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Thousands of workers across the USA to rally for fair pay on Tax Day

Tomorrow is Tax Day and the group is holding rallies across the country demanding a living wage for low-wage workers like those in the fast food industry. Here in Michigan, there will be a rally on the campus of the University of Michigan at noon to demand that U of M begin paying its employees and those who work in facilities that U of M leases to companies like Wendy’s $15/hr or better. They will be meeting at noon at the South Quad dining hall. The event will be no more than 45 minutes. For more information, visit the event Facebook page HERE.…

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New study: Washtenaw County is a case study of the realities of income inequality in a “knowledge economy”

Conventional wisdom in the 21st Century says that the salvation of our economic future will come from the so-called “knowledge economy“, an economy based largely on technology and that sees education and knowledge as both a business product and a productive asset. In knowledge economies, the need for high-skill workers is amped up and these workers are, presumably, paid more because their skill sets are more desirable.

Few communities embody the concept of a knowledge economy as well as Washtenaw County in Michigan. Home of the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor and Eastern Michigan University in Ypsilanti, Washtenaw County is also the home base for a wide array of technology-focused companies.…

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INTERVIEW (with photos) with one of Michigan’s rare married same-sex couples on their one-year anniversary

One year ago today, Anne and I spent an extraordinary day at the County Clerk’s offices in Washtenaw and Oakland counties, watching as some of the 300+ same-sex couples were legally married for the first time in our state’s history. You can revisit that day with us in the post (HERE) that we put up featuring many of Anne’s outstanding photographs.

We even got to see Judith Levy, the first openly-gay federal judge in the 6th Circuit Court perform the first ceremony of the day in Washtenaw County:

1st same-sex marriage in Washtenaw Cty being officiated by the 1st openly gay 6th Circuit federal judge Judith Levy

— Chris Savage (@Eclectablog) March 22, 2014

As a follow-up to that day, Anne did an interview with Connie Greer and Diane VanDorn, two women from our hometown of Dexter who Anne had shadowed the day they were married to document their experience.…

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Detroit Metro Times goes full tabloid with smear piece on Arbor Brewing Co. owners Matt & Rene Greff

The Detroit Metro Times has a long history of doing investigative journalism about issues that are often overlooked by other media outlets. They have developed a good reputation for their reporting because of it. However, with a recent piece published this week titled “Arbor Brewing Co. presents a case study in local business ethics and crowdfunding “, they have devolved into little more than a tabloid, willing to run a smear piece simply as clickbait.

The attack piece is based entirely on allegations made by a former employee of the Arbor Brewing Company Microbrewery (formerly “The Corner Brewery”) in Ypsilanti.…

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INTERVIEW: Veronique Liem for Washtenaw Circuit Court – “I’m running based on what I can do to help our community.”

There are two judicial races on the ballot this year in Washtenaw County. One is for Probate Court. You can read my interview with Tracy Van den Bergh who is running in that race HERE. The other is for the Circuit Court.

Veronique Liem is one of the people running for the Circuit Court seat. Her progressive values and concern for victims of domestic assault as well as children in family law cases have earned her my personal endorsement. As I wrote in my endorsement statement, “As a community organizer in Washtenaw County and someone who follows progressive issues closely, I am committed to supporting candidates who represent my views.…

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INTERVIEW: Tracy Van den Bergh for Probate Judge – “Too often the voice of the vulnerable isn’t heard in our courts”

The race for Probate Judge in Washtenaw County has been hard fought and gotten a fair amount of attention locally. What many people are unaware of is the intense amount of politics that has played into this race. Having spoken with numerous people who are knowledgeable about the Probate Court, I’ve come to understand that two of the conservative judges on the court have worked very hard to see that their pick for the position, Julia Owdziej, was awarded an appointment to the seat just last spring, giving her the advantage of being labeled the incumbent.

Judge Nancy Wheeler (nee Francis), who held the Probate Court judge position that is being voted on had been out on medical leave several times.…

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GUEST POST: Ann Arbor super activist Michael Rains explains why he is Getting Out the Vote and how YOU can, too!

