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    Who are the NERD fund donors Mr Snyder?

    Raise the curtain.

    RightMichigan Exclusive: Congressman Pete Hoekstra reacts to Land's decision to end campaign

    By Nick, Section News
    Posted on Fri Jun 26, 2009 at 07:07:21 AM EST
    Tags: Hoekstra, Land, Bouchard, 2010, Gubernatorial race, Cap and Trade (all tags)

    After learning yesterday that Secretary of State Terri Lynn Land was dropping out of the 2010 gubernatorial race and endorsing Mike Bouchard, a lot of folks started buzzing that west Michigan was now uncontested (and ripe) for 2nd District Congressman Pete Hoekstra.  Of course, we were curious what HE thought.  

    Late yesterday, through the miracle of technology, I had a chance to catch up with the Congressman while he was in the District of Columbia.

    RightMichigan: Congressman, thanks for making the time.  I know your schedule is crazy right now!

    Congressman Hoekstra: Glad to join you and the community here at Right Michigan.

    I am in DC trying to fight off the Democrat's Cap and Tax bill so that Michiganders and the manufacturing industry don't get hammered more by anti-growth leadership.  Democrats announced that (Friday) they will attempt to pass a massive Cap and Tax program to fight global warming and in the meantime are willing to pass the costs onto consumers via higher energy prices.

    RM: Thanks for fighting that fight.  Wish you had a little more support from the rest of the Michigan delegation, but that's a different discussion.  Big campaign news broken in Grand Rapids today.  

    What is your reaction to Secretary Land's decision to abandon her own campaign and instead back Mike Bouchard?

    CPH: I know that when I announced I was retiring from Congress, I took some time with my family so that we could decide together what was best for us and our future in Michigan. I am sure Secretary Land did the same.  Since I announced my candidacy back in March I have been focused on charging ahead, getting out and around the state and conducting a conversation about turning around Michigan.  That remains my focus.  I am very happy with my decision.  I can't speak for her, but I imagine the Secretary feels the same way today.

    RM: How do you think this affects the electoral playing field?

    CPH: People in our state are worried about their jobs, families and this economy - and so I haven't heard a whole lot of clamoring for my insight on party politics or my ability as a pundit to predict the field.  But since you asked Nick, my thoughts on it are pretty straightforward: I have always figured that the field would likely dwindle down by the time August 2010 rolled around and that the best candidate will emerge.  My opinion hasn't changed. I'm not sure Terri's decision does anything beyond confirming that the field will shrink some before we get to the primary, and the voters will decide who is best-equipped for the job.  

    RM: Many are now speculating that Land would become Bouchard's running mate should he win the nomination.  Have you put any thought into who might join you on a Hoekstra ticket?

    CPH: Just like I have done during my 16 years serving west Michigan, I'm focused on hearing from the people around the state and being the kind of leader that they need.  If I do that well and set a strong example of servant leadership I intend to provide, I think like-minded people will gravitate to my campaign and we will build a strong team from the bottom up.  There are a tremendous amount of talented people out there who share my passion for this state and I look forward to working with as many of them as possible going forward.  We can cross that bridge later.

    RM: What would you say to win voters, especially west Michigan voters who might have supported a Land campaign and now might be seriously considering following their candidate to the Bouchard camp?

    CPH: I don't think voters look at our crisis of leadership in Michigan as regional. I am in the race because I have a passion for West Michigan, Northern Michigan, Southeast Michigan, Central Michigan and the Upper Peninsula.  I understand that the people losing jobs in west Michigan and the businesses closing in west Michigan have something in common with the people of the rest of state: they are all struggling and starved for leadership.  

    I think Michigan's future starts with all of us, and I am prepared to lead as we tackle our biggest challenges.  No other person in this race has 15 years as an executive in the private sector and 16 years served in public office.  I think that balance gives me an edge.  

    RM: Congressman, thanks again!

    < Media supporters of the welfare state have an ideology too | Friday in the Sphere: June 26 >

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