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    Who are the NERD fund donors Mr Snyder?

    Raise the curtain.

    Neither A RINO Nor A Weasel Be

    By Kevin Rex Heine, Section News
    Posted on Mon Aug 02, 2010 at 05:52:10 PM EST
    Tags: Michigan 2010 Gubernatorial Primary, Tom George, non-factor, Mike Bouchard, vote siphon, Rick Snyder, drag queen, Mike Cox, weasel, Pete Hoekstra, leadership (all tags)

    A critical choice will be made tomorrow by many voters in this once-great state; some voters, in fact, have already made their choice.  Regardless of which county, township, or municipality you live in, every voter in the State of Michigan will have the opportunity to vote in the Gubernatorial Primary Election.  This is a big deal.  Michigan has suffered for the past seven and a half years under executive leadership that is most charitably described as incompetent; whom we elect this time will either guide us out of the hole we're in, or dig us deeper into it.

    The general consensus, on these pages as well as statewide, is that a republican governor will serve Michigan better than a Democrat.  Given that the epic failures of Governor "protobama" Granholm have been on national display, this is not surprising.  However, there has been considerable disagreement as to precisely which republican candidate would be the best choice.  Personally, I took my time making up my mind, not settling on a choice until about two weeks ago.  For the record, the polling didn't drive my decisions . . . I actually did my own research.  What follows "below the fold" are strictly my personal opinions and conclusions based on that research.

    Tom George - was always a non-factor for me . . . apparently this was true statewide as well.  I didn't like the fact that he was openly advocating for approval of the mandatory con-con question on the 2010 general ballot (nor did almost all of the voters that I've spoken with so far, regardless of their political leanings).  The fact that he also seems to be firmly convinced that Michigan's budget woes can be solved exclusively by cutting social services seems unrealistic.

    Mike Bouchard - was an early choice for many people, me included.  I liked the read I picked up during our first few conversations.  He's solidly conservative, and our positions on key issues are either similar or identical.  Initially, Mike did well; and while some may think his choice of Terri Lynn Land as his running mate either premature or ill-considered, I don't believe that it was a negative factor.  Unfortunately, Sheriff Bouchard hasn't done well in the polling this year (never once polling above 14%), and the only thing he's well-positioned to do tomorrow is to siphon votes off of either Rick Snyder or Mike Cox . . . and hopefully both.

    Rick Snyder - is, according to my girlfriend, the "drag queen of the republican primary" (in that he's obviously a poser).  This guy should not be the one still standing when the voting dust clears on Tuesday night.  Much has been said on RightMichigan in exposing the liberal leaning of the Nerd King, from his questionable business practices to his clearly anti-family social positions.  I've spent much time canvassing Wyoming and Kentwood (which is where the 3rd Congressional District primary is expected to be settled), and residents that I've spoken to have pointed out something else.

    The Michigan 3.0 Plan on Snyder's campaign website is all about what the government is going to do for the people, the economy, and the state in general.  To me this smells like an Executive Office extension of the MEDC mission of choosing winners and losers in the private sector . . . something the government has no business doing.  As SCOTUS Chief Justice John Roberts said during his confirmation hearings, the government's job is to call balls and strikes, not to pitch or hit.  Winners and losers in the marketplace should be chosen by the free-market dynamics of entrepreneurial capitalism and nothing else; the only time the government should get involved is to appropriately punish businesses that resort to criminal tactics in their business dealings.

    And, for the record, in my opinion, the fact that former Governor William Milliken has endorsed Snyder is not a mark in the Nerd King's favor.

    Jason and I had a long chat about this over the past weekend; we both agree that Andy Dillon would be a better choice for governor than Rick Snyder (for that matter, so would Stacey Mathia).  Of the three front-runners, Rick is the one that neither of us want at the top of the ticket come Wednesday morning.  However, where we clearly disagree is on who should be in that top spot.

    Mike Cox - is, in my opinion, a fine Attorney General, and in that capacity has served Michigan well for the most part.  However, again in my opinion, this weasel is as bad a choice for governor as Rick Snyder.  I went into considerable detail on Friday about the smoke screen being laid by the Cox campaign and their allies in the form of distortion, factual inaccuracy, and outright lies in their advertising.  On more than one occasion, those advertisers have been on the receiving end of requests to pull their ads due to provable inconsistencies with the truth.

    Such an occasion occurred again late last week.  Michigan Business United (based in Macomb County) selectively used a video from a Pete Hoekstra Q & A session in the "Tough Enough To Lead Michigan" ad, quoting one line to make it look like he's in favor of a general tax increase.  In truth, the full footage (available here) makes it very clear that Pete is actually advocating for a complete overhaul of the state tax code, which will result in an overall tax decrease across the state.  The obvious misrepresentation was egregious enough that the Michigan Association of Home Builders, who hosted the session, was compelled to issue a press release requesting that Mike Cox have the ad pulled immediately.

