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INSIDE MICHIGAN POLITICS
Inside: Pray Tell
They Said It
December 7, 2015
Vol. XV, No. 26
KEY 2014 STATE SENATE ROLL CALLS:
WARREN EARNS ‘MOST LIBERAL’ TITLE FOR HISTORIC 5TH STRAIGHT YEAR,
HUNE SCORES 100% CONSERVATIVE VOTING RECORD
Another year, another “Most Liberal” accolade for state Sen. Rebekah Warren (D-Ann Arbor).
She already made history as the first senator to spend an entire
term (2011, 2012, 2013 and 2014) as IMP’s liberal champ of the
chamber (See Vol. XV, No. 1). And now Warren — the only female
in her 11-member caucus — extended her streak for another year,
with a near-perfect 93.3% liberal voting record in 2015.
Placing second in IMP’s annual rankings on key 2015 roll call
votes was state Sen. Vincent Gregory (D-Southfield), who earned a
90.3% record. Sens. Morris Hood III (D-Detroit) and Coleman
Young II were slightly behind, coming in third with 90% voting
In 2014, now-Minority Leader Jim Ananich (D-Flint) was the runner-up, with Gregory and then-Sen. Gretchen Whitmer (D-East
Lansing) tied for third.
At the other end of the political/ideological spectrum, there was
another impressive feat: “Most Conservative” Sen. Joe Hune (RHamburg) notched a 0% liberal voting record.
The second-term senator is the only legislator of the 148 serving
this year in either the state House or Senate to post a perfect record
— be it conservative or liberal (See Vol. XV, No. 25). No one did so
in 2014. Hune was also the conservative gold medalist in 2011, 2012
and 2013, and had to settle for second fiddle in 2014.
Sen. Pat Colbeck (R-Canton) had the second-most conservative
voting record in 2015 with 3.2%. And Sens. Dave Hildenbrand
(R-Lowell) and John Proos (R-St. Joseph) tied for third, with each
scoring a 6.5% liberal record.
In 2014, Sen. Jack Brandenburg (R-Harrison Twp.) and nowformer Sen. John Moolenaar (R-Midland) were the conservative
titans. Colbeck and Sen. Phil Pavlov (R-St. Clair) tied for third.
In this — IMP’s annual effort to determine the ideological pecking
order of senators — 100% is the gold standard for a representative
who voted the liberal position on 31 different roll calls on an array of
social, economic, taxation, environmental, civil rights and public
If a roll call was missed, it was simply thrown out. Under these
ground rules, failure to vote on some issues may have caused a senator’s score to vary in percentage terms from what it would have been
had s/he voted on all of them; each roll call was weighted equally.
This IMP profile is based on votes in the 98th Legislature starting in
early February right up to the Thanksgiving/deer hunting break.
Like virtually every survey undertaken by IMP over the past two
dozen years, there was no overlap between the Democrat who was
the most conservative (or moderate) and the most liberal (or moderate)
For 2015, the former was Virgil Smith (D-Detroit), who’s managed to stay in the GOP-controlled Senate despite being charged
with three felonies. He posted a 70.4% liberal voting record, a notable drop from his 89.66% tally last year, when he was the fifthmost liberal senator.
And the latter was Tory Rocca (R-Sterling Heights), who slipped
in just over the liberal line with a 51.6% voting record for 2015.
Rocca was also the least conservative Republican last year, along with
Mike Nofs, achieving 40.0% liberal records.
Following is a list of the litmus test roll calls used in IMP’s massive
study, followed by the scores of the 38 senators:
■ 2/10/15, #8, Senate Resolution 7, calling for congressional action and an appeal by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and
the Michigan Department of Natural Resources to remove the
Western Great Lakes gray wolf population from the endangered and threatened species list (Y=C, N=L).
■ 2/26/15, #35, SB 34, eliminating county concealed pistol licensing boards and transferring their duties to the State Police
and county clerks (Y=C, N=L).
■ 3/5/15, #39, HB 4078, appropriating $24.7 million from the
state Natural Resources Trust Fund for various land acquisitions and recreation projects (Y=L, N=C).
■ 3/10/15, #41, SB 72, prohibiting the possession or use of medical marijuana on any portion of private property that is open
to the public, or where it is banned by the property owner, and
permitting landlords to refuse to rent to someone who wants
to use medical marijuana on the property. (Y=C, N=L).
■ 3/18/15, #54, SB 84, requiring the Secretary of State to develop
a “Choose Life” license plate, with fees collected from its sale
given to anti-abortion organizations and projects (Y=C, N=L).