I first encountered my dear friend Michael Rains on the streets of Ann Arbor. He had a cart he has dubbed “the Democracy Machine” and there was a crowd of people around him, waiting to sign petitions to recall Governor Snyder and to repeal Michigan’s anti-democratic Emergency Manager law. If there is a crowd of people in Ann Arbor – and often elsewhere in the state – Michael can often be found there with the Democracy Machine, distributing information and gathering petition signatures for causes he believes in.

Today, Michael is sharing with us his reasons for getting out the vote (GOTV) for the November Election and has information on how you can get involved, too.…

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EVENT: “Women in Politics” Meet-and-Greet featuring Lisa Brown, Debbie Dingell, and many others – Oct 7th in Ann Arbor

Next Tuesday, October 7th, the Ann Arbor Dems along with the Washtenaw Community College Political Science Club are hosting a “Women in Politics” meet-and-greet on the campus of Washtenaw Community College. Attending the event is an all-star line-up of exceptional Democratic women from around the state:

  • Lisa Brown, Candidate for Lieutenant Governor
  • Chairwoman Debbie Dingell, Candidate for United States Congress, 12th District
  • Shari Pollesch, Michigan State Senate, 22nd District
  • Rep. Gretchen Driskell, Michigan State House of Representatives, 52nd District
  • Veronique Liem, Candidate for Washtenaw County Circuit Judge
  • Judge Deborah A. Thomas, Democratic Party Nominee for Michigan Supreme Court Justice
  • Tracy Van den Bergh, Candidate for Washtenaw County Probate Judge

Here are the full details:

Women In Politics

Please Join

Hedieh Briggs ▪ Louis Green ▪ Mike Henry
The Ann Arbor Democratic Party ▪ Washtenaw Community College Political Science Club (Committee in Formation)
for a Meet & Greet Reception with special guests

Lisa Brown, Candidate for Lieutenant Governor
Judge Deborah A.

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EVENT: Ann Arbor fundraiser for Democratic Secretary of State candidate Godfrey Dillard this Tuesday – 9/23/14

This coming Tuesday, September 23, 2014, there will be a fundraiser for Democratic candidate for Secretary of State Godfrey Dillard at Mélange in Ann Arbor starting at 6:00 p.m. Dillard is trailing incumbent Republican among definite voters by only 4.4% in one poll, just outside the margin of error, despite having just become a candidate. In another poll, he’s in a statistical dead heat, and in a final poll, he’s leading her by 3.6 points.

Here are the details:

Honorable Rep. Jeff Irwin (State House Representative)
Honorable Monica Ross-Williams (Ypsilanti Township Park Commissioner)

John Carter * Michael Henry * Wilma Gold-Jones
Robyn McCoy * Christina Montague * Ronnie Peterson

Tuesday, September 23, 2014
6:00pm to 7:30pm

Host – $50.00
Guest – $25.00

Melange Bistro
312 S Main Street
Ann Arbor, MI 48104
(Corner of S.

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EVENT: Livestream of Citizens United debate between David Cobb & James Bopp in Ann Arbor – 9/8/14

Move to Amend’s David Cobb

Tomorrow night, the Ann Arbor-area group Reclaim Our American Democracy (ROAD) will livestream a public debate between Move to Amend‘s David Cobb and corporate attorney James Bopp over the Supreme Court’s Citizen United decision. The event takes place at the Pittsfield Township Hall (Pittsfield Township Administration Building, 6201 W. Michigan Ave., Ann Arbor) and starts at 7:00 p.m.

I have interviewed Cobb twice, HERE and HERE.

Here is a description of Monday’s event:

“Citizens Divided: Corporate Money, Speech, and Politics” – Public Debate featuring David Cobb & James Bopp
September 8, 2014

Indiana University in Bloomington will host a public debate between David Cobb of Move to Amend’s National Leadership Team and James Bopp, General Counsel for the James Madison Center for Free Speech.

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