The front page of the Free Press today declares DeVos possesses a small lead over Granholm, and our governor’s job approval rating is below 50%. And, in what seems like disturbingly vengeful reasoning, most residents polled claimed they “blame Georege W. Bush far more for the state’s lagging economy than Gov. Jennifer Granholm, but …aren’t ready to re-elect her to a second term.” Tammy Taylor-Schmidt, whoever the hell she is, was quoted as saying “It’s (the poor economy) more than the governor, but like anything else, someone’s head has to roll.”
I just want to make sure I understand this correctly. The majority of those polled admit the suffering Michigan economy stems from poor decisions made by Bush, and because of said bad economy, we will hold responsible nice, Canadian Jennifer Granholm and elect Dick DeVos, a mega-millionaire who is spending his own fortune on the campaign, a man who has donated millions of dollars to Bush and other Republicans? And this makes sense?
With the last presidential election, I believed in John Kerry’s election completely. My brother, Derek, was living with me at the time while I finished graduate school – S. had moved to Michigan to begin law school. Derek and I woke up early, declared it “New President Day,” walked outside on the unnaturally warm NOvember morning, voted, went to the pastry shop for espresso and, well, pastries, came home and turned on the news. And waited. And waited. And when Kerry lost, we gave in to the national malaise; we took the loss personally. It truly felt hard to believe that our fellow countrymen could look around them, assess the state of our union, and think it was okay. Much was made of the sense of alienation young liberals experienced after that November. I cried. My brother cried. My friends cried. And trust me, I know how hyperbolic that sounds, I know how ludicrous it is to cry over an election you participated in. But we did. And then we moved on.
And now, where are we? Putin flat out making fun of ‘democracy’ in Iraq at the G8 summit, and who can blame him? American and Iraqi soldiers dying dailing, not to mention civilians? Israel striking Lebanon and issuing threats to Syria, and North Korea testing missiles directed at Hawaii? And we aren’t demanding an impeachment? We aren’t crying for a new president? Or is Bush really the leader we want taking us into the next five years? Because, if that is the case, S. needs to apply to that French law program immediately. I mean, Clinton got a little tail from Monica and then lied about it, and the country went crazy; we just lost our minds. And, in case you missed it amidst the other wreckage, Bush will be vetoing a senate-approved embryonic stem-cell reseearch plan this week. Because, you know, he has that kind of time on his hands right now.
In Michigan DeVos apparently appeals most to the mid-forties crowd, the crowd still driving SUV’s and complaining about the gas prices, the suburbanites too scared to step foot in Detroit, the folks who shop at Somerset and dine at PF Changs and then short the waitresses. He does not appeal to the poor, the indigent or the elderly. But I fear, up here, the ability for DeVos to triumph, and then our state, our state of crystaline lakes, sleepy rivers, endless sanddunes, miles and miles of forests, our beautiful and quiet state will be in the hands of a man who supports our president, opposes abortion (well, of course – utterly unoriginal, that is), who is hanging onto the coattails of his father and his grandfather, who thrives on the comfort of the Amway fortune? And really, our country is led by a man like this. Do we really need to give up or state, too?
We can only hope that Granholm finds a way to combat DeVos in the next four months. I’m not sure she has necessarily been the best governor we could have, but she deserves four more years without the legacy Engler left behind haunting her. Moreover, at heart she is going to care more about our state than DeVos ever could…given her Canadian citizenship, she’ll never be president, so her passion comes from a love for our State and a belief in its potential, rather than a stepping stone in joining Cheney and Bush and their own particular axis of evil.
So, come on, Jennifer. Let’s see your fighting face. Stop with the smiles – the voters don’t like them. And enough with the immaculate pant suits. It’s time to take DeVos down, and we aren’t beyond a smear-campaign. You’ve got enough supporters to take you far in this race, but we can’t do it alone.