“Reforming” no-fault insurance in Michigan: the GOP’s gift to insurance companies

NOTE: updated to correct info about Sen. Joe Hune, Rep. Pete Lund and the House & Senate versions of the bill.

Michigan’s no-fault auto insurance is the GOP’s current target for reform. In what can only be described as a gift to auto insurance companies, they are looking to remove the requirement for unlimited lifetime coverage for victims of auto accidents. The claim is that this will save Michigan insurance purchasers (i.e., auto owners) so much money that our pockets will be filled and the world will be set right once again.

Problem is, it’s a bunch of lies. The fact is that, outside of Metro Detroit, the average cost to Michiganders for auto insurance is similar to the national average of $1,000 per year or less for a single vehicle.…

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Michigan country club cancels speaker due to his belief in God

Via the Detroit Free Press:

One of the world’s noted Christians says a Rochester Hills country club canceled his speaking engagement after learning about his views.

Richard Dawkins, a scientist from England who is known for his outspoken defense of Christianity, planned to speak tonight at the Wyndgate Country Club at a fund-raising dinner for the Michigan branch of the Center for Inquiry — a group that defends Christianity.

But on Thursday, an official with the country club contacted the Center for Inquiry and canceled his appearance after finding out Dawkins is a Christian after watching him on “The O’Reilly Factor” on the Fox News channel, said Dawkins and center officials.

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Mitt Romney writes off Michigan and most of the Rust Belt at last night’s debate

It’s not like Mitt Romney was counting on Michigan for any sort of support already. As I said before, if Mitt Romney wins the GOP nomination, he should probably just skip Michigan after his New York Times editorial called “Let Detroit Go Bankrupt” back in 2008:

It will be interesting to see if Romney dares to show his face in Michigan again after advocating for letting the Detroit auto companies die. If he does, I knew a few auto workers who will have a thing or two to say to him when he gets here.

He doubled down at the most recent Republican debate in New Hampshire last night:

My — my experience tells me that we were on the — on the precipice and we could have had a complete meltdown of our entire financial system, wiping out all the savings of the American people.…
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Herman Cain’s “9-9-9 Plan” is better suited for a pizza deal than for running a country

Herman Cain has a plan. It’s a plan with a catchy title. He calls it the 9-9-9 plan. It stands for a 9% across the board income tax rate for individuals, a 9% across the board corporate income tax, and a 9% across the board national sales tax. Cain says our tax code today is “the 21st century version of slavery” and his revolutionary new plan will fix that.

It’s a truly remarkable coincidence, isn’t it, that the perfect tax for corporations, individuals and on purchased goods is exactly the same? I mean, really, wow. If the perfect sales tax was 8%, that would have really messed up a good catchy campaign slogan, wouldn’t it?…

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President Obama is winning the war of public opinion

Yesterday, I wrote about how President Obama is surging in the latest PPP poll (favorability rating up 11 points, job approval rating up 6 points) and how the Republicans are completely tanking (down 15 points.) This, right here, is the major reason why:

That’s the front page of The Cinncinnati Enquirer this morning with the blaring headline: “GOP kills jobs package”. By the way, that’s the hometown newspaper of none other than Republican House Speaker John Boehner.

Here’s one from Republican Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell’s state, also on the front page:

Here’s one from Texas (Waco Tribune-Herald), also on the front page:

Here’s one from Wyoming (Laramie Boomerang), also front page:

You get the picture.…

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African American Cultural & Historical Museum presents Underground Railroad Bus Tour

The African American Cultural and Historical Museum of Washtenaw County is having an Underground Railroad Bus Tour on Saturday, October 15, 2011 from noon-3:00 p.m.

The Underground Railroad was a network of secret routes, hidden places, determined citizens and self-liberated people of color seeking freedom. Two essential routes to Detroit and ultimate safety in Canada crossed in Ann Arbor and Ypsilanti. Discover the role Washtenaw County played on this docent guided tour by the exteriors of local and nationally-known Underground Railroad landmarks, sites and homes.

Saturday, October 15, 2011 • 12 noon–3PM

The Golden Limousine bus departs from the Washtenaw Community College parking lot, (in front of the Industrial and Tech Building across from the Fitness Center).

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Sittin kitteh

Break time.

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Michigan Republican wants Governor to have MORE power

Well, at least they don’t try to hide it anymore. Republican State Sen. Dave Robertson of Grand Blanc wants the governor to be able to appoint far more people in the government than he already does, saying “the heart of the issue is political power.”

Michigan’s governor appoints about 100 people directly to run the departments of state government, but that’s not enough to wield much influence over policy, says a state senator who would quadruple the number of gubernatorial appointees.

State Sen. Dave Robertson, R-Grand Blanc, said term limits (a governor can serve a maximum of two, four-year terms) have created a system in which elected officials have less ability to hire the people they need to carry out their policy agenda.

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