    Additionally, the various county and local fairs around this state have policies in place that prohibit the distribution of campaign literature on the fairgrounds per se (though the parking lots and approaches are considered fair game).  On at least two separate occasions this weekend - in Traverse City and in Holland - Cox, after being informed by the fair officials that he could not distribute campaign literature on the fairgrounds, removed his campaign identification and went into the fairgrounds anyway.  In Holland, according to Jim Chiodo (chair of the Holland-Zeeland Patriots), when Cox was approached by sheriff's deputies and asked to cease and desist, he replied that he was acting under the auspices of his office as Attorney General and had the authority to do exactly as he was doing.

    Now mind you, there's nothing against a candidate paying the entry fee and walking around the fair, eating the "food" available there, and just talking with people; other candidates did so.  The no-no was campaigning on the fairgrounds, specifically distributing campaign literature.  I don't know what other such incidents may have occurred on the campaign trail, but I'll bet my hat that these weren't the only two.

    Finally, a cursory review of the various major newspapers around Michigan provides a paper trail of systematic abuses by Mike Cox of his office, apparently for the purpose of scoring political points, as far back as February 27, 2009.

    Let me make sure that two points are understood very clearly:

    • Until any actual proof surfaces, the Manoogian Mansion "urban legend" falls into the category of "innocent until proven guilty."  Even though it's going to be a major distraction should Cox win the primary, he should not be disqualified based on a case that hasn't yet been fully aired in court.

    • How a candidate runs his campaign is generally an indication of how he is going to govern.  (Our current POTUS is a case in point.)  Mike Cox has run his campaign in a manner more befitting a snake-in-the-grass - in my opinion.  While I have no problem with someone who's going to be tough while in office, abusing the powers of his current office while campaigning for a higher one is not a mark in his favor.

    An editorial run in the Oakland Press on Thursday, July 29th, does a very thorough job of making the case as to why Mike Cox is not the best republican choice in this primary.  It's a case that I happen to fully agree with.

    Pete Hoekstra - on the other hand, is perfectly qualified to be the Republican on the top of the ticket in this year's election.  And, unless something changes in the next 14 hours, Pete will be the one getting my vote.

    Mike Cox and his supporters can cherry-pick Hoekstra's record all they want to in order to support any allegation that they choose to level, but the fact of the matter is that Pete has the equivalent of a "Straight F" rating from every significant liberal-progressive organization in the state and the country . . . for good reason.  Likewise, Pete has very solid standing from every significant conservative organization in both the country and the state.  (The full list of endorsements can be viewed here; pay attention to the scrolling list on the right side of the page.)

    Granted, Pete didn't get the endorsement of Michigan Right-To-Life.  But, as Jason noted in his article last Tuesday, that's almost a technicality.  National Right-To-Life typically doesn't endorse in state races, but let's keep in mind that Pete has a "100% Lifetime Rating" from NRTL; I'm pretty sure that counts Pete as a pro-life candidate.  Likewise, while others may tout the fact that Mike Cox has the endorsement of three pro-gun organizations, let's also keep in mind that Pete Hoekstra has a "Straight A Lifetime" rating from the National Rifle Association.  (I'm pretty sure that even Harry Reid doesn't have that.)

    Pete Hoekstra has business executive experience and legislative experience, neither of which are possessed by either Jennifer Granholm or Mike Cox.  In fact, the only other republican gubernatorial candidate who has the necessary mix of both executive experience and legislative experience is Mike Bouchard.  And Mike Cox is hardly the only credible conservative in this primary race.  Cherry-pick all you want; the truth is that Pete is pro-life, pro-gun owner, pro-taxpayer, pro-state sovereignty, pro-business, and even pro-family . . . period.  I don't know if Mike Cox has taken a position on Right-To-Work yet, or if he will.  What I do know is that Pete Hoekstra has.  He's on the record in the Detroit Free Press as being supportive of making Michigan a Right-to-Work state, and believes that will go a long way toward making Michigan more business-attractive.

    All the polling data indicates that the Gubernatorial Primary on the republican side will probably be decided in the 2nd, 3rd, and 6th congressional districts.  Southeast Michigan (everything between the I-69 corridor and Lake Erie) will likely be a four-way split, the only question being as to how.  Pete doesn't necessarily have to win here; he just has to put in a credible showing, and as long as neither Snyder nor Cox dominates this area (which a credible showing by Bouchard should ensure), that'll be all that's necessary.

    Granted, endorsements aren't votes, yard signs aren't voters, and polls aren't elections.  But mark my words; unless either Snyder or Cox runs away with Southeast Michigan, Pete Hoekstra will be the GOP nominee for governor.

    < Who I Voted For | Victory balloons. >

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    IMO you're doing AG Cox a favor with this article. (none / 0) (#1)
    by maidintheus on Mon Aug 02, 2010 at 07:43:05 PM EST
    Having only decided "about two weeks ago" I'm amazed that you're not just strongly for Pete. Being so strongly against Mike seems odd for a choice that was so difficult to make that it took you until just recently. If I were you, I don't think I'd endorse Cox for AG either. If Cox is such a "weasel" and "just as bad" as Snyder...I don't think I'd want him to walk my dog. He could represent in court, that's about it.

