Rene Greff on her support of Rick Snyder for Governor

Over the past several months, I’ve been approached by a number of people, and asked about the political leanings of Matt and Rene Greff, the owners of Ypsilanti’s Corner Brewery. They, as you may know, were very vocal in their support of Rick Snyder for Governor, and, now that Rick is in office, and people are beginning to feel the effects of his policy decisions, questions are being asked. Earlier today, a comment was left on this site by someone named Bob. He asked whether or not I was comfortable having the Shadow Art Fair in a venue know for supporting Snyder. You can read the entire exchange in the last Shadow Art Fair thread, but here’s Rene Greff’s response. My response to Bob can be found below.

I would like to think that Matt and I and our businesses have proven ourselves enough over the years that people wouldn’t throw us under the bus for one questionable decision. In all of our years of politics we have given money to exactly one republican and at the same time have given tens of thousands of dollars to democrats both inside and outside of our own districts.

We hosted election night events for Rebekah Warren, Jeff Irwin, and Paul Schreiber because we endorsed, gave money, wrote letters, canvassed, and hosted events for them – just like we did for Mark Schauer, John Dingell and a host of other democrats. I wonder if Bob committed that much time, energy and money to getting democrats elected.

Over the years we have received a lot of hate mail from angry right-wing customers, had our busineness picketed by the right to life, had our home picketed by anti-tax nut-jobs, and had threatening letters sent to our businesses and slipped inside of the door at our house for our very vocal public support for everything from immigrant workers’ rights, Planned Parenthood, GLBT rights, Michigan Peaceworks, and for hosting partisan democratic events.

This last election cycle honestly scared the crap out of us. We have friends who worked in Mike Cox’s office and had enough inside knowledge of Bouchard and of course Hoekstra to know that if any of them were to win the governor’s seat, it would mean a complete dismantling of our state’s public safety net and a big step backward for gay rights.

We also knew that, once again, as is our way, the dems put up a completely lame candidate that couldn’t possibly win in a mid-term election where everyone knew there would be a republican sweep. We knew Rick personally because he is the uncle of a good (dem) friend of ours and he had helped us re-write our operating agreement a few years back when the brewpub was struggling to survive.

So when he contacted us to tell us he was considering running, we did our due diligence. We met with Rick and asked a lot of questions and in the end thought that helping him win the Republican primary was our best chance of avoiding disaster in the general. We didn’t even vote in the republican primary because we had too many friends running in the democratic primary. And of course, we didn’t sneak around and try to pretend that we weren’t supporting Rick. We were completely public about our choice and our reasons.

Are we thrilled with how things have turned out? No. But we made our best judgment with the information we had, and I still believe that any of the other Republicans would have been MUCH worse and trust me – a republican was going to win that election.

And I have to say I think it’s pretty shitty to compare us to Walmart because of one questionable decision after 21 years of living in this community and not only supporting, but putting ourselves out there and fighting for democrats and progressive causes.

Since Corner opened in 2006, we have contributed to hundreds of local non-profits and hosted fundraisers for democrats running for everything from the local school board to the US Senate. We currently employ 25 people – most of whom are within walking distance and since opening, have partnered with local non-profits to provide employment opportunities and training to people recovering from addiction or struggling with mental health issues.

We pay a living wage, promote from within, and strive to provide a positive work environment for our staff. We put a lot of time and effort in finding and purchasing local ingredients, goods, and services. And we are getting ready to undertake a green energy renovation with geo-thermal, solar-thermal, and photo-voltaic. We donate our space, our beer, our food, and our time to support organizations and non-profits that improve the quality of life in our community (like the Shadow Art Fair).

As one of our favorite staff-members liked to say “we work our asses off motherf@!#er” and I think your damnation of us is unfair. Fortunately for us, most of the people in this community know us well enough not to have judged us too harshly and continue to support us both personally and professionally (even if they do still give us a lot of grief).

For what it’s worth, I believe them. With the exception of this one race, they’ve got a great track record as far as progressive politics goes. I first became aware of Matt and Rene during the Dean campaign, and they worked their asses off for that man. I know that their decision to support Snyder doesn’t sit right with some people, and I get that, but I think that our energy is best spent elsewhere, like attacking the worst parts of the Snyder agenda, and cultivating our own Democratic leaders close to home. Attacking Matt and Rene, in my opinion, will only cause them to retreat from politics completely, at a time when we need their passion and energy more than ever. Instead of holding it against them that they supported someone that they had been led to believe was a moderate Republican, we should be encouraging them to redouble their efforts in Michigan politics, in hopes of putting up a better slate of Democratic candidates next time. They’re too valuable as allies in my opinion, to cast aside just because of one questionable endorsement. And, more importantly, they make damned good beer.

