Another tale of not learning from the lessons of history…

For a so-called conservative, “Republican” Rick Snyder sure does have this thing for imposing a tax hike on Michigan Motorists (along with the aid of his BFF Sen. Arlan Meekhof).

He even thinks that his own story is proof positive that it can be done.

I just love it when Mr. “relentless positive action”, conveniently forgets to include several glaring details.

Oh well, those who fail to learn from the lessons of history…

Oh no!

Why no, your future careers aren’t in any jeopardy!

{More below the fold}


In this week’s Detroit News, Gov. Rick Snyder is attempting to allay the fears of recalcitrant lawmakers signing onto the Snyder/Meekhof gas tax hike, by citing his own re-election as an example of surviving the wrath of angry constituents in your home districts.

Never mind the fact that Snyder’s re-election had more to do with a lack of options that anything else, anyone who is seriously considering his argument is making a very risky (career) decision.

To illustrate my point, let’s all jump into the DMC-12 (I just had it detailed) and take a trip back to 1983.

In 1983, things were not going so well for Michigan.

Jim Blanchard was in the governor’s office. The state budget wasn’t looking so hot. So despite a campaign promise made not even a few months earlier to only use it as a “last resort”, Gov Blanchard jammed through a 38% income tax hike pretty much after getting elected to pull over $600-million out of the economy and dump it into Lansing. To make matters worse, Michigan Voters were aware of the fact that Gov. Blanchard wanted to jam through an income tax hike and made the opposition to this well-known to other elected officials prior to the vote.

Those elected officials effectively told Michigan Taxpayers what to go and do with ourselves, and voted for it anyway.

So later in 1983 recall petition were filed, the required number of signatures was gathered and elections were scheduled about a week apart to pull two Michigan Senators out of office: Sen. David Serotkin & Sen. Phil Mastin.

Dumfounded by the recall campaign, both attempted to argue that “the recall shouldn’t be decided by just one vote in office” (sound familiar?) and fought against being removed from office. Their results were unsuccessful and they both lost their seats at the end of 1983.

Sen. Serotkin didn’t like the outcome and tried to “resign” from office before the votes were certified in order to run in the election to “replace” him. Then AG Frank Kelley didn’t buy it and shot that argument down in flames, toot sweet.

Time for our next jaunt. Let’s all hop back into the DMC-12 and visit 1992 and the re-election campaign of one George H.W. Bush (aka Bush v1.0).

Los Angeles is flames and ruins due to rioting after a belligerent motorist has a problem comprehending the word “stop”. The Atari 2600 is finally phased out. And some well-to-do outsider is attempting to upset the applecart by throwing his hat in the ring for US President (no, not The Donald).

The election finally comes down to a race between one former governor from Arkansas: B.J. Clinton, (then) sitting president George H.W. Bush and H. Ross Perot.

Aside from his “wimp” moniker causing him to lose traction in the polls (frequently breaking campaign promises didn’t exactly help with that), Bush has another problem leading up to the election. Earlier in 1988 he made a very famous campaign promise at the national convention in New Orleans, “Read my lips: no new taxes”. Those words came back to bite him in the hind-end after democrats balked in 1990 on making cuts in order to balance to the federal budget.

That pretty much was the last nail in the coffin for Bush who effectively drove away voters from the Team ‘r” brand and gave us eight years of a B.J. Clinton presidency in the process.

Okay one more trip, let’s all get back into the DMC-12 and head to 2011.

We’re going to stop off in Grand Blanc and watch what happened to the political career of Rep. Paul Scott. Aside from supporting Gov Snyder’s tax hiking binge, as former chair of the House Education Committee he had a hand in the teacher tenure reform legislation making its way through Lansing.

As you might imagine, this didn’t sit very well with the Michigan Education Association who pulled out all of the stops to get him out of office.

In a very heated race, and despite the tactics gleaned by Michigan politicians on placing as many legal and procedural hurdles in the way of a recall election, by a one point margin,  Rep. Scott got booted out of office.

Everyone back in the DMC-12!

Last stop: 2015.

Now, let me summarize a “friendly” warning to those of you up in Lansing who are having second-thoughts regarding the Snyder/Meekhof sales pitch to raise taxes: Don’t!

Oh, sure. You might be able to fend off the challenge initially via procedural hurdles.

Maybe you’ll be able to scrape up some money to fight it once it gets onto the ballot (Remember: We are also aware of the tricks you will play).

But in just the few examples I’ve included above, recalls CAN AND DO HAPPEN.

Even if you’ve actually got some skills that you think are in demand (unless you’re got a cushy job lined up for you after you are out of office), the Michigan Job Environment isn’t as rosy as you might think.

I would highly recommend declining the governor’s overtures and vote “No” on any bill to raise taxes.

I would also encourage you to recommend the same to your colleagues in the Michigan Legislature.

‘Nuff said.

You Betcha! (9)Nuh Uh.(0)

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