Melissa Gilbert threatens to open a half-pint of whoop ass on Michigan Republicans, announces run for Congress

I don’t know much about Melissa Gilbert’s politics, but, as she’s the only candidate running for Congress in Michigan who has called me “a prince,” I suspect I’ll be supporting her…

[For those of you who weren’t around during those exciting days in 2013 when Gilbert was leaving comments on this site, just click here to experience the celebrity appearance for yourself.]

As for why she’s running, Gilbert, who’s best known for playing the young Laura Ingalls Wilder on NBC’s “Little House on the Prairie” 30-some years ago, had the following to say… “I’m running for Congress to make life a little easier for all the families who feel they have fallen through the cracks in today’s economy.”

The Republicans, for what it’s worth, seem to be taking the threat of Congresswoman Half-pint seriously, in spite of the fact that the incumbent, Republican Mike Bishop, beat his Democratic opponent by a whopping 12 percentage points in 2014. [Bishop beat Democrat Eric Schertzing 54%-42%, when both faced-off to win the seat vacated by Republican Mike Rogers.] Here’s their first shot at Gilbert, who they’re clearly trying to paint as an out-of-touch Hollywood type.


Given how conservative Howell is… who can forget the racist tweets from members of their all-white high school basketball team… I don’t imagine she has much of a shot, especially once the mud starts flying, but I think she’s got a better shot than most, and my hope is that, at the very least, she’ll cause the Michigan Republican Party to spend a lot more of their money in the 8th Congressional District than they would have normally, perhaps making other races around the state a bit more competitive.

For what it’s worth, Gilbert isn’t a political lightweight. Among other things, she has served as President of the Screen Actors Guild (SAG) and Vice-President of the AFL-CIO. [She currently serves as Chair of the Screen Actors Guild’s President’s Task Force on Affirmative Action.] And, as if that weren’t enough, her grandfather, Harry Crane, was also the creator and writer of The Honeymooners. Oh, and she dated Billy Idol.

As for her financial difficulties, which were alluded to in the Republican message above, Gilbert’s husband, actor Timothy Busfield, recently shared the following with the Detroit News. “(The debt) has more to do with the housing crash and divorce in the past,” He said. “It’s a product of what happened with the economy. It’s unfortunate and it’s been happening a lot. It’s not a big deal.” Gilbert added, “I’ve set up an installment plan to fully pay off my debt and will continue to work as hard as I can to erase this debt and dig myself out of this hole. I am absolutely positive that I can do it.” No word yet from the Gilbert camp about the dog stylist.

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  1. anonymous
    Posted August 11, 2015 at 6:29 am | Permalink

    The only thing people on the right like more than hollow talk of patriotism and liberty is celebrity. If she can bring money into the state, she’s got a chance.

  2. Kat
    Posted August 11, 2015 at 7:45 am | Permalink

    She has a history of addiction, and there are stories floating around the internet about her husband’s womanizing. I’m afraid that they are going to tear her apart. Hopefully she’s strong enough to withstand it.

  3. Germaine Gebhard
    Posted August 11, 2015 at 8:15 am | Permalink

    This is going to be very interesting. Is this for the Nov 2016 election? There will be a lot more voters than usual since it’s a presidential election and her name recognition trounces the other guy with the general populace.

  4. Smeat
    Posted August 11, 2015 at 9:14 am | Permalink

    She may have a chance: “Bishop is among 23 incumbents — and the third from Michigan — to be designated as the National Republican Congressional Committee’s most vulnerable.”

  5. Patti Smith
    Posted August 11, 2015 at 9:34 am | Permalink

    I thought they wanted to get rid of the IRS and government and such? Why do they care? Shouldn’t they be delighted that she is sticking it to big gubmint?

  6. Meta
    Posted August 11, 2015 at 9:38 am | Permalink

    Her official announcement:

    Melissa Gilbert Announces Run for Congress

    Livingston County, Mich. – Today, author and advocate Melissa Gilbert
    announced her candidacy to represent Michigan’s 8th congressional

    “Here in Michigan, I know people are doing their best to make a good
    life for themselves and their families. When it comes down to it, I
    think that’s what we all really want,” said Gilbert. “I’m running for
    Congress to make life a little easier for all the families who feel
    they have fallen through the cracks in today’s economy. I believe
    building a new economy is a team effort, and we need to bring fresh
    voices to the table to get the job done.”

    A working mom and now a grandmother, Melissa Gilbert lives in
    Livingston County, Michigan with her husband Timothy Busfield. She
    believes that supporting working families everywhere means building an
    economy that works for everyone.

    A longtime advocate, Melissa is deeply committed to serving her
    community. She has been particularly attuned to issues confronting
    women, children and families.

    Born in Los Angeles, Melissa Gilbert landed her first acting job at
    age two. From 1973-1983, she starred as Laura Ingalls Wilder on Little
    House on the Prairie. She later went on to become president of the
    Screen Actors Guild, where she represented hundreds of thousands of
    performers across the country. Gilbert has authored three books,
    including the New York Times’ Best Seller “Prairie Tale: A Memoir.”

    Melissa is passionate, committed and ready to work hard to help make a
    difference for the people of Michigan.