■ 3/19/15, #60, SB 139, requiring the state Dept. of Education
(MDE) to set rules that permit no less than two days a week on
which schools could hold fundraising sales of food or beverages
that do not meet mandated school lunch nutritional standards
■ 3/25/15, #66, SB 85, revising the state law preempting gun-control ordinances to also apply to “pneumatic” guns, defined as
one shooting a “BB or pellet by spring, gas or air” (Y=C, N=L).
■ 4/16/15, #90, Sen. Coleman Young amendment to SB 248,
mandating that auto insurance companies cut their priced by at
least 5 percent (Y=L, N=C).
■ 4/16/15, #101, SB 248, replacing the Michigan Catastrophic
Claims Association (MCCA) with a new state authority that
would provide reinsurance to individual auto insurance companies for personal injury claim amounts that exceed $545,000
per incident (Y=C, N=L).
■ 5/5/15, #134, Sen. Hoon-Yung Hopgood amendment to SB
134, increasing foundation allowance grants by $80 to $150
per student, with the higher amount going to lower-spending
districts (Y=L, N=C).
■ 5/5/15, #137, Sen. Vincent Gregory amendment to SB 133,
adding $1.3 million to Department of Corrections (DOC) prisoner rehabilitation programs (Y=C, N=L).
■ 5/7/14, #160, HB 4135, requiring that, if a someone assigned
to “youthful training status” (which provides a mechanism for
offenses not appearing on his/her permanent record) is convicted of a serious felony listed in the bill while in this program,
the “trainee” status must be revoked and the previous crime
would also go on his/her record (Y=C, N=L).
■ 5/12/15, #161, HB 4038, allowing landlords to send eviction notices to tenants by email, if the lease provides for such (Y=C, N=L).
■ 5/14/15, #173, SB 3, repealing the state “prevailing wage” law,
Copyright 2015 by Inside Michigan Politics (ISSN 1052-8857), which is published 24 times a year for $180 per annum by Inside Michigan Politics, 2062 Banyon Trail, East Lansing, MI 48823. Two years, $310.
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whereby the Licensing and Regulatory Affairs’ (LARA) Wage
and Hour Division establishes wage and fringe benefit rates to
be paid to construction workers on state projects (Y=C, N=L).
5/20/15, #207, Sen. Margaret O'Brien amendment to SB
103, allowing teachers to only be rated on student test results
if three years of testing data are available (Y=L, N=C)
5/20/15, #210, Sen. David Knezek amendment to SB 103,
adding an additional level of appeal for teachers who don't like
the "ineffective" evaluation rating they've been given (Y=L, N=C).
5/26/15 # 219, HB 4175, making it more difficult to sue equine
stables and even organizers for injury, death or property damage resulting from the inherent risk of an equine activity, by allowing such suits only for “willful and wanton disregard” for
participants’ safety (Y=C, N=L).
5/26/15, #222, HB 4041, withholding welfare benefits from a
household with children persistently truant from school (Y=C,
5/27/15, #245 Sen. Steve Bieda amendment to HB 4467,
prohibiting housing Michigan prisoners at the privately owned
prison (Y=L, N=C).
6/10/15, #283, HB 4190, HB 4190, prohibiting a state agency
from taking an “adverse action” against an adoption agency
that refuses to participate in an adoption or placement that violates its “religious or moral convictions” (Y=C, N=L).
6/11/15, #286, SB 211, requiring public school boards to permit instruction and reading of “America's founding documents”
including those related to the country’s “representative form
of limited government, the Bill of Rights, our free-market economic system, and patriotism” (Y=C, N=L).
6/17/15, #297, HB 4052, prohibiting local governments, public
schools, state colleges and universities, and other governmental
authorities from enacting mandatory wage, benefit, leave time,
apprenticeship and other requirements on employers which exceed those required by state or federal law (Y=C, N=L).
6/18/15, #304, HB 4122, repealing film incentives as of October 2016 (Y=C, N=L).
6/18/15, #311, HB 4226, increasing the number of areas from
three to nine in which “certified technology parks” (previously
dubbed “smart zones”) are allowed to expand by creating “satellite zones” and collecting the extra local property tax revenue
that might result from property tax increases generated by their
selected subsidies and projects (Y=L, N=C).
9/10/15, #354, SB 384, giving the Department of Health and
Human Services (DHHS) the authority to appoint agents that
would have similar powers to police officers with limited arrest
powers for investigating welfare fraud (Y=C, N=L).