If you want to boycott a beer, boycott Corrs.

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61 Comments

  1. Bob
    Posted May 4, 2011 at 11:36 pm | Permalink

    I fully intended to shut up about it as I said far more than I intended to. But since you chose to address me directly, I guess I will continue. I think if anyone bothers to carefully read what I said, they would not view it as an attack on the Greff’s. My original post was really about the fascinating piece that I originally cited from a2politico. I certainly did not advocate boycotting their product, just the opposite in fact. Everything I wrote was my own, honest opinion. I couldn’t even tell you why I’m so bugged by this story or by Rene’s feeble explanation that you quoted. Multiple donations totaling four grand is more than a questionable endorsement in my mind. Is there any real difference between a vote and four grand?
    Yes, in my mind there is. That’s my opinion, maybe I’m wrong.

    People should read the original piece before they make up their minds about any of it. Snyder isn’t even paying the bills he owes to the small Ann Arbor businesses he was supposed to have been elected to help. Some teachers I know were in a coney island on Plymouth road Saturday afternoon, decked out in their rally gear. Several members of security burst through the door, cased the joint, and ushered Rick Snyder and his family in to a booth. The wall of security guys browbeat the union teachers and blocked his view so that he could eat his greek salad in peace. Maybe the security team cost four grand for the afternoon, I’m not sure. Maybe none of it’s important. Maybe my family and friends will keep their tenure and their union jobs. Maybe after the food and utilities there will be enough left to buy a beer.

  2. dragon
    Posted May 4, 2011 at 11:53 pm | Permalink

    Well, I think it’s safe to say you you will never achieve:

    Wall of Foam Recognition
    You will be recognized as part of our custom mural honoring all of our Investors, Ground
    Breakers, and other special friends of the brewery without whom this project would not be
    possible. This mural will be located near the front door.

    Or have the ass honor of a:

    Personal Bar Stool Nameplate
    You’ll also receive an exclusive bar stool plate with your name engraved on it.

    Imagine the suckers who fell for that shit!

  3. Andrew Jason Clock
    Posted May 5, 2011 at 12:21 am | Permalink

    At the time, a lot of people thought Snyder was the way to go. He really seemed to have some good ideas at the beginning, especially in the primaries. Or maybe that’s because we were comparing him to Cox and Hoekstra and Granholm, but I know I was planning to support him for quite a while. When the general election rolled around, it became clear pretty quickly that there really weren’t an new ideas in the Snyder camp, and the closer it got to election day, the more Snyder started to sound like Engler. Who would have thought he’d be worse?

    Anyway, my point is, Snyder snowed a lot of people. We had been burned by Granholm, and Bernero just rubbed a lot of people wrong. Snyder seemed like the guy with new ideas ready to make a change. It just turned out that those ideas read more like Ayn Rand and the change is actually a description of what’s left in the pockets of the poor, elderly, and middle class. Is there anybody here who can say they never backed a candidate and later regretted it when he didn’t deliver quite what he/she was selling?

  4. ypsi1313
    Posted May 5, 2011 at 1:20 am | Permalink

    I honestly find nothing on A2Polwhatevr fascinating. Is Bob a friend of Pat?

    Matt and Rene are two of the absolutely best people I know, and give more of themselves than nearly anyone I know (progressive causes especially). With respect to Bob or anyone else who may doubt the Greffs, let me clue you in: You don’t need to worry. They do more for the community than you, I can almost guarantee it.

    Their support of Snyder, as Rene notes, was due to a previous relationship and pragmatic reasons. The Dem wasn’t going to win, and if you didn’t understand that you might not understand the dynamics that really drive elections in many cases (Cherry certainly understood it).

    I agree that Snyder probably still remains the best of the gop, b/c the others would have been just as bad on economic policy, but added culture war bullshit as usual, plus much worse environmental policy (basing this last part on campaign and endorsements).

    To be clear, I do not, and did not support Snyder. I reject nearly all of his proposed policies. But sadly, and for many reasons outside of the control of anyone involved in the actual election, 2010 was a really bad cycle for Dems, and sometimes if you want to advance the cause you have to be pragmatic and go for the best of the worst.

  5. ypsi1313
    Posted May 5, 2011 at 2:22 am | Permalink

    PS – Bob, if you’re an educator I withdraw the “they do more for the community than you”.