    Gilbert is a Democrat running against incumbent Congressman Mike
    Bishop (R). Bishop’s seat is regarded as one of national Republicans’
    most vulnerable.

  7. Anonymatt
    Posted August 11, 2015 at 9:55 am | Permalink

    I’m not really interesting unless she runs against Alison Arngrim.

  8. Anonymatt
    Posted August 11, 2015 at 10:00 am | Permalink

    I meant interested. It’s debatable whether I’d be interesting.

  9. Bob
    Posted August 11, 2015 at 10:24 am | Permalink

    I like the idea of having more reps with strong union experience. I’m not sure someone who owes hundreds of thousands in unpaid taxes should even be allowed to run for public office though. Dating Billy Idol is a frightening lack of judgment too.

  10. Posted August 11, 2015 at 1:50 pm | Permalink

    She has charisma, which is more than I can say for some past Democratic candidates. I hope she goes in and cleans up!

    Also, Mark, is that a “two girls one cup” picture at the top of my screen? Or was it just bowls of poop? Btw, I’ve convinced myself it was just chocolate pudding AND PLEASE DON’T MAKE ME THINK OTHERWISE!

  11. Elf
    Posted August 11, 2015 at 2:44 pm | Permalink

    Funny you should mention Alison Arngrim. She’s running for Congress too.

  12. maryd
    Posted August 11, 2015 at 3:05 pm | Permalink

    I agree with TeacherPatti. If someone can break into this Republican stronghold, it may be her!

  13. Mr. Y
    Posted August 11, 2015 at 3:18 pm | Permalink

    According to Twitter, Arngrim isn’t running. She’s angling to be Gilbert’s evil campaign manager.

  14. Westside
    Posted November 3, 2016 at 6:33 am | Permalink

    Don’t tell them I’m posting here! I want to avoid that insanity. I had to switch coffee shops. I really like the Sweetwaters in the new Libaray branch though it’s great.

    Don’t forget to plug the two great women that are running and coming close in the 7th and 8th districts in Michigan.
    suzanna shkreli

    They both seem to be for all people; whatever gender, class or race. But they are Democrats so I like that. Driskell just like Bernie on trade, imagine that?

    It’s important to remember those down ballot races this year and reach out to help those around us. Plus foil the Republicans redistricting efforts.

    Thank you for getting out there and working for Hillary and this great Blog and your progressive politics. You are a treasure!

    I’ll still read but no more commenting from me. It’s getting creepy.

    ( I was talking about Lynne ( sorry Lynne) with the scary old woman comment. I was surprised because she seemed so reasonable and then that kick them in the balls so much reminded me of Trumps – punch them in the face. It was sad. Oh well. Why does she think everything’s about her? Can’t she just continue to argue with Bob, Kjc, Demetrius, EOS, Tony, Ytown etc and leave me alone?)

    I do think you should have a contest where the prize is dinner with you.

  15. Posted November 3, 2016 at 6:40 am | Permalink

    Driskell is a narrow minded, economically illiterate protectionist pining for a return to an idealized version of the 1960s. Interesting.

    Now, I’m sorry that I campaigned for her back when she was running for State Rep.

  16. maryd
    Posted November 3, 2016 at 7:38 am | Permalink

    Dirt Bag, you may not like her but we need every democrat regardless for Michigan to turn our state around.

  17. Jean Henry
    Posted November 3, 2016 at 7:54 am | Permalink

    Westside– It doesn’t matter what woman you were talking about. And I didn’t assume you were talking about me. You were vagues as always. I said, if… I was looking forward to meeting you at Argus. Again, you should really introduce yourself. It’s creepy otherwise. I use my name here. You don’t. To each his own, but I’d prefer you not repeatedly mention that you have seen me 2 blocks from my home. Capiche?

    PS– Diskell is an idiot on trade. It may just get her elected here. I want a Dem majority. I want her to win. I’m just glad I don’t have to vote for her.

  18. Posted November 3, 2016 at 9:31 am | Permalink

    I do like Driskell.

    But if she’s playing populism (or Sanders unrealistic ideas on trade), that’s a pretty big disappointment.

  19. Jean Henry
    Posted November 3, 2016 at 9:35 am | Permalink

  20. Jean Henry
    Posted November 3, 2016 at 11:12 am | Permalink

    Pretty sure I know who Westside is. I read back a few and the MO is the same. His name is Mark but not the Mark of this blog. If I am right, this whole thing is creepier than I imagined. Please don’t refer to me again on these pages– and even though you never use my name, only she. It’s not ok. People here can see that.

    Oh well, it was time for me to go anyway.

  21. Lynne
    Posted November 3, 2016 at 12:39 pm | Permalink

    FWIW, I was talking about *metaphorically* kicking Trump supporters in the balls but I suppose that even though I spelled that out, it was just too much for some. I should have said that I hope that Clinton defeats Trump because doing so will send a message that toxic masculinity is unacceptable. I should never have assumed that someone like Westside would understand symbolic language and that my comment would be taken more literally than I intended.

  22. iRobert
    Posted March 3, 2019 at 7:40 am | Permalink

    Westside, I hope you can make it to our celebration Wednesday night. Everyone’s going to be there.

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