granholm misleads the voters of michigan on the primary

The eyes of the world are upon Michigan. The “New York Times” blog mentioned Robert’s take on the primary that I posted here yesterday, and I just received a nice note from a reporter with the largest daily newspaper in Poland, “Dziennik.” She wanted to know my thoughts on tomorrow’s primary. The only thing I really had to add to what I’d already posted is that this experience has left me even less impressed by our Democratic leadership in this state. Specifically, I think I may have singled out Debbie Dingell and Jennifer Granholm.

As someone pointed out earlier in the comments section, our Governor, Jennifer Granholm, sent out an email to all of her constituents today, urging them to vote in tomorrow’s primary. Amazingly, however, she did not mention a single thing about the peculiarities of the Democratic ballot, such as the fact that neither John Edwards nor Barack Obama are on in. She also didn’t warn people that write-ins would not be counted. One wonders why the leading Democrat in our state would do such a thing. Unfortunately, the only possible explanation I can come up with is that she wants for people to go to the polls not knowing that the only candidates on the ballot are Hillary, Kucinich, and Gravel. As she’s recently come out urging people to vote for Hillary, it isn’t a surprise that she would try to help clear her way to victory in Michigan, but I find this particular move to be utterly loathsome. Not taking this opportunity to fill people in on the realities of the situation is inexcusable… Here’s her note, in its entirety.

Dear friends,

Tomorrow, Michigan will play a critical role in choosing the next President of the United States. The decision to move our primary to January 15th has put us in the national spotlight and, now, all eyes are on Michigan as we cast our votes for presidential nominees. With so much attention being given to our state, this is an opportunity for us to send a message to the nation that we are ready for a change in the White House and we’re going to deliver that message through our votes.

Click here to visit and find your polling location.

There is, perhaps, no other state who has more invested in this presidential election than Michigan. Our economy has been ravaged by the unfair trade policies of an administration that has turned a blind eye to our manufacturing sector. We have seen jobs shipped overseas as our president fails to enforce the trade pacts negotiated with our trading partners. And our manufacturers and small businesses have struggled to compete as the cost of health care rises and employers are left to foot the bill.

Tomorrow, we can take the first step to create real change in the White House. Click here for more information on getting your friends and family out to vote.

We’ve waited seven long years to see a change in the status quo in Washington. Tomorrow, it is finally our turn to raise up and cast our votes for a new direction for America. No matter what political party you belong to or what candidate you support, exercise your right as an American citizen to get out and vote. Michigan’s future depends on it.

Visit right now to find out where to vote.


Jennifer Granholm

PS – I will be on CNN tonight talking about Michigan’s important role in this presidential nominating process. Click here to find out more.

Sounds like they’ve got everything in order, doesn’t it? And, when you follow the link to find out where your polling place is, as someone else pointed out in the comments section, you’re greeted by two banners telling you why your Governor wants Hillary to be the next President. Maybe I’m making too much of this, but it really pisses me off that good, honest people are going to be getting this email, reading it, wanting to participate in the democratic process, and making their plans to vote tomorrow morning. When they get to their polling places, however, a lot of them are going to find that the candidates they support aren’t listed. They, of course, will end up writing their names in. And, as we all know, those ballots will be discarded. If they’d known all the facts, they could have at least voted “uncommitted,” but Granholm and others didn’t want for them to know that. They didn’t want people to know 1) that they had an alternative to Hillary, and 2) thanks to their ineptitude we were flushing $10 million for an election that doesn’t even really matter down the toilet. So, tomorrow, when you hear that Hillary took Michigan with over 50% of the votes, winning decisively, keep all of this in mind. It would not have happened on a level playing field.

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  1. Posted January 14, 2008 at 9:23 pm | Permalink

    I don’t think that a 50%+ Clinton vote can be called a “decisive win”. In fact, I’d say a mere 50% win would be a humiliating loss, considering the choices on the ballot.

    Nor do I think that Clinton needs any voter-misleading by Granholm to pull off a 50% win. I think the primary is going to be dominated by people who want to vote for Clinton; others will be more likely to stay home. Those who want to play the strategic game are probably going to be split between Dem-Uncommitted and Let’s-go-mess-up-the-Republicans. So if Hillary can only pull off 50%, it’ll be pretty pathetic.

    Personally, I continue to think poorly of Edwards and Obama for kowtowing to the party and pulling off the ballot. Your friend Robert can continue to tell me how it was strategically appropriate for them to do so, but that just feeds my perception of Edwards and Obama willingly playing the political game. Isn’t Obama supposed to be a fresh face for change? Isn’t Edwards supposed to be a crusading reformer? And yet they’re both being shown up by Kucinich, the only candidate willing to buck the party’s silly rules and actually show up in Michigan.

  2. Posted January 14, 2008 at 10:33 pm | Permalink

    The reform was the agreed upon calendar which added Nevada and South Carolina. Michigan participated in that reform, and then broke the rules. Edwards and Obama didn’t think it was fair for Michigan to jump in front of NV and SC so they took their names off the ballot.

    If you’re a parent, do you want to reward cheaters. It’s really that simple.

  3. Ol' E Cross
    Posted January 14, 2008 at 11:08 pm | Permalink

    Phil. I’m an Edwards supporter. Obama’s second. If anyone can help explain please do, but my lingering issue is that both Obama and Edwards left their names on the ballot in Florida, which broke the same rules as Michigan. This would seem to lend evidence to Murph’s point? If you pull from MI on idealogical grounds, why not FL?

