I challenge you to show me even one instance of someone calling Rick Snyder “The Comeback Kid”

If you’re in the State of Michigan, and you’re watching the Super Bowl on television this evening, you’re likely going to see the following ad… the first real ad of Governor Rick Snyder’s reelection campaign.


“Some call him a nerd. But Michigan now calls him The Comeback Kid. Politicians had pushed Michigan down to the bottom of the barrel. We elected this self-made nerd as Governor and he started making long overdue tough decisions for the right reasons. Decisions that are bringing Michigan back! Governor Rick Snyder cut job-killing taxes and Michigan gained two hundred and twenty thousand private sector jobs, first in the nation in manufacturing jobs. Rick focused on veterans… made it easier for them to find jobs. We’re number one in states that have recovered the most from the Great Recession. Education funding’s up. Our one and a half billion dollar deficit is gone. Michigan is coming back. Because our governor loves budgets, ignores politics, and brings us results. Michigan’s nerd is The Comeback Kid.”

There’s certainly a lot to talk about… not the least of which being the perplexing footage of Snyder coming at the voters of Michigan with a snorkel in his mouth… but I’d like to start by offering a reward. I’ve got a crisp $5 bill on my desk for the first person who can demonstrate that anyone not on Snyder’s payroll has referred to him as “The Comeback Kid.” I can accept the other lies in the ad, of which there are many, but it really irks me that they’re trying to perpetuate the ludicrous notion that the nickname “Comeback Kid” has been bestowed upon him. I don’t care how much money you have, you can’t choose your own nickname.

I don’t envy Fred Davis, the Hollywood-based ad man who was given the task of creating the spot. When he’d come up with Snyder’s “One Tough Nerd” campaign during the last election cycle, it was easy. Snyder was largely an unknown entity. All people knew, for the most part, was that he’d ascended to great heights in the corporate world without the benefit of charisma. And “One Tough Nerd” took that lack of charisma and made it an attribute. “No, he’s not inspiring political leader,” we were told, “but we don’t need that right now. We need a guy who’s above politics, who will sit in an office with a spreadsheet and fix what’s wrong.” Of curse, as we know now, the nerd wasn’t that tough. (He caved to the right wing ideologues within his party every time he was given an opportunity.) And, to be honest, he wasn’t so much of a nerd. Despite what’s said in the ad about job growth, Michigan has the third worst unemployment rate in the country. So, Davis had a herculean task. He had to recreate the magic of “One Tough Nerd” with an incumbent who we knew to be neither. They needed a new nickname to capture the imagination of an unimpressed electorate, and they had less than nothing to work with. (Hence the bewildering imagery of Snyder snorkeling alone in a pool.) If I were Davis, I think I would have passed. But he apparently took the $300,000, spun the wheel, and came up with the absolutely laughable “Comeback Kid.” It might as well have been, “Novice Kelp Farmer,” as it has no basis whatsoever in reality, and would have worked better with the snorkeling imagery. Snyder has never come back from anything, unless you count the time that he came back to Michigan after off-shoring jobs at Gateway.

I’m not certain of it, but I suspect the ad, which, according to the Detroit Free Press, cost Snyder approximately $700,000 to produce and air during the Super Bowl, makes Snyder one of the first incumbent governors in the country to officially launch his reelection campaign. And this, I think, speaks volumes to the amount of trouble that he’s in, as his former Democratic supporters abandon him, his Democratic opponent starts gaining momentum, and the right wing zealots in the Republican party continue their search for a more ideologically pure replacement. (It’s aparently not enough the Snyder has done everything that they’ve wanted, they want someone who has the perfect blend of paranoia and rage that they can feed off of. Someone like Michele Bachmann.)

Speaking of the ideological purge taking place within the Michigan Republican party, did you happen to see that the Delta County GOP came out a few days ago, accusing members of their own party, like Tim Walberg, who expressed displeasure about racist and homophobic comments made by Michigan GOP chairman Dave Agema of having “blatantly surrendered to the homosexual & stealth jihad agenda”?

So, Snyder is standing on a sandbar that’s rapidly being eroded on every side.

Fortunately, though, he has a snorkel…


More important than a snorkel, though, he’s also got the backing of wealthy conservatives like Dick DeVos, who appreciate his willingness to toe the line on everything from right-to-work to rape insurance. I guess we’ll have to wait and see how far that takes him.

One more thing… Does anyone one else hear Moving in Stereo when looking at that image of Snyder emerging from the water?

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  1. Posted February 2, 2014 at 11:21 pm | Permalink

    “Governor Rick Snyder cut job-killing taxes.”

    Correct me if I’m wrong, but didn’t he pay for the Michigan Business Tax cut by shifting taxes to workers and seniors?

  2. Posted February 2, 2014 at 11:27 pm | Permalink

    “Education funding’s up.”

