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THIS is how you know Michigan Republicans are absolutely freaking out over the #FlintWaterCrisis that they created

THIS is how you know Michigan Republicans are absolutely freaking out over the #FlintWaterCrisis that they created

After passing legislation to slash revenue sharing to already struggling urban areas including Flint and after passing an anti-democratic Emergency Manager Law – Public Act 4 – and after passing another anti-democratic Emergency Manager law – Public Act 436 – after voters rejected the first one (and making it democracy-proof with an unnecessary appropriation) and after these Republican-appointed overseers – the Emergency Managers of Flint – made decisions that lead to the poisoning of Flint’s drinking water and after our Republican-led administration altered water test data to avoid taking action when lead was found and after our Republican administration lied to the USEPA about treating the Flint River water and after our Republican administration violated the Clean Water Act and the Lead and Copper Rule and after our Republican administration ignored, maligned, and ridiculed the heroes who blew the whistle on the Republican-made catastrophe in Flint and after our Republican-run administration ignored and delayed and obfuscated until they no longer could and were forced to take action months after lead was found in Flint’s drinking water, Michigan Republicans now want you to believe that THEY are the ones taking care of business and that the federal government is somehow failing Michigan.…

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Michigan Republicans push laws to punish Detroit teachers who revealed shocking conditions in their schools

Michigan Republicans push laws to punish Detroit teachers who revealed shocking conditions in their schools

Four state Senators, Phil Pavlov, Joe Hune, David Robertson, and Goeff Hansen have had quite enough of uppity Detroit teachers who have staged “sick-outs” to draw attention to the deplorable – unconscionable, really – conditions in their schools. Images and stories of dead vermin, mushrooms growing out of the wall, disintegrating floors, walls, and ceilings, and clear evidence of black mold in the schools attended by Detroit children have shocked the state and drawn national attention to the disinvestment in DPS under a series of Emergency Managers over the past seven years.

Here’s are some of the photos:

Mushrooms in a classroom.…

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The worst part about the poisoning of Flint's drinking water is that nobody will go to prison for it

The worst part about the poisoning of Flint’s drinking water is that nobody will go to prison for it

No Snyder administration officials will be held accountable. And that’s exactly the problem.

At long last, after activists and elected officials and even bloggers like LOLGOP and I have been sounding the alarm about the poisoning of Flint residents with lead in their drinking water, the story has finally hit the national stage. In the past week, in addition to the Michigan media outlets who have been doing yeoman’s work exposing the role Snyder administration officials played in this human tragedy, national media groups have been reporting the story. The Rachel Maddow Show has run numerous segments including a recent interview with ACLU investigative journalist Curt Guyette.…

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Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder signs SB 571 into law and it’s WAY worse than you probably thought

Yesterday afternoon while most of us were driving home from work or home getting ready for dinner, Gov. Rick Snyder signed Senate Bill 571 into law. It’s now Public Act 269 of 2015.

This legislation started out innocuously enough as a 12-page campaign finance reform bill that involved how funds are collected and distributed by organizations that manage “separate segregated funds”, funds that are limited to making contributions to, and expenditures on behalf of, candidate committees, ballot question committees, political party committees, political committees, independent committees, etc.

The bill was introduced in late October. However, in the waning hours of the 2015 legislative session and right before they adjourned for the year, Republicans added over 40 pages of new stuff to the bill, didn’t hold a single hearing, didn’t solicit any input from the public at all, and told their caucus members that there was nothing to worry about and that they should feel totally comfortable voting for it without reading the extra 41 pages of stuff.…

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Twice rejected by voters, Gov. Snyder signs democracy-proof bill to make voting just that much harder

Twice rejected by voters, Gov. Snyder signs democracy-proof bill to make voting just that much harder

Twice in Michigan’s past Republicans have passed a law to take away the right to vote for all the candidates of a single political party with one mark on a ballot. Both times voters went to the polls and rejected their law. As the clock ticked down on the 2015 legislative session, Republicans passed the same damn law a third time. But this time they included a laughably inadequate $5 million appropriation to add more voting machines in every precinct in the entire state making the proposed law democracy-proof, safe from the pesky desires of Michigan voters.

Earlier this morning Gov.…

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Even Michigan Republicans feel duped by their leadership about campaign finance bill SB 571

Even Michigan Republicans feel duped by their leadership about campaign finance bill SB 571

Last month, I wrote about Senate Bill 571, a Republican campaign finance bill that will do a number of truly anti-democratic things.