    For the reasons stated above, Clinton still makes me ill. I watched Granholm on CNN tonight. She chastised Edwards and Obama for this debacle and used every opportunity to plug Clinton. Her appearance was more focused on plugging her candidate than the state.

    Hopefully, it’ll begin to dawn on Democrats that this is another presidential election that they very well can lose before all hope is lost.

    I’m actually starting to fantasize that Al Gore will sweep in save us.

  4. Andy C
    Posted January 14, 2008 at 11:08 pm | Permalink

    Kucinich tried to pull his name too but he was too late.

  5. Ol' E Cross
    Posted January 14, 2008 at 11:54 pm | Permalink

    If Kucinich really wanted to pull his name, why is he the only one campaigning here?

  6. Posted January 15, 2008 at 7:23 am | Permalink

    Andy C – I’ve been trying to forget that.

  7. Earl
    Posted January 15, 2008 at 10:49 am | Permalink


    The Florida legislature put all the dem names on the ballot, with no mechanism for removal. Michigan tried the same thing, and actually passed the law, but failed to give it immediate effect (2/3 vote necessary) and so while the law is on the books, it does not take effect until the end of March, 2008. Absurd, eh?

  8. Dick Cheney's Extending Taint
    Posted January 15, 2008 at 11:37 am | Permalink

    Better Idea:

  9. Posted January 15, 2008 at 12:02 pm | Permalink

    Ol’ E Cross,
    Different state laws.
    Candidates can’t pull their names off the ballot in Florida. It’s up to the SOS there.

    In Michigan, candidates can.

    Obama and Edwards would have pulled out of FL too if they had been able.

    Hope this answers.

  10. Ol' E Cross
    Posted January 15, 2008 at 12:40 pm | Permalink

    Phil. That answers it. Many thanks.

  11. Posted January 15, 2008 at 6:23 pm | Permalink

    Hey Mark, Just a clarification: Governor didn’t send that email to her constituents. She sent that email to the Granholm Leadership Fund mailing list. That list is largely made up of GLF supporters and other persons interested in GLF activity.

    It was not an official ‘Office of the Governor’ email.

  12. Mark
    Posted January 15, 2008 at 8:17 pm | Permalink

    I never gave Granholm money, or signed up for her Leadership Fund mailing list. I’m not pissed about being on the list. I just say that to illustrate the fact that it didn’t just go to her supporters. Maybe “constituents” was too broad, but I don’t think it just went to her core supporters either. The truth is probably somewhere in between.

  13. Mark
    Posted January 15, 2008 at 8:22 pm | Permalink

    And to say it wasn’t an “official” email and therefor didn’t have to be completely straightforward, is, with all due respect, bullshit. She’s the Governor of our state and she owes it to us to be honest in all of her dealings.

  14. Mark
    Posted January 15, 2008 at 8:27 pm | Permalink

    And don’t blame Kucinich for not pulling out fast enough. If you want to hate someone for that, hate Bush senior.

  15. egpenet
    Posted January 15, 2008 at 8:58 pm | Permalink

    Debbie and her husband John have really screwed us for a long time … but with their deaf (deft) union backing, they’bve gotten away with it. And now they’ve recruited Jennifer into the deception.

    Like Mr. Tait and others here in Ypsilanti … the cure is higher taxes. Jennifer won hwer case in Lansing with higher taxes, Mr. Tait did not here in Ypsilanti. The Dems simply want more money to spend.

  16. mark
    Posted January 15, 2008 at 9:13 pm | Permalink

    According to CNN, Hillary got 62% in Michigan and Undecided got 33%. I wish now that I’d worked harder to get out the Undecided vote. It would have been great if those percentages were flipped.

    Kucinich got 4%.

    And Romney beat McCain on the Republican side by 6%.

  17. Posted January 16, 2008 at 8:00 pm | Permalink

    And to say it wasn’t an “official” email and therefor didn’t have to be completely straightforward, is, with all due respect, bullshit. She’s the Governor of our state and she owes it to us to be honest in all of her dealings.

    Well you’re putting words in my mouth. The only thing I addressed was the fact that it was not an official government email.

    This looks to me like it is a GOTV piece, and not a voter education piece. There’s not even anything in there about photo IDs, which would help Hillary as much as any other Democratic candidate. All she did was encourage people to vote, regardless of party or candidate.

    So I don’t agree with your opinion that it’s a misleading email, and I wasn’t saying that it’s ok for her political communications to not be straightforward.

  18. Suzie
    Posted January 16, 2008 at 8:45 pm | Permalink

    I think Mark is saying it’s misleading because despite the GOTV front-end, all links took you to an enormous vote-for-Hillary splash page. And that perhaps it might have been more appropriate to have an email that simply said that she endorsed Hillary, and gave her reasons why, rather than couch it in a phony GOTV message. Or, contrariwise, to have a webpage that was less Hillary-tastic.

    No offense to Hillary. I know this wasn’t part of her campaign.

  19. Alvin Vertz
    Posted January 17, 2008 at 10:37 am | Permalink

    Granhom is one of the people that fucked this whole thing up. It doesn’t surprise me at all that she doesn’t want to draw people’s attention to it, even if voters would have found the information useful. Maintaining her image is more important than transparency. She wouldn’t have sent a letter at all if not for the fact that she wanted Hillary to have a good showing.

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