  6. dragon
    Posted May 5, 2011 at 3:21 am | Permalink

    Matt and Rene are two of the absolutely best people I know
    Sounds like a groundbreaking statement.

    or anyone else who may doubt the Greffs, let me clue you in: You don’t need to worry. They do more for the community than you
    Wow. Rich people can itemize?

    I can almost guarantee it.
    Damn you!

    Their support of Snyder, as Rene notes, was due to a previous relationship
    Wet suits? Dildos?

    The Dem wasn’t going to win
    So, as a democrat I could save some money….or.

    and if you didn’t understand that you might not understand the dynamics that really drive elections in many cases
    Political opportunism?

    I agree that Snyder probably still remains the best of the gop,
    Father Rick was my favorite of the convicted priests.

    b/c the others would have been just as bad on economic policy
    Other republicans.

    but added culture war bullshit as usual
    Asshole republicans.

    plus much worse environmental policy
    Ignorant republicans.

    To be clear, I do not, and did not support Snyder.
    But I vigorously support friends who gave shitloads of money to him.

    I reject nearly all of his proposed policies
    But at least he wasn’t a fucking Union Prick.

    But sadly
    Why?

    for many reasons outside of the control of anyone involved in the actual election
    Voters?

    2010 was a really bad cycle for Dems
    Because big Dem Donors gave to and voted for republicans.

    and sometimes if you want to advance the cause you have to be pragmatic and go for the best of the worst
    No, you don’t. Try the worst of the best.

  7. Knox
    Posted May 5, 2011 at 6:15 am | Permalink

    For what it’s worth, I like Bob’s comments here, and didn’t take his original statements to necessarily be an attack on the Greffs. People have legitimate questions and concerns. I believe, however, that Rene addressed those adequately.

  8. JSam
    Posted May 5, 2011 at 6:40 am | Permalink

    Well, EXACTLY wwhat do they think of Snyder NOW?
    I know there are people who were hoodwinked by him.
    Were they?
    Do they feel that they were lied to, or did he lay out the plan as he did after he was elected and they agreed with him?

    That’s the real question.

    Was increasing taxes on the poor up to 95% , taxing the elderly, removing the benefit to poor kids to get clothes….was htat part of his announced plan or did he lie to his “friends”?

    And really, how could ANYone be worse than Rick? What can be worse than raping the poor families, poor kids and the elderly and paying off the rich corporations? Really.

  9. HomoD
    Posted May 5, 2011 at 6:41 am | Permalink

    Matt and Rene sure seem like swell people to me and I always hear good stuff about them. If they ever need somebody to stand outside their door and be a bearier to the haters I will gladly volunteer. My ninja skills are only adequate at best though, but I can handle the little ones for sure. HI-YA!

  10. Edward
    Posted May 5, 2011 at 7:58 am | Permalink

    It’s like watching a mama gerbil devour her own offspring.

  11. Bob
    Posted May 5, 2011 at 8:39 am | Permalink

    http://www.firericksnyder.org/
    Is where to go to help recall TrickyRick. I’m sure they could use donations and places to hold gatherings for fundraisers.

  12. notoneofthecoolkids
    Posted May 5, 2011 at 9:05 am | Permalink

    Whenever someone writes such a long winded letter explaining why they feel “right” for doing something, there is usually some guilt underneath all the “explanations.”

    I don’t like beer, don’t know these people, but I know that if they are really for gay rights, planned parenthood, etc etc then you would never had voted for Snyder or any Republican in this current political climate! Just say that you voted for Snyder because you were more concerned about your check book!

    And to Andrew’s comment, “Snyder snowed a lot of people”…is simply bullshit. Informed liberal (progressive) voters realize where the ENTIRE Republican Party is headed and we run away like our asses are on fire!

  13. Brainless
    Posted May 5, 2011 at 9:06 am | Permalink

    Congrats dragon, you have unseated Boy-o for the dick-of-the-day award. Bitter much? Or is that just jealousy?

  14. Brainless
    Posted May 5, 2011 at 9:07 am | Permalink

    Oh, and the Greffs don’t owe any of you a single explanation for anything that have ever done – good or bad. They do what they do because they want to. Get out of their faces.

  15. CMP
    Posted May 5, 2011 at 9:43 am | Permalink

    I am not sure why this is such a revelation. Matt and Rene simply are honest local business owners who have always been involved in the political process. They supported Rick Snyder in the beginning and never denied that fact. They did this openly and if you speak to them directly they will be honest about whom they do and do not support politically.
    I believe from Rene’s statement that they may have some questions about Rick’s actions as governor but I for one am not willing to condemn anyone who is willing to participate in the democratic process. I am willing to condemn those who do not vote and do not get involved.
    I will say that neither gubernatorial candidate’s campaign knocked on my door or left me a flyer. I think we should be talking about why they felt Ypsilanti voters weren’t worth their time or effort instead of attacking each other.
    We should be focusing this energy on improving our community and becoming a positive voice that will be taken seriously.