Here’s a recap from that post:
[The] faux sincere desire for voters to be more informed was proven to be the lie that it is when [Republicans] passed Senate Bill 571. This bill bans using public dollars or resources to educate the public about ballot proposals in the 60 days before an election. The bill has drawn outrage and scorn from all directions. The Michigan League of Women Voters calls it a bill that “includes provisions that block access to unbiased, objective communication on ballot proposals to local residents”, saying that they are “very concerned about the limits that will be imposed on our mission to educate the public if this bill” becomes law.…

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Michigan Republicans not only want it hard for you to vote, they want you uninformed when you do (except by Super PAC ads)

Michigan Republicans not only want it hard for you to vote, they want you uninformed when you do (except by Super PAC ads)

As we wind down the year, those of us who pay attention to state politics are breathing a sigh of relief that the state legislature is no longer in session and working on ways to shape our state into the corporatocracy the Republicans so desperately want it to be. However, before they left Lansing for the year, they passed three pieces of legislation that go the extra mile toward making your vote as meaningless as possible.

First, as I have written about already, they passed legislation that eliminates your option of voting a straight ticket on the ballot. Brian Dickerson at The Detroit Free Press wrote a scathing op-ed this week detailing just how disgusting the process was that resulted in the Senate Bill 13.…

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#GOPocrisy ALERT: Mich GOP passes straight-ticket voting ban using single vote to stop ALL Dem amendments (UPDATED)

#GOPocrisy ALERT: Mich GOP passes straight-ticket voting ban using single vote to stop ALL Dem amendments (UPDATED)

After over ten hours of behind the scenes negotiations among their caucus members, all but two Senate Republicans voted last evening to ban straight-ticket voting on Michigan ballots. The bill had been tie-barred to far-less-than-perfect legislation to permit “no reason” absentee voting. However, the tie-bar was removed before passage by the Senate and then sent back to the House where, at in the dark of night, they passed the new, even MORE anti-democracy bill by a two vote margin and sent it on to Gov. Snyder for his signature. Unsurprisingly they kept in a $5 million appropriation in order to make the new law democracy-proof.…

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Ban on straight-ticket ballot option in Michigan may not pass Senate because it doesn't make voting difficult enough

Ban on straight-ticket ballot option in Michigan may not pass Senate because it doesn’t make voting difficult enough

This week the Republicans in the Michigan House of Representatives passed Senate Bill 13, a bill that would eliminate the option of straight-ticket voting on Michigan ballots. While they claim it’s to make us all “more responsible” voters, the obvious intent is to make it just that more difficult to vote in Michigan. In fact, Progress Michigan recently showed how it will take voters who would normally choose this method as much as as much as a minute and a half longer to vote. Multiplied by the 4,800 precincts in Michigan and you can see how this has to potential to increase lines and discourage voters.…

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House Comm passes bill to eliminate straight-ticket voting with a $1 million appropriation to make it democracy-proof

House Comm passes bill to eliminate straight-ticket voting with a $1 million appropriation to make it democracy-proof

Today a Republican-led House Elections Committee voted to eliminate the ability for people in Michigan to cast one vote for all of the candidates in a given political party with one vote. These “get big government out of my life” conservatives are only against rules and regulations when they aren’t benefiting them and they know that creating long waits, longer voting times, and havoc at polling places, in general, benefits them, particularly in urban areas where typically Democrats enjoy wide support.

How much longer does it take to vote on one of Michigan’s notoriously long ballots? Progress Michigan took a look and found that, on average, it takes over a minute and a half longer.…

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BOOM! Former Courser/Gamrat staffers file suit against Michigan House Republican leadership for firing them illegally

Oh, my…

Former staffers for ousted tea party philanderers Cindy Gamrat and Todd Courser have filed a federal lawsuit against the Republican leadership of the Michigan State House of Representatives claiming they were wrongfully terminated. The 36-page lawsuit, which you can read HERE, outlines repeated attempts by Ben Graham and Keith Allard to alert House Speaker Kevin Cotter and the Republican leaders of the House Business Office of Gamrat’s and Courser’s illegal use of government resources, illicit sexual affair, and their creation of a hostile work environment for their staffers.

According to the suit, Allard, Graham, and other new staffers were told repeatedly during their orientation that they should take any employment concerns to Chief of Staff Norm Saari, House Majority Counsel Brock Swartzle, or the House Business Office.…

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