitaro, a Hoekstra campaign spokesman.
However, he would say the ad aims to “satirically highlight Debbie Stabenow’s record on spending and job creation — obviously a record we think is abysmal — and the real world consequences of that record”
Michigan Democratic Party Chairman Mark Brewer called the ad an attempt to fix Hoekstra’s public image.
“The way to fix your image is not to run a TV ad, but to do the right thing and resign,” Brewer said in a reference to Hoekstra’s work as a senior advisor for Washington law and lobbying firm Dickstein Shapiro. “We’ve been calling on him to resign from that job for some time because we think it creates a conflict of interest.”
Hoekstra’s camp welcomes the added attention from the Democratic outcry.
Sitting Sen. Debbie Stabenow, whom Hoekstra would face in November if he wins the Republican primary, used the ad buy as a fundraising opportunity.
“He is betting that if he spends enough money on flashy Super Bowl ads, he can gloss over his record and buy the election,” a Stabenow campaign email states. It encourages supporters, “When Hoekstra’s ads come on TV, tell your friends that you helped Debbie fight back by making a donation of $25, $50, $100 or whatever you can afford now!”
The “strategic buy” ad will air during the game in some Michigan markets; in others, it will air immediately prior at a total cost of $75,000, Ciaramitaro said. The ad will continue to run for two weeks after the Super Bowl. Those spots will run the campaign another $75,000 — totaling $150,000 for the ad to air. Donations to the Hoekstra campaign netted some supporters an early peek.
“Pete has a record as a penny pincher and even with the campaign that’s been the case,” Ciaramitaro said.
The Hoekstra campaign used the same man as behind Gov. Rick Snyder’s 2010 “One tough nerd” Super Bowl campaign spot. They’re hoping for the same results.