Michigan Democrats — August 1, 2012 at 1:18 pm

UPDATED: FIVE fake Democrats Michiganders should watch out for in the primary next Tuesday


Dude, you ain’t no Democrat

UPDATE 1: I have updated this post to include more information about Cody Bailey. I hemmed and hawed over whether or not to include him in the “fake Dems” category. In the end, I did not. I have, however, included additional information about why he MAY be, why I think so, and why he’s a bad choice for Michigan.

UPDATE 2: Third and fourth and fifth fake Democrats have come to my attention – Susie Hughes, a tea partier from Muskegon, her husband John and Mike Eller, a John Bircher in Ypsilanti. See below.

UPDATE 3: I have officially moved Cody Bailey into the fake Dems category. See my new post about his candidacy HERE.

There are two FOUR FIVE people running for office who Democrats should watch out for when they vote in the primary next Tuesday. One of them, Bill Roberts, is a LarouchePAC candidate who wants to impeach President Obama. Another is Jim Fink, running for circuit court judge in Washtenaw county on the nonpartisan ballot but who has been attempting to cuddle up to Democrats for months now. Husband and wife Susie and John Hughes from Muskegon are numbers three and four and Mike Eller, a John Bircher from Ypsilanti is the fifth.

Before I get into this, I want to be clear that I did not set out to identify Conservadems or Blue Dog Democrats — so called “Democrats in Name Only (DINOs)” — for this piece. There are plenty of them in Michigan and I received information from a number of folks on people like:

  • Glenn Anderson in MI-13 who has some very sketchy, non-Democratic votes under his belt.

    UPDATE: I commend your attention to the comments where my friend Kevin Shopshire gives a very persuasive argument on behalf of Rep. Anderson. I have a lot of respect for Kevin so his comments carry a lot of weight, in my opinion.

  • Cody Bailey, an Anderson protégé who until this past year was very clearly a Romney Republican who posted countless anti-Democrat/pro-Republican comments on his Facebook page leading up to 2011. Bailey has endorsements from obviously conservative, pro-Business, anti-union groups like the Michigan Chamber of Commerce, Associated Builders and Contractors, the Michigan Retail Association, Michigan Restaurant Association, and others. He’s also got the DeVos-funded, pro-charter schools Great Lakes Education Project sending out mailers in support of him and attacking his opponent, David Knezek. Bailey’s own attacks on Knezek including suggesting that he’s not a military veteran (he is) have raised a LOT of eyebrows and have people questioning whether or not he’s really a Democrat, particularly since this is considered a fairly safe seat for the Dems. Frankly, Bailey nearly made the cut to be included in the list of “fake Dems”.

    I have officially moved Cody Bailey to the category of fake Democrat. See my new post about him HERE.

  • Liesa Liss who, as I wrote about last month, sides more with Republicans on women’s reproductive rights issues than she does with Democrats. Despite the fact that she is a nurse, the Michigan Nurses Association has endorsed her opponent, Jon Switalski (Switalski’s website is HERE.)
  • Kurt Haskell running for Congress in MI-07 who is convinced that the federal government was involved in the Underwear Bomber fiasco.

These people may not fit into the category of progressive Democrats but, with the possible exception of Cody Bailey, they are Democrats. They all have progressive opponents to choose from and I encourage people to investigate them fully before voting in the primary next Tuesday.

So, let’s take a look at two FOUR truly fake Democrats.

First, let’s take a look at Bill Roberts who is running in MI-11 for the seat being vacated by Thad McCotter. I don’t really need to say much about Roberts other than to show you this screenshot from his website:

That’s right, a Democrat running on a platform that includes impeaching President Obama. He has even carried around one of those hideous Obama-with-a-Hitler-moustache posters:

Roberts was asked about the appropriateness of comparing Obama to Hitler and working to obtain signatures on petitions with a photo of Obama with a Hitler-like mustache. “Yes, I’ve done that,” Roberts said about collecting the signatures.

“It’s a very honest assessment of the president’s personality,” Roberts said of the photos of Obama with the Hitler mustache. “Fascism starts somewhere, in the commitment to saying that there are certain lives that are unworthy of life and that it’s more important to have a policy of austerity and propping up the banking cartel.

Please, if you are a Democrat, steer clear of Bill Roberts. He is no Democrat and no friend to those of us who are. Instead, give your vote to Dr. Syed Taj who has the support of the Michigan Democratic Party.

The other person to watch out for is Jim Fink who is running for 22nd Circuit Court in Washtenaw County. I first learned about Fink at a meeting of the Western Washtenaw Dems. Although Fink himself wasn’t there, he sent along a relative to sing his praises. He has since showed up at the Ann Arbor Dems’ summer picnic, participated in the Washtenaw County Democrats’ candidates forum, and even tried to get the Washtenaw County Dems to put his information on their website.

That absurd idea was quickly shot down.

Why? Because Jim Fink is no Democrat and the WCDP will not use its resources to support a Republican.

At the candidates’ forum, an anonymous person placed a one-page fact sheet (pdf) about Jim Fink on the seats of attendees. The sheet describes Fink’s thousands of dollars of donations to Republicans, his anti-Choice position and his anti-gay stances, all of which go against the grain of true Democrats.

When he was asked about the sheet at the forum, he had this to say:

He began by joking that if he ever reaches a point when he needs someone to write his biography, he might hire whoever wrote the handout. There are things in it that Fink said he didn’t know or had forgotten about… Those who know him also know that he’s been associated with the Republican Party, Fink said. If you didn’t know that, you could read the handout, he joked.

Although he is running in a non-partisan election, it’s clear that he’s trying to leverage the resources of Democrats in Washtenaw County to advance his candidacy as a way to fool voters into thinking he is supported by the local party.

He’s not.

Jim Fink is clearly talented and has impressive endorsements, but he is no Democrat no matter how much he tries to fool people about this. Fortunately, Democrats in Washtenaw have three other very worthy choices: Erane Washington, Carol Kuhnke, and Doug McClure. I know all three of these people and they are all solid alternatives to not-Democrat Jim Fink.

Know of any truly fake Dems running for office in Michigan? Let’s hear about them in the comments.

UPDATE: Mary V. alerted me to two additional fake Democrats — Susie Hughes from Muskegon who is a tea partier running as a Democrat for County Commission. Her campaign is being run from her Facebook page which says absolutely NOTHING about her tea party interests. However, the Mackinac Center lists her and her husband as the heads of the Muskegon Patriots and after you read THIS and then THIS, it’s clear we have the right woman.

Her husband John is running for Muskegon Township trustee, also as a Democrat.

UPDATE 2: Mark Maynard of the awesome MarkMaynard.com points out another fake Dem, Mike Eller, a John Bircher running for Ypsilanti City Council. Full details at the link.