  16. LaidOffTeacherPatti
    Posted May 5, 2011 at 10:19 am | Permalink

    Notoneofthecoolkids…you don’t like beer? :( I’m sad now.

    Yes, please boycott Coors. Their commercials always manage to degrade women somehow…other commercials do also but Coors just seems to be the worst of the lot. I could be wrong, but I think that the founder is a NeoCon?

  17. LaidOffTeacherPatti
    Posted May 5, 2011 at 10:20 am | Permalink

    Hey, does dragon go after any known male posters or just female ones or those of unknown gender ones? I’m just curious. I look for things like this.

  18. cmadler
    Posted May 5, 2011 at 10:21 am | Permalink

    Certainly the Greffs don’t owe any of us an explanation for anything they do…but to the extent that they hope to continue operating a profitable business in Ypsi, they might find a clear and forthright explanation for this to be a good business move.

  19. Andrew Jason Clock
    Posted May 5, 2011 at 10:38 am | Permalink

    Sorry coolkid, but not everyone jumps to the first broad generalization they come too. Some people look at the options first. Some people even get fooled by lies. Not everyone thinks its always best to vote as someone tells you you should if you are a liberal.

  20. Bob
    Posted May 5, 2011 at 10:44 am | Permalink

    The biography that came out on the Coors family several years ago is a fascinating read, the title escapes me at the moment. They founded the Heritage foundation and one of the brothers is largely credited/blamed with personally talking Ronald Reagan in to running for president. Members of Reagan’s administration and Coors Inc. traded positions in the years that followed. We have them to thank for the last thirty years of trickle down economics, the same philosophy employed by Snyder. The Coors family were never conflicted about their own choice of politicians or the causes they supported. I’m pretty sure they never backed a Dem.

  21. Big Mama
    Posted May 5, 2011 at 11:16 am | Permalink

    I’m just grateful my husband didn’t decide to divorce me for the way I voted. Snyder pulled the wool over a lot of eyes. I’m not pleased at all with my decision, but feel a little comfort in seeing I’m not the only one who should have known better.

  22. Kerri
    Posted May 5, 2011 at 11:28 am | Permalink

    JSame asked, “Well, EXACTLY what do they think of Snyder NOW?…
    Do they feel that they were lied to, or did he lay out the plan as he did after he was elected and they agreed with him? That’s the real question.”

    I don’t want to speak for Matt & Rene, but anyone who knows them at all would know that they are not happy about what Snyder’s done since he’s been in office.

    I’m sure that they expected to be criticized for supporting a Republican, but I think some of the comments that have been made here are unfair. I love this blog, but I usually don’t read the comments anymore because they are often ugly and mean-spirited.

  23. K2
    Posted May 5, 2011 at 12:50 pm | Permalink

    I think most of this complaining is coming from Ann Arbor. People in Ypsi have better things to worry about than the rantings of a nut case like Pat Lesko and her army of aliases.

  24. Chairman Meow
    Posted May 5, 2011 at 1:05 pm | Permalink

    Fellow citizens, the point is that cap-P Progressives . . . tend to not ever vote for Republicans. If this is true—and please describe how it’s not always true, if you feel that’s the case—then there’s a case to be made for the fact that the Brewery owners voted for the Republican Gubernatorial candidate for reasons of monetary-political expediency.

    It’s that simple. Do I hate them and want their business shuttered? Of course not. Will I be skeptical of their future actions/statements/positions/initiatives? Of course.

  25. Kim
    Posted May 5, 2011 at 2:23 pm | Permalink

    If you really think the Greffs supported Rick because they thought it was going to be better for their bottom line, you don’t know the Greff’s. They didn’t support Rick because he would lower their taxes. They voted for him because they thought that he’d be successful in turning Michigan around, and growing jobs here. And believe me when I tell you that they had no idea that he’d cut the EITC on our working poor. They were lied to like everyone else.

  26. Goofus
    Posted May 5, 2011 at 2:41 pm | Permalink

    Kim, your defense of the Greffs is insulting to the Greffs.

    You are saying they were too stupid to be blamed because they voted for a guy without knowing where he stood on the issues.

