Mark Schauer, Michigan, Rick Snyder — May 7, 2013 at 3:22 pm

Politico: Polling shows Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder vulnerable if Mark Schauer runs


Why don’t we like thee, Governor? Let me count the ways…

Mark Schauer speaks to the Youth Caucus of the Michigan Democratic Party on April 27th, 2013. Photo by Anne C. Savage, special to Eclectablog.

Recent polling conducted for the Democratic Governors Association and shared with shows Mark Schauer with a lead over Rick Snyder:

In a document prepared for the DGA – and shared with POLITICO by a Democratic source – pollster Geoff Garin reveals that a recent DGA poll showed Snyder to be vulnerable to a challenge by Schauer. {…}

The poll shows Snyder tied with a generic Democrat, taking 40 percent to an unnamed Democratic opponent’s 38 percent. But Garin argues that the situation for Snyder is even more dire – especially if Schauer runs.

“The bad news for Snyder is that undecided voters are much more likely to split for the Democratic candidate: they voted for Obama over Romney by 24 points and they are 18 points more likely to identify with the Democratic Party than with the Republican Party,” Garin writes. “After hearing a brief positive description of Mark Schauer’s background, voters prefer Schauer over Rick Snyder by 54 percent to 38 percent. When given this alternative to the incumbent, independent voters favor Schauer by 16 points.”

Schauer’s lead holds up even after voters also hear “a series of criticisms of Schauer, a case statement in support of Rick Snyder’s reelection, and a series of criticisms about Rick Snyder.”

“In a fully informed trial heat, asked at the end of the survey after respondents heard both sides of the argument for both candidates, Schauer continues to lead Rick Snyder by 48 percent to 42 percent — an extremely encouraging result that bodes well for the strength of a potential Schauer candidacy,” Garin concludes. “Schauer benefits from an exceptionally strong showing among women voters, with whom he maintains a 20-point lead.”

Yeeouch. It’s no surprise, really. As Michiganders have gotten to know him, they’ve come to realize that Rick Snyder is not just a “businessman”, he’s a “business’s man”. In other words, a corporatist who sees every problem as an opportunity to fatten the bottom lines of corporations in our state. Despite his arguments to the contrary, he is, in fact, the consummate corporatist with a laundry list of accomplishments:

  • Signed multiple bills into law to harm unions including making the birthplace of organized labor a Right to Work for Less state.
  • Stripped massive amounts of funding from public schools to weaken them, prime to be taken over by charter schools.
  • Signed legislation into law to expand charter schools including computer-based “cyber schools”.
  • Gave away nearly $2 billion in the form of tax credits to corporations.
  • Raised taxes on over half of the taxpayers in Michigan.

And that’s just the obvious stuff. In Detroit News op-ed yesterday, Royal Oak Education Association president Sidney Kardon hit the nail on the head:

Michigan is no longer functioning as a democracy. It is a corporate oligarchy in which aides and friends of the governor create policy in secretive groups.

The Republican Legislature is always happy to advance the corporate agenda, to the detriment of our students, public schools, and communities.

How long will Michiganians tolerate the assault on community schools to turn a profit? Snyder and his cabal of aides do not care about our kids, our communities, or our democracy. They only care about their profits. Phrases like “education reform” and the assault on unions were only stepping stones to the real right wing objective: Ensuring that you and your kids are profitable to companies.

She’s totally right (except calling us “Michiganians” rather than “Michiganders”, of course), and Governor Snyder has worked hand-in-hand to give our ideologically extreme legislature nearly everything it has asked for.

Mark Schauer, on the other hand, has a long history of working to protect the poor, the middle class, and of standing up against the corporatist Republicans both in the state legislature and during his term as a U.S. Congressman. He was instrumental in helping our domestic automakers secure the federal assistance they needed to get back on their feet and he was a fierce advocate of the Affordable Care Act.

Schauer is a brilliant campaigner and a strong fundraiser, as well. With these poll results, which echo a similar poll several weeks ago, it’s clear that, even without widespread name recognition, he will be a powerful candidate. With him and Gary Peters at the top of the ticket, I predict a huge turnout by Democrats for the November midterm election.

Everywhere I go, Democrats are totally geeked about a Schauer candidacy. Though it seemed unlikely several months ago, he’s being lobbied hard from within the party and it’s looking increasingly likely. I expect him to make an announcement very soon.

In the meantime, check out the “Draft Mark Schauer for Michigan Governor” page on Facebook. With over 500 followers in just a few weeks, it’s rapidly becoming a page to watch.