Michigan State Rep. Sam Singh named a top pro-growth progressive leader

This is the kind of leadership Michigan — and America — needs more of.

Let’s have a round of applause for State Representative Sam Singh (D-East Lansing), who was selected as one of twelve rising leaders from across the country to join the NewDEAL. This national network is committed to highlighting innovative ideas from state and local elected leaders who are pro-growth progressives.

Governor Martin O’Malley of Maryland and U.S. Senator Mark Begich of Alaska, Honorary Chairs of the NewDEAL, recognized Representative Singh’s efforts to launch a technology business incubator that connects entrepreneurs with training and local university researchers to create new jobs.

Governor O’Malley had this to say:

Senator Begich and I have joined the NewDEAL because we believe we need to look for fresh ideas not just from the top down in Washington, but also from the bottom up, where innovative leaders like Sam Singh are developing and testing their ideas out on the ground.

In communities throughout the country, rising state and local leaders such as Sam Singh are proving that you can be both pro-growth and progressive, said Senator Begich. “The NewDEAL is designed to foster these types of ideas and these types of leaders.”

Representative Singh expressed his gratitude for the honor.

I am proud to be recognized by the NewDEAL for my work to support entrepreneurism and economic development during my time at the City of East Lansing and with the New Economy Initiative for Southeast Michigan. I’m looking forward to working with the NewDEAL to share ideas and best practices that strengthen Michigan communities.

Singh is currently featured on the NewDEAL’s interactive website. He joins Representative Jim Townsend, Ferndale Mayor Dave Coulter, and Flint Mayor Dayne Walling as the fourth NewDEAL Leader from Michigan.

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  • Aaron

    I’m not sold on the pro-growth as being consistent with progressive. They’re not at odds, necessarily, but I don’t see anything about a tech incubator as being particularly progressive. Being a self-avowed pro-growth politician to me actually speaks to a failure to recognize the causes of many of our country’s problems (e.g. growth at all costs). Growth need not be bad, but when made a core value of any policy, I become nervous about the efficacy or progressive nature of said policy.

    • Amy Lynn Smith

      To be fair, Rep. Singh did not call himself a pro-growth progressive in this context. I don’t think pro-growth and progressive are mutually exclusive, but appreciate you reading and weighing in.

  • Aaron

    Thanks for the clarification. Indeed, the two are not mutually exclusive. However, I would think that for most progressives, growth is a thing to be pursued in order to scale up a program or product that effects systems change, rather than an end in its own right. “Pro-growth” just sounds very Republican (perhaps because it reminds me of the “anti-growth” derisive hurled at anyone who publicly supports regulation of business, expansion or maintenance of the social safety net, etc.) It seems there are better ways (that don’t use conservative-coined terms) to explain his ability/will to engage in the system as it exists while supporting progressive causes. But perhaps I’m being a nitpick.

    • Amy Lynn Smith

      Fair point about “pro-growth” sounding like a Republican term. It’s the wording The NewDEAL uses to describe themselves, so I respected that. But duly noted for my own writing moving forward. Bottom line, though: Rep. Singh wants to help create more opportunities and jobs, and that’s a very good thing.

  • judyms9

    I don’t think we should let conservatives hijack the English language. Progressives are for individual, economic, social, and political growth as part of realizing human potential. Economic growth will reduce the deficit that the rightwing keeps complaining about. It is the organic way to do it without dismantling safety net programs that the GOP wants gone, which is the other and less desirable or efficient way to reduce the deficit.

    • Amy Lynn Smith

      Well said, Judy! I’m sensitive to the fact that some terms, like “job creators” are like nails on a chalkboard to Dems. But overall, I agree that language is a nonpartisan playing field.

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