    Let the Greffs defend and speak for themselves. With friends like this ………

  27. Eel
    Posted May 5, 2011 at 2:52 pm | Permalink

    In retrospect, Rick Snyder should have had a website like this during the campaign.

    http://www.theatlantic.com/politics/archive/2011/05/picture-of-the-day-blogger-who-punked-gov-walker-mocks-campaign-rival-with-fake-website/238430/

  28. Stewart
    Posted May 5, 2011 at 4:35 pm | Permalink

    Rene and Matt welcome to the republican party. It’s the new Michigan party.

  29. notoneofthecoolkids
    Posted May 5, 2011 at 5:11 pm | Permalink

    Andy are you generalizing me because I am a broad?!!? How dare you!

  30. Posted May 5, 2011 at 5:12 pm | Permalink

    There’s an interesting game theoretic bit to every election, and I took the same approach to last summer’s Republican primary that Matt and Rene did: maximin. Short form, “How do I give myself some insurance by making sure that, even if I lose, I lose little rather than big.”

    In this case, for me, it was, “A Republican is probably going to win. How do I make sure it’s a Republican with fiscal policies I won’t like, rather than a Republican with fiscal policies I won’t like AND social policies I don’t like.”

    If any of you think Cox, or Bouchard, or Hoekstra would be better options, by all means, say so. Do you think any of them would have proposed a budget that was any less problematic? (If so, the only reason would be because they were too busy attacking the weak in other ways to really dedicate attention to the budget.) I continue to think that Governor Snyder is the best option we could have gotten out of that crop of Republican candidates.

    The Greffs were maybe a little more enthusiastic in their support of Candidate Snyder than I was (I was happy to see him win the primary, but can’t say I ever had a sign in my yard) – but we’re not going to make anything better by eating our own. Matt and Rene remain some of the staunchest Democrats in the County, and nobody on the left wins by attacking them.

  31. Posted May 5, 2011 at 5:13 pm | Permalink

    nobody on the left wins by attacking them.

    Oh, and from that statement you can draw what you will about A2Politico.

  32. someone
    Posted May 5, 2011 at 5:28 pm | Permalink

    Essentially the perfect argument for a ‘none of the above’ vote to be instituted.

  33. Posted May 5, 2011 at 7:07 pm | Permalink

    I have accepted the fact that there are a lot of people who will not stand on principle when money/business is the other variable. Saying “,,,,well a Republican was going to win anyway” is just coping out on your values.

  34. JSam
    Posted May 5, 2011 at 7:37 pm | Permalink

    Chairman Meow,
    I have voted for 50 years and NEVER voted for a repugnant…er Republican. And I can’t fathom anyone saying they voted for one because they knew the Dems were going to lose.
    Stick by your principles. I’m not talking to Greffs…I’m saying that’s my policy for voting.

  35. dragon
    Posted May 5, 2011 at 7:41 pm | Permalink

    I think we have identified the problem.

    Murph says:
    Matt and Rene remain some of the staunchest Democrats in the County>/i>

    Yet they are the largest republican donors.

  36. Posted May 5, 2011 at 8:21 pm | Permalink

    I just think this is counterproductive. I feel the same way about the recall effort. I was here when we tried to recall Engler and failed. I’d rather focus on achievable goals that make real impact. And picking on the Greffs, in my opinion, doesn’t fall into that category. If you don’t like them, then stop going to the Brewery, but don’t waste everyone else’s time with bitching about how they fail the Progressive purity test. Instead, focus on doing something productive… like helping Jeff Irwin in his campaign to pass a ballot initiative on the institution of a graduated income tax.

  37. Posted May 5, 2011 at 8:26 pm | Permalink

    I didn’t mention it before, but I don’t think that Bob, by raising the question about the Greffs and their alliances, was out of line. It’s a question that a lot of people have, and I think that he was respectful in the way that he broached the subject. I just see the value in taking it any further now that the Greffs have responded… Like I said above, I don’t care if people hate them for their endorsement of Rick, and vow never to hoist another pint of Snapper. I just think that, if it goes beyond that, there are better ways to spend one’s time.

  38. LisaD
    Posted May 5, 2011 at 9:10 pm | Permalink

    People really think to themselves that they won’t support a business because they don’t agree with one political decision they made, even if they do agree with 43 others they made?

    So ..Is the solution is supporting only business owners that never take a stand, never support any politicians, and never advocate for any policy at all? Instead we could all support big businesses that influence the political process quietly through lobbying, and apathetic, uninvolved local businesses. Sounds like a great plan to me!!