9/17/15, #370, SB 306, authorizing Michigan’s membership in
a “Compact for a Balanced Budget,” which would apply to Congress to call a convention for ratifying the Balanced Budget
Amendment (BBA) when at least three-fourths of states became
members of said compact (Y=C, N=L).
10/1/15, #391, Sen. Morris Hood amendment to SB 500, increasing maximum time on unemployment from 20 weeks to
26 weeks and indexing benefits to inflation (Y=L, N=C).
10/14/15, #433, Senate Resolution 104, urging Congress to reject the Iran Treaty (Y=C, N=L).
11/3/15, #476, HB 4738, increasing automobile gas and diesel
tax to 26.3 cents per gallon (Y=L, N=C).
11/10/15, #507, SB 280, prohibiting state and local governments, and public schools, from entering into bargaining agreements allowing union officials to be paid while doing union work
11/10/15, #531, SB 516, revising the“gun-free zone” provision
of the concealed pistol permit law to exempt active and retired
corrections, probation and parole officers who have concealed
pistol licenses from restrictions (Y=C, N=L).
• In the Nov. 23, 2015, edition, the name of Rep. Eric
Leutheuser (R. Hillsdale) was listed incorrectly.
Rebekah Warren (D-Ann Arbor) .....................................93.3%
(28 of 30, one missed) — Most Liberal
Vince Gregory (D-Southfield) ..........................................90.3%
(28 of 31)
• Morris Hood III (D-Detroit) and
Coleman Young II (D-Detroit) ......................................90.0%
(27 of 30, one missed)
Bert Johnson (D-Highland Park) .....................................89.3%
(25 of 28, three missed)
Hoon-Yung Hopgood (D-Taylor) .....................................86.7%
(26 of 30, one missed)
Jim Ananich (D-Flint) ......................................................81.5%
(22 of 27, four missed)
Curtis Hertel Jr. (D-E. Lansing) ......................................80.7%
(25 of 31)
Steve Bieda (D-Warren) ..................................................76.7%
(23 of 30, one missed)
David Knezek (D-Dearborn Heights) ................................74.2%
(23 of 31)
Virgil Smith (D-Detroit) ..................................................70.4%
(19 of 27, four missed)
Tory Rocca (R-Sterling Heights) .......................................51.6%
(16 of 31)
Dale Zorn (R-Ida) ............................................................32.3%
(10 of 31)
Mike Nofs (R-Battle Creek) ..............................................31.0%
(9 of 29, two missed)
Tom Casperson (R-Escanaba) .........................................26.7%
(8 of 30, one missed)
Rick Jones (R-Grand Ledge) ...........................................25.8%
(8 of 31)
Margaret O’Brien (R-Portage) ........................................22.6%
(7 of 31)
• Judy Emmons (R-Sheridan)
Ken Horn (R-Frankenmuth) ..........................................19.4%
(6 of 31)
• Mike Kowall (R-White Lake),
Wayne Schmidt (R-Traverse City) and
Tonya Schuitmaker (R-Lawton) ..................................16.1%
(5 of 31)
• Mike Green (R-Mayville) and
Goeff Hansen (R-Hart) ................................................13.3%
(4 of 30, one missed)
• Marty Knollenberg (R-Troy),
Peter MacGregor (R-Rockford) and
Dave Robertson (R-Grand Blanc) ................................12.9%
(4 of 31)
• Darwin Booher (R-Evart),
Jim Marleau (R-Lake Orion),
Arlan Meekhof (R-West Olive,
Phil Pavlov (R-St. Clare),
Mike Shirkey (R-Clarklake), and
Jim Stamas (R-Midland) .................................................9.7%
(3 of 31)
Jack Brandenburg (R-Harrison Twp.) ...............................6.7%
(2 of 30, one missed)
• Dave Hildenbrand (R-Lowell) and
John Proos (R-St. Joseph) .............................................6.5%
(2 of 31)
Pat Colbeck (R-Canton) ....................................................3.2%
(1 of 31)
Joe Hune (R-Hamburg) ........................................................0%
(0 of 31) — Most Conservative
MICHIGAN LEGISLATORS: PRAY TELL
Does religious affiliation affect the way politicians vote?
It can, although the state Capitol dynamics have changed somewhat
over the course of the past two decades.
