John Engler

Rick Snyder: “Look at Me!!! And, Oh, BTW, Mitt Was Born in MI”

I was pretty gleeful when Romney’s folks hinted yesterday that Rick Snyder was going to endorse today. While Snyder’s approval levels are improving from abysmal levels, he’s still unpopular. Plus, he’s a rich man from liberal Ann Arbor; Snyder’s own biography will emphasize precisely the things conservatives distrust in the rich Governor from liberal MA. Most of all, it raises the likelihood we’ll have a replay of 2000, when McCain won the primary here largely because people saw it as a way to damage Governor John Engler, who had aggressively campaigned for George W. Bush.

Boy, the party must have pushed Snyder hard to endorse here, because there’s little upside to it for him.

I’m even more amused now that I’ve read what Snyder said in his endorsement.

The whole endorsement is just over 600 words long. Of that, the first 62 words blather about Snyder, not Mitt. After a transition finally bringing him around to Mitt, Snyder spends the first 130 words of his description of Mitt to explain that Mitt was born here.

Let’s start with one important fact. Our country has never elected a president born and raised in Michigan. Mitt Romney was born in Detroit. His father served with distinction as governor. Before that, he was president of American Motors. Mitt grew up with the prospects of the auto industry and of Michigan discussed around the dinner table.

He has deep ties to our state. Mitt understands the challenges confronting Michigan as few Americans do.

Snyder spends a paragraph transitioning back to MI again (effectively saying, “Mitt’s a businessman like me”–which brings me back to my earlier point about how Snyder will emphasize the reasons the GOP base is suspicious of Mitt). Here’s where it gets interesting: Snyder, as he often does, claims credit for things he had little to do with (notably, MI’s turnaround), and then says Obama–who should get some credit for it–is screwing up nationally.

Michigan has laid out an impressive game plan for success. Across both peninsulas, Michiganians are working together with relentless positive action to move our state forward. We’ve made the tough decisions and bold reforms that are rejuvenating our state, such as restoring Michigan’s fiscal integrity.

By eliminating a nagging $1.5 billion budget deficit last year, we’re now in the position of recommending strategic, long-term investments in priority areas such as education, economic development and infrastructure. Simply put, we’re getting it right and we’re getting it done.

In contrast to Michigan’s blueprint, Washington is still at the drawing board. Deficit spending continues to run rampant. For the first time since World War II, the nation’s total debt burden exceeds the size of our entire economy. With Washington running trillion-dollar annual deficits, our nation’s recovery has been the slowest since the 1930s.

Washington is not on a sustainable course. Mitt Romney will change the direction.

Another quarter of Snyder’s “endorsement” claims credit for himself and promises to put the plans that had been working before he cut them–education and business development–back into place.

Only then, almost two-thirds of the way into his “endorsement,” does Snyder get around to telling Michiganders (actually, he calls us “Michiganians,” which is a bit of a departure for him) why they should vote for Romney–aside from the fact that he was born here and therefore MI might claim credit for him if he were to win. Vote for Romney, Snyder gets around to exhorting after he spends large chunks of his op-ed begging readers first to support him, because Romney will cut taxes and address the deficit and not force all states to adopt RomneyC– I mean, ObamaCare.

I hope all Michiganians will join me in supporting the candidacy of this favorite son of our great state.

It doesn’t exactly read like a full-throated endorsement, even while Snyder’s pitching that Romney will do for the US what Snyder claims credit for doing for MI. More like a squeal of “don’t hurt me!!!!” while reminding us what we already know, that Mitt was born here.

Vote for Mitt Romney, Rick Snyder says, because his accident of birth is one of the best things I can think to say about him.

White House Brags about Exporting our Pyramid Schemes to Korea

The list of statements of support for the Korea Trade Agreement the White House sent out last night tells you a lot about what you need to know about the trade agreement. Among others on the list are Tom Donohue, whose laundering of foreign money into election coffers had a significant role in the shellacking Democrats took in November. Donohue thinks this deal is great:

This agreement will create thousands of new jobs, advance our national goal of doubling exports in five years, and demonstrate that America is once again ready to lead on trade. The administration has done its part. Now it’s time for the new Congress to make passage of KORUS a top priority in January. We will do everything in our power to round up the votes.

Then there’s John Engler, who for a while as head of the National Association of Manufacturers instituted a policy of refusing to meet with Democrats.

Then there’s the CEOs of credit card nation, Vikram Pandit and Jamie Dimon.

But to me, the most telling endorser of this agreement is Dick DeVos, the CEO of Amway and perennially one of the biggest single funders of the Republican Party. DeVos is thrilled because this will help Amway meet their growth targets.

Like most companies, we support a more competitive playing field. This new trade agreement allows Amway to continue meeting aggressive growth targets, and gives a much needed boost for all export business in Michigan.

So we’re going to push through this trade agreement so Dick DeVos can expand his pyramid scheme, get richer, and funnel that money into the Republican Party.

But then, I guess that’s what Pandit and Dimon have in mind, too.

Levin: Send Those Terrorists to My Backyard

Carl Levin (Senator Levin–congrats for casting your 11,000th vote yesterday!) has come up with a sound suggestion to help close Gitmo: send them to MI.

Most lawmakers view the prospect of moving prisoners from Guantánamo Bay, Cuba, to their districts as a negative proposition. But at least one Democratic senator is open to the idea as a potential economic boost to his struggling state.

Carl Levin , chairman of the Armed Services Committee, said that construction and staffing at a new maximum-security prison in Michigan could help his cash-starved state.

“If the governor and the local officials are open to it, that’s something that should be considered,” said Levin, making the point that each state should make its own determination.

Former Michigan Gov. John Engler, a Republican, suggested this month that creating a “Guantánamo North” in the Upper Peninsula could net the state upward of $1 billion per year, according to reports.

While I’m not a fan of turning prisons into profit centers, I’m with these men. If you need to, build a maximum security prison in MI, in the U-P if you want. We need the jobs, and if it’d help to close Gitmo, I’m all for it.

Emptywheel Twitterverse
bmaz @brahmresnik @LarrySabato It always has been, despite flaky polls.
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bmaz @maassive I do not think the deadline is the entire law. You also have to consider breadth and enforceability.
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bmaz .@GregMitch In a single series, Bumgarner doesn't even top Bob Gibson in 1967. May not beat Gibson overall either.
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JimWhiteGNV RT @SIGARHQ: Deeply troubled that ISAF classified summary of report that assesses Afghan security forces capabilities http://t.co/a2blhSrdVz
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emptywheel Can someone explain why Mike Allen thinks McCain would get SASC, when Inhofe is Ranking? http://t.co/NKUm1X5zMB
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bmaz @armandodkos @emptywheel And, if other things equal, I don't relish Cornyn/Cruz over McConnell necessarily
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bmaz @armandodkos @emptywheel I'd be happy for McConnell to lose (think odds slim of that tho); just think such a loss doesn't change much.
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emptywheel @armandodkos Not true that it hurts on nothing else. Inhofe, Burr, in particular, concern me. @bmaz @sahilkapur
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emptywheel Congratulations, "public," You're now just like China in DOD's eyes. http://t.co/t9Hjd221sQ Hackers too, but we already knew that.
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bmaz @emptywheel @armandodkos @sahilkapur ...get deals cut if he wants them, or people that will never deal?
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bmaz @emptywheel @armandodkos @sahilkapur Would you rather have a Majority Leader that is at least capable of making deals+has discipline to...
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bmaz @nickmartin She should be. Ebola is scary, but there is simply no factual basis as to her case. America needs to stiffen its spine a bit.
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