    It does feel like so many of us spend our time attacking each other instead of the people we actually disagree with (say… Snyder)

  39. Bob
    Posted May 6, 2011 at 9:19 am | Permalink

    Thanks Mark. For what it’s worth, I feel somewhat bad for contributing to what turned in to such a load of grief for the Greff’s. They don’t deserve to lose their business over supporting Rick Snyder, even if their explanation for playing both sides is kind of weak. I certainly was not the only one saying it. A number of people saw the politico piece and were talking about it.

    LisaD is right about keeping it about Snyder. The news today will tell you about the first round of education slashing. It occurs to me that we live in a time when people make things more complicated than they actually are. A theme that keeps popping up here is one the Greff’s seem to have used regarding supporting Rick. That is, it was “better to support him than Cox or Bouchard.” Or the Democrats were “bound to lose with a weak candidate.”
    I don’t buy this argument. Cox or Bouchard would have been obvious in what they stood for. Bernaro would have done far better to run against one of them. It would have made the distinction clear and mobilized voters who skipped the vote altogether. More importantly, it would have made Snyder Dems support their own party and ideals.

    We’ve all been so barraged with talk radio and pundit tv that we think we’re strategy voters, playing the primaries and manipulating votes. It’s kind of stupid. We are stuck in a dreadful two party system, probably for quite a while. The choice between Bernaro and Snyder was clear. Rick wasn’t really fooling anyone who was paying attention. He bought the primary and he bought the election. He is an opportunistic corporate-raider type who vaguely promised to “make the tough choices and cut the budget.”

    I guess I do believe what everyone says about the Greff’s and their good intentions. Too many people have come to their defense for it not to be true.
    We should be talking about how to stop Snyder, he was really the important part of the whole thread to begin with.

  40. EL
    Posted May 6, 2011 at 9:31 am | Permalink

    If possible, I would really prefer to steer the entirety of the conversation to the difference between “Greffs” and “Greff’s”

  41. Glen S.
    Posted May 6, 2011 at 9:34 am | Permalink

    http://firericksnyder.org/

  42. kjc
    Posted May 6, 2011 at 9:43 am | Permalink

    Nice post Bob. I forgive you the apostrophes.

  43. kjc
    Posted May 6, 2011 at 9:54 am | Permalink

    For what it’s worth, I agree with moving on. Whether you prefer the Progressive purity test or the Liberal realism test, the Greffs have responded.

  44. Brainless
    Posted May 6, 2011 at 12:45 pm | Permalink

    In honor of the 1976 Battle of the Network Stars, I challenge Matt to a 100-yard dash. (I get to be Conrad.)

    If I win, Matt has to add “I’m Snyder’s Bitch Brew” to the menu at Corner. If he wins, Corner is named a historical landmark and sold to Xe for pennies on the dollar.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cqWU9huMMco

  45. Andy1313
    Posted May 6, 2011 at 1:07 pm | Permalink

    Purity tests only lead to political irrelevancy (how are all those true progressives who supported Nader feeling?).

    I’m sympathetic to many of Bob’s points, and you’re obviously free to believe anything you want about Bernero’s chances. You may think he could have won if only some Dems hadn’t supported Snyder (not that there’s evidence for that) but the structural dynamics dictated the result. Republicans dominated primary and general turnout, both in MI and nationally. It’s not pretty, but it’s reality. I was very disappointed that that was the case, but I understood and accepted it, and I voted for Bernero.

  46. kjc
    Posted May 6, 2011 at 1:23 pm | Permalink

    “purity tests only lead to political irrelevancy”

    very realistic. i’m impressed.

  47. kjc
    Posted May 6, 2011 at 1:24 pm | Permalink

    my boss, who’s also very realistic, claims moderates were “duped” by Snyder.

    if you’re a moderate you were already duped.

  48. Mike Bodary
    Posted May 6, 2011 at 10:07 pm | Permalink

    Time to stop giving those voting for Snyder more licks for that. I for one appreciate Matt and Renee’s solid dedication to local issues and support to our city.

    Dan Vogt and I presented this Resolution and intend to pass it on to other groups to raise voices in protest. Tax breaks must be conditional on jobs and use locally and benefit to the society giving it, not to give “windfall profits” like we give the oil companies. The State must also not take away the voice of the people in self determination, otherwise our Constitution loses meaning.

    RESOLVED BY THE COUNCIL OF THE CITY OF YPSILANTI:
    WHEREAS, Governor Snyder and the Michigan Legislature have proposed dramatic cuts in revenue sharing, grants and tax credit programs, including fire protection, Historic Preservation, Brownfield Redevelopment, Community Reinvestment, and other state funding to municipalities and school districts, including to the City of Ypsilanti and Ypsilanti Public Schools, and

    WHEREAS these are just the most recent of many annual cuts over the past two decades, and will reduce the revenues of the City of Ypsilanti by an estimated additional $680,000.00, and

    WHEREAS, the problems of most local governments and schools across the state facing insolvency are caused by matters over which they have no control, including the severe effect of the recession on tax revenues and the intentional diversion of tax dollars by the Governor and Legislature from local government and school budgets to businesses in the form of new tax cuts, and

    WHEREAS, the business tax cuts are not contingent upon investment in capital development that would assist in job creation or promote economic growth, and said cuts will severely aggravate the budget deficit of the State of Michigan, and

    WHEREAS, many of the revenue, grant and tax credit provisions proposed for reduction by the Governor and Legislature are used by local governments to promote business development and job creation, and

    WHEREAS, education, police and fire protection, roads maintenance, and other basic public services are essential to economic activity and growth and public safety, and cutbacks in those services will severely impair the ability of municipalities and the State of Michigan to attract new businesses, and will thus accelerate financial decline locally and statewide, and

    WHEREAS, the budget choices of the Governor and Legislature do not address the real causes of financial difficulties of local governments and school districts, including excessive dependence on property taxes as a revenue source, and

    WHEREAS, the Governor and Legislature passed Public Act No. 4 of 2011, providing for appointment by the Governor of Emergency Managers with drastic powers far surpassing those of such managers under previous law, and effectively granting control of local government matters to the Governor through his appointees, and

    WHEREAS, the budget choices by the Governor and Michigan Legislature impair the ability of local governments and school districts to meet their financial challenges, and will trigger insolvency and the appointment of Emergency Managers in distressed municipalities and school districts, and

    WHEREAS, Emergency Managers are given authority by said Act to cut or drop essential city services, cancel contracts with employees and third party providers of services, cut departments and programs, lay off employees, sell parks, equipment, and other public assets, force consolidation of services with other municipalities, and remove the authority of local elected officials and their professional managers, and

    WHEREAS, appointment of an Emergency Manager will impair the ability of the citizenry to provide for their own protection and needs and solve their own problems, will destroy local input, choice, and control, and will amount to taxation without representation, and

    WHEREAS, an Emergency Manager does not have the experience and knowledge to understand the specific needs of local communities and their citizens as well as do local elected officials, and

    WHEREAS, an Emergency Manager would cost the City of Ypsilanti more than the current cost of our City Manager and City Council, and

    WHEREAS, even Emergency Managers will not have sufficient funds to provide basic services because the funds have been diverted to business tax cuts and other uses by the choice of the Governor and the Legislature, and

    WHEREAS, it is outrageous to propose a system of government that eliminates duly elected officials, consolidates control in one person, the Governor, and effectively allows the Governor to rule local governments and schools through his appointees, and

    WHEREAS, it is even more outrageous that this has been done suddenly and without thorough public debate or a vote of the citizens of Michigan, and

    WHEREAS, these choices of the Governor and Legislature are contrary to the cherished traditional American principles of local determination and democracy.

    NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED that the Ypsilanti City Council petitions the Governor and Michigan Legislature to immediately reconsider the destructive effects of their budget choices, and enact solutions that helps municipalities and school districts in overcoming financial challenges rather than causing and severely aggravating those financial problems as under the present state budget proposals, and

    THAT the Governor and Michigan Legislature revise the state’s outdated and failed tax system to provide relief from the impact of declining property values on local tax revenues and to reduce dependence on property taxes and ensure more stable local revenues, and

    THAT the Governor and Michigan Legislature revise the provisions of Public Act No. 4 of 2011 so that the powers of the Emergency Manager are proportionate to the actual needs of each affected municipality or school district, and that the Emergency Financial Manager be required to work with local elected officials and citizens rather than eliminating local representation and control.

    OFFERED BY: ___Council Member Bodary_________________________________

    SUPPORTED BY: ____Council Member Vogt________________________________

    YES: 7 NO: 0 ABSENT: 0 VOTE: Carried

  49. Posted May 6, 2011 at 10:44 pm | Permalink

    Thanks, Mike. I’ve been waiting on the final version of this resolution. I’d wanted to post it on the front page.

  50. Watching Laughing.
    Posted May 7, 2011 at 6:49 am | Permalink

    Democrats helping one Republican against another Republican in a primary is plausible and occurs often.
    Helping a Republican against the Democrat in the general tells all.
    I’m not fooled.