At crunch time, however, the Roman Catholic contingent is as large
as it’s been in two decades --- since the 87th Legislature (1993-94) when
it stood at 52. By contrast, there were 46 RCs in the last Legislature,
44 in the one before that, and as few at 37 in the 92nd Legislature during 2003-04. You have to go farther back to the 86th at the start of the
’90s, to find RC numbers appreciably larger (55) than what’s in place
in the current bodies.
Then and now, there were, in each session, at least three times the
number of Catholic legislators as the next-most-numerous specific sects.
This session, that would be the Baptists, who boast 17 members.
Representation by most other denominations in the current 98th
Legislature is pretty even with what it’s been throughout the last decade,
although there have been some ups and downs.
Examples would include the sect that was runner-up to the Catholics
in the 97th Legislature, the United Methodists, who are in third place
this time. The Baptists were in third place in the last two legislatures,
but they were runner-ups to the the RCs in the 94th and 95th legislatures. And now they have reclaimed their spot as the most populous
Episcopalians have decreased, too — they’ve gone from 11 in both
the 94th and 95th legislatures down to five in the 96th. There have
been only three in the past two sessions. Presbyterians, Lutherans and
Jews have also lost a little ground.
As with factors like race, gender and income, the 98th Legislature
isn’t exactly a mirror image of Michigan in terms of religion. A 2014
Pew Research survey found 70% were Christian. But of that, just 18%
were Catholic, as opposed to 34% in the Legislature.
In Pew’s survey, evangelical Protestants were 25%, mainline Protestants were 18% and historically black Protestants were 8%. Almost onequarter were unaffiliated (i.e. “religious nones”) which are almost
nonexistent in the Legislature. And 5% were other religions, with Jews,
Muslims and Buddhists at 1% apiece.
As usual, IMP, had some difficulty compiling its tabulation --- in most
instances because politicians and/or their protective staffs were loathe
to be pinned down, preferring to give the impression that the legislator
could be affiliated with any number of faiths with whose parishioners
s/he might actually worship over a period of time.
Here is IMP’s list of the affiliations of all 145 members in the 98th
Legislature (there are three vacancies):
African Methodist Episcopal (1): Virgil Smith (D-Detroit).
Assembly of God (1): Tom Casperson (R-Escanaba).
Baptist (2): Mike Green (R-Mayville) and Bert Johnson (D-Highland Park).
Christian/Protestant [non-denominational or unaffiliated]: (5) Darwin
Booher (R-Evart); Patrick Colbeck (R-Canton); Hoon-Yung Hopgood (D-Taylor); Margaret O’Brien (R-Portage); and Wayne
Schmidt (R-Traverse City).
Christian Reformed: (1) Arlan Meekhof (R-West Olive).
Church of God in Christ: (1) Coleman Young II (D-Detroit).
Congregational: (1) Goeff Hansen (R-Hart).
Episcopalian: (2) Tonya Schuitmaker (R-Lawton) and Rebekah Warren
Free Methodist: (1) Mike Shirkey (R-Clarklake).
Lutheran: (2) Judy Emmons (R-Sheridan) and Jim Stamas (R-Midland).
Methodist: (4) Vincent Gregory (D-Southfield); Rick Jones (R-Grand
Ledge); Peter MacGregor (R-Rockford); and Dale Zorn (R-Ida).
Our Lady of Lebanon: (1) Jim Ananich (D-Flint).
Presbyterian: (1) Dave Robertson (R-Grand Blanc).
Roman Catholic: (15) Steve Bieda (D-Warren); Jack Brandenburg (RHarrison Twp.); Curtis Hertel Jr. (D-East Lansing); David Hildenbrand (R-Lowell); Morris Hood III (D-Detroit); Ken Horn
(R-Frankenmuth); Joe Hune (R-Hamburg); David Knezek (D-Dearborn Heights); Marty Knollenberg (R-Troy); Mike Kowall (R-White
Lake); Jim Marleau (R-Lake Orion); Mike Nofs (R-Battle Creek); Phil
Pavlov (R-St. Clair); John Proos (R-St. Joseph); and Tory Rocca (RSterling Heights).
Agnostic (1): Jeff Irwin (D-Ann Arbor).
Assembly of God (1): Nancy Jenkins (R-Clayton).
Baptist (14): Wendell Byrd (D-Detroit); Lee Chatfield (R-Levering); Tristan Cole (R-Mancelona); Fred Durhal III (D-Detroit); Sherry GayDagnogo (D-Detroit); Gary Glenn (R-Midland); Tom Hooker
(R-Byron Center); Ed McBroom (R-Vulcan); Sheldon Neeley (DFlint