Education, Michigan Republicans, Rick Snyder — March 13, 2014 at 9:32 pm

POLL: Rick Snyder may want you to think he’s supporting education but most people don’t believe it


Republican Governor Rick Snyder is spending an enormous amount of effort trying to convince Michigan residents that he has increased school funding. In reality, it’s true. The state of Michigan is spending a bit more now than when Snyder took office. But that’s only because he includes temporary federal funding as part of the Stimulus spending legislation sent to states to cushion the blow of the Bush Recession as the starting point, funding no longer available. Overall, schools are funded at a lower rate than in the past.

Funny thing: Michiganders know it.

An new Inside Michigan Politics/Lambert, Edwards & Associates/Denno Research poll shows that over half of Michiganders believe that Governor Snyder has decreased spending on schools. In fact, nearly three times as many people believe this.

The poll asked the question, “In the three years that Governor Rick Snyder has been in office, do you think he overall has increased or decreased spending for K-12 schools?” 53.8% responded “decreased” versus only 18% who said “increased”. A significant 69% of respondents who said Snyder has decreased education spending were between the ages 35 and 64, the general age range of voters with children.

“The issue comes down to whether people believe money is getting into the classroom. And this poll indicates parents of school-aged children don’t believe Gov. Snyder’s narrative that schools are seeing more money,” said Susan J. Demas, editor and publisher of Inside Michigan Politics. “Republicans have clearly done their own polling on this issue and realize it’s a weakness in the election. That’s why they’re looking to up education spending in this year’s budget.”

One only needs to look at the intense controversy regarding expanding the Education Achievement Authority to see that education is a top priority in Michigan right now. Governor Snyder is desperately trying to improve his image on education and these poll results suggest that, at least so far, his approach is not working. Perhaps that’s because nearly all of us know that our local school district is hurting financially, despite claims by Governor Snyder that everything is just fine. Sometimes local realities trump political niceties.

These results make it clear that education is a winning issue for Democrats. They have legislation in place to counter the failures of the current approach which data shows is clearly not working. Governor Snyder has multiple school districts in financial emergencies. If education is at all important to Michigan voters, Snyder is in deep trouble. The question remaining is if his last minute interest in funding education will be enough to change such a lopsided public opinion deficit.

[Caricature by DonkeyHotey from photos by Anne C. Savage for Eclectablog]

  • Ilene Marsch

    “The visionary lies to himself, the liar only to others.”
    ― Friedrich Nietzsche

  • Looseafir

    Money does not equal better education.

    • tnts

      It does if your school has had to cut staff, cut programs, cut classes, cut supplies, cut, cut, cut….

      • Looseafir

        Wrong. Just flat out wrong. The more money we pour in does not equate to better students. This is a PROVEN FACT.

  • Patti

    He has not increased spending. He has cut spending. And he has done it to placate his base – Koch, Devos, and the Mackinac Center loons. They have another name too. They are the 1% and they want to damage the middle class and working poor in Michigan to benefit themselves. That’s what gutting public education is all about. Privatize is their answer. That puts big bucks into the pockets of the 1% who run these schools – for profit. Sndyer’s policies are extremely bad for this state and we will GOTV and send him packing. Mark Schauer will lead this state back to fiscal sanity and reality. He will get the middle class and working poor working again and making the decent money necessary to make this economy hum. The tea-bags don’t know how to do it or don’t want to do it and I for one am sick to death of their charades. Democrats Only 2014 and 2016.

    • ::applause::

    • Looseafir

      The new rebel cry of the left… Koch brothers. The men that is list 57 in donations while the top 14 donors are all DEMOCRATS. Can you say Hypocrisy????? Heck if it was not for Harry Reid and MCNBC you would not even know who the Koch brother were. I also bet you never see how much they give to charities.

      • Barbara Drake

        Tell us who the top 14 democratic donors are.

        • Looseafir

          There is a new thing on the web called GOOGLE… Check it out.

          • map

            So AT&T is a Democratic group? And the National Association of Realtors? Big time Dem group. Then, of course, the biggest Dem group of them all, Goldman Sachs! I went through every one of the lists and couldn’t find what the Hell you were talking about. But yeah, that GOOGLE is really great.

          • Looseafir

            Apparently you are to dense to figure out the Donkeys… Who is on the fence and the elephants. Do you see any Elephants in the top 16? Do you see the Koch are 59th?

          • map

            Now that I look at the chart, it says donations from 1989-2014. Now, since the Koch Brothers have only been politically active for the last few years, and since this chart does not include Americans for Prosperity or all of their donations to right-wing think tanks and other organizations, it seems that maybe you are trying to misled us or are too dense to read a chart.

          • Looseafir

            Coll here is 2014…

            8 of the top 10 are DEMOCRATS. Oh I hate republicans but at least I am not a hypocrite.

          • map

            And yet some more interesting information: The Koch Brothers spent more on the 2012 elections than the Top Ten unions combined. Is that on your chart?


          • map

            Through all of their groups the Koch Brothers spent $412 million on the 2012 campaign. That would put them at the top of your bogus list. Sorry about that.

          • map

            And then look at this list. The top two Super PACs, by a big margin, supported Republicans. Hmm . . .


          • map

            And when you look at non-disclosing groups, we find at #2 Americans for Prosperity, run by the Koch Brothers, right after another Republican supporting group, American Crossroads. In fact, the top seven non-disclosing groups supported conservatives. Who’d of thunk it, huh?


          • Laurie Tata

            And then crickets from the troll…..*chirp*
            Good job, map. :-)