    As it is, this last minute attack is a serious turn off to me. Perhaps there's a democrat operative that's infiltrated with some info, I don't know. It just seems they're really afraid of Cox and have been for some time, especially in that dem stronghold of southeast MI.

    Oops, didn't vote in your poll yet either. (none / 0) (#2)
    by maidintheus on Mon Aug 02, 2010 at 07:48:54 PM EST
    There's only two votes right now..one must be you. Wonder who the other one is :O

    I think I'll hold off for a bit longer :/

    I'll be back ~

    Statewide polling . . . (none / 0) (#13)
    by Kevin Rex Heine on Tue Aug 03, 2010 at 02:48:36 PM EST
    . . . as of last Friday (according to the RCP Poll Average, which is a fairly reliable trend indicator):

    80% of the people who will probably vote in today's Republican primary have pretty much made up their minds.  About 25% break for Hoekstra, 22% each for Cox and Snyder, and 11% for Bouchard.  (The margin of error was +/- 3%.)  That leaves about 20% undecided as of four days ago; I suspect that may have tightened over the weekend.

    Pete Hoekstra has, by all accounts, an effective stranglehold on the West Michigan portion of the primary (think 2nd, 3rd, and 6th congressional districts).  And while Snyder may have an effective ground game in Northern, Central, and Upper Michigan, that hasn't canceled out the ground games of Hoekstra and Cox (or Bouchard, for that matter).  Southeast Michigan (the area between the I-69 corridor and Lake Erie) will decide the gubernatorial primary.

    Cox, Snyder, and Bouchard all have a strong home-field presence in Southeast Michigan; that shouldn't surprise anyone.  This is why Hoekstra has invested significant campaign resources into this area of the state.  And it also should be fairly obvious that Southeast Michigan is where the gubernatorial primary will likely be decided.

    Mark my words, if either Cox, Snyder, or Bouchard dominate Southeast Michigan today, then it's all over.  However, as long as either Bouchard or Hoekstra (and ideally both) put in a credible showing here, then neither Cox nor Snyder will dominate.  If that scenario holds, and Pete doesn't choke in his own backyard, then he should win the nomination.  Go ahead, write that down.

    As a sidebar, let me point out that as of four days ago in the Democrat primary, Dillon has only a 0.5% lead on Bernero . . . with 49% of the likely voters undecided.  Now maybe I'm inferring incorrectly, but I think that we needn't worry overmuch about a jackass crossover into our primary.

    With respect to . . . (none / 0) (#14)
    by Kevin Rex Heine on Tue Aug 03, 2010 at 03:56:45 PM EST
    . . . my negativity regarding Mike Cox let me point something out:  Jason, if you had a paper trail on a candidate for office who was abusing the authority of his current office and/or deliberately running misleading smear ads against his opponent, then you'd call him out . . . no question about it.  Not only that, but you'd also make a point of describing what those tactics remind you of, whatever that may be.  (You've done it before.)

    So why am I being criticized for wrapping two essays around the well-documented falsehoods and misbehavior of a candidate for office?  (I assume you have a credible answer for that.)  Nevermind that the candidate in question is our sitting Attorney General, why hasn't he been called out on these pages?

    Civility to one's opponent is normally limited to the extent to which that civility is earned.  I'll grant that common decency dictates that we don't go foul in our label-hanging, even with socialist-democrats, but we are label-hangers here.  Two adages apply, one involves pigs and the other ducks; the point being that all the window dressing in the world doesn't change the window itself.

    Rick Snyder's been called plenty of names here, every last one of them well and properly earned; and it's a safe inference that 58% of the likely voters today would agree with those labels.  However, I find it odd that when I use labels that a not-identical 58% of likely voters would agree apply to Mike Cox, the kvetching starts almost immediately.  And, by the way, I'm keeping those labels clean; others are not necessarily so inclined.

    Unlike the trolls on this site, I have no problem laying out my opinion, the reasons for it, and the research that backs it up.  I don't go by a screenname, being quite comfortable using the one my parents gave me.  You and I disagree on this issue, and that's fine; realistically that would make a grand total of twice (total) where we've come down on different sides of a controversy.

    Primaries, like the rest of the electoral process, are adversarial for a reason.  If you want to take the field for MSU against U-M, then you first have to convince the coaching staff that you're worthy or wearing the green-and-white.  That means competing against others vying to wear the same uniform, and neither of you are looking to not make the cut.  Mike, Mike, Tom, Pete, and Rick are all looking to quarterback the Republican team to victory this year; but it's up to us, the voters, to decide who'll make the cut and who won't.

    I'm not sliming a fellow team-member; I'm pointing out valid weaknesses that I think disqualifies him from the position that he seeks.  You disagree, and I get that.

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    Who are you voting for (or whom have you voted for) in the GOP primary?
    Mike Bouchard
    Mike Cox
    Tom George
    Pete Hoekstra
    Rick Snyder

    Votes: 25
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