    Watching Laughing.

  51. Maria
    Posted May 7, 2011 at 7:11 am | Permalink

    A2politico wants it both ways. She argues Rick Snyder might come out on top, after all, it’s very hard to be in politics, and then she strafes those who voted and supported the guy. So what gives? If what Snyder has done turns out to not be such a bad thing to her, why the grief?

    If things turn out better than what people think it’ll be in spite of Rick Snyder’s ideas, not because of them.
    Rick Snyder is a selfish guy, make no mistake about that. The only constituent for whom he totally passionate for is small business, yet he doesn’t pay his bills on time.
    It’s no a surprise that small business owners supported him. I bet they didn’t know about the not paying his bill part just yet.
    Get over it. People make mistakes. I didn’t vote for him because, he didn’t want to debate Bernero, and then he when he did, it was all on his terms, and in my mind that’s what you call a spoiled brat. Bernero had his weakness, but they were out there, and there were something’s I don’t not believe he would have done, like the huge tax shift from business to everyone else, and eviscerate school funding.

  52. A2Dem
    Posted May 7, 2011 at 10:30 pm | Permalink

    The A2Politico post was not about Snyder; it’s about the Dems who supported him including these two Dems in Ypsi who gave him the most money of any of his donors in the city Republican or Dem.

    It would be easier to just say Snyder’s Darth Vader and move on. It’s easier to say he “fooled” everyone. It’s more complicated to say that the Greffs are talking out of both sides of their mouths now.

    They gave thousands to Snyder. If you don’t have a problem with Dems supporting Snyder, why complain that fact got sunlight? If you do have a problem with Dems supporting Snyder what’s your problem with saying out loud who’s involved and questioning whether there needs to be accountability?

    “We made a mistake?” I’ll say. You thought it would be ok to support Darth Vader this one time that you could get away with it because you’re long-time supporters of progressive causes. Um, no, it doesn’t it actually makes your actions harder to excuse.

  53. quid pro quo
    Posted August 5, 2011 at 4:22 pm | Permalink

    They knew exactly what they were doing. It’s being reported that Matt Greff will be getting a spot on new Michigan liquor control committee. That’s how politics works. It’s all about the money.

    http://www.annarbor.com/business-review/arbor-brewing-cos-matt-greff-gets-spot-on-new-michigan-liquor-control-committee/

  54. Keisha
    Posted March 8, 2013 at 5:34 pm | Permalink

    How in the fuck did I miss the fact that the Greff’s supported Snyder?

  55. For Real?
    Posted March 21, 2013 at 1:47 pm | Permalink

    I did double-take. I thought for a minute that I was reading the Onion.

  56. anon
    Posted March 21, 2013 at 2:06 pm | Permalink

    but at least now they’ll be able to open a bar in detroit for cheap.

  57. AP
    Posted March 24, 2013 at 8:23 am | Permalink

    Bad politics, but good business. It got Matt Greff an appointment on the Liquor Control Board.

    http://www.michigan.gov/lara/0,4601,7-154-35738-260375–,00.html

  58. Agustin
    Posted July 18, 2013 at 7:25 pm | Permalink

    Money trumps all ideology.

  59. anon
    Posted February 18, 2015 at 11:01 am | Permalink

    Have you read this?

    http://www.metrotimes.com/detroit/arbor-brewing-co-presents-a-case-study-in-local-business-ethics-and-crowdfunding/Content?oid=2300192

  60. Bob
    Posted February 18, 2015 at 12:52 pm | Permalink

    That’s a pretty outrageous story, if true.

  61. kjc
    Posted February 18, 2015 at 1:15 pm | Permalink

    oh jesus. so douchey.

4 Trackbacks

  1. […] May 4, 2011 Mark Maynard wrote a post titled, “Rene Greff on her support of Governor Rick Snyder.” In that post Maynard writes: Over the past several months, I’ve been approached by a number of […]

  2. […] friend, Rick Snyder, who was then running in the Republican primary for Governor. The Greffs shared their reasons for supporting the successful Republican businessman, who had run as a moderate, but many, if the comments left on this site are any indication, have […]

  3. […] 2011, Rene made her position clear in a comment on Mark Maynard’s terrific blog MarkMaynard.com. She explained how she and Matt had seen the handwriting on the wall with respect to the chances of […]

  4. […] politics. They were big supporters of Howard Dean, and I liked that. (This, of course, was before they threw their support behind Rick Snyder.) So we talked. And, eventually, Linette and I decided to cash in our savings to help make it […]

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