    Correct me if I’m wrong, but isn’t it still quite a bit less than it was when Snyder came into office? As I recall, per-pupil funding dropped almost $500 under Snyder. I don’t doubt that, this year, they may have raised it a bit, but it’s disingenuous at best to suggest that he’s investing in education. It would be like me cutting the pay of an employee by %50, then offering her a %5 raise, and calling a press conference to talk about the raise, without acknowledging that she was still making about %45 less than she had been.

  3. EOS
    Posted February 2, 2014 at 11:58 pm | Permalink

    Snyder is, without a doubt, significantly better than Granholm. Our State will comeback strong if we can keep Democrats out of the governor’s office.

  4. wobblie
    Posted February 3, 2014 at 4:45 am | Permalink

    whoa! A small break through with EOS. He actually acknowledges the reality that Michigan has not made a “come back” under Snyder. Now if he would face up to the reality that the only thing that has helped Michigan’s economy was the Democrats and Obama saving the auto industry. That help was largely undermined by the republicans killing the one industry which had a chance of creating working class jobs (ie. the film industry). Snyder has done nothing to help diversify Michigan’s economy.

  5. EOS
    Posted February 3, 2014 at 7:15 am | Permalink

    Kudos to Wobblie for not trying to defend Granholm’s trainwreck.

  6. anonymous
    Posted February 3, 2014 at 7:29 am | Permalink

    It’s an unintentional metaphor. Snyder has a snorkel in order to survive the “perfect storm” that he helped to create. Most of us, however, have no means of survival.


  7. Posted February 3, 2014 at 8:54 am | Permalink

    I just called Snyder “the Comeback Kid.”

    Can I come and pick up my $5?

  8. Edward
    Posted February 3, 2014 at 9:02 am | Permalink

    Here’s the gif of Snyder emerging from the water like Phoebe Cates.

    You have been warned.


  9. Eel
    Posted February 3, 2014 at 9:29 am | Permalink

    FWIW, I did an Urban Dictionary search of “snorkel” and found the following.

    snorkel: “Oral sex act whereby the recipient’s balls are licked or sucked while his penis is being vigorously rubbed by hand .”


  10. Meta
    Posted February 3, 2014 at 10:15 am | Permalink

    Schauer’s camp responded.

    Schauer spokesperson Zack Pohl called Snyder’s Super Bowl ad a “Hail Mary” and responded by sharing less flattering statistics about the state during Snyder’s tenure.

    “Michigan now has the fourth worst unemployment in the nation, and we’re 49th in job growth,” Pohl said. “Snyder’s ad shows he’s out of touch by selling more happy talk and catch phrases, when what we really need is an economy that works for the middle class. The people of Michigan aren’t buying what this Governor is selling.”

    Read more:

  11. Rick Snyder by proxy
    Posted February 3, 2014 at 10:28 am | Permalink

    Dear Michigander,

    Being called the Comeback Kid is even better than being called One Tough Nerd!

    When I ran for Governor, I said I would put politics aside and focus on results. I knew that Michigan could do better. I’m a numbers guy and there weren’t a whole lot of good numbers to talk about.

    But now, it’s a different story:

    * We gained 220,000 private sector jobs

    * We’re 1st in the nation in manufacturing jobs

    * We’re 1st in the nation in states that have recovered the most from the Great Recession

    * We’re 3rd in high-tech growth

    And we did it all while cutting taxes and reducing our $1,500,000,000 deficit to $0. Michigan’s deficit is gone, and its been replaced with a surplus.

    Michigan is coming back!

    And, that’s what we’re telling the state in our first campaign ad.

    Take a peek now, then share it with your friends to help keep our comeback on track!

    Sign up to let us know know you’re with us, follow the campaign on Facebook or Twitter, or make a donation to help get the word out.

    Rick Snyder

  12. Elf
    Posted February 3, 2014 at 12:09 pm | Permalink

    Progress Michigan launched a parody yesterday on their SnyderFails.org site.


  13. K2
    Posted February 3, 2014 at 3:49 pm | Permalink

    If he’d been in a Survivaball, he would have gotten my vote.


  14. Posted February 3, 2014 at 10:02 pm | Permalink

    Holy Crazy Eyes. That one shot near the end will haunt my nightmares.

  15. TB
    Posted February 4, 2014 at 2:41 pm | Permalink

    What does it mean that the Scientology ad which aired during the Super Bowl was less crazy?


  16. Sarah Gilbertson
    Posted February 17, 2014 at 10:10 am | Permalink

    I read an interview where he said that it was symbolic. His reemerging from the pool, he said, was like Michigan reemerging after being underwater economically for so long.

  17. K2
    Posted February 20, 2014 at 3:13 pm | Permalink

    Whatever he’s doing is apparently working. According to today’s FREEP, Snyder now has an eight-point lead over Democratic challenger Mark Schauer.


  18. Posted July 13, 2016 at 2:32 am | Permalink

    This was a very important post. I am glad to see that it is still available on the internet.

    You are poor because they are rich.

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  1. […] you in. This, as you can imagine, presents significant challenges. While Snyder can afford to air ads during the Super Bowl declaring himself the “comeback kid” (in spite of the fact that Michigan, at the same time, was 49th among the states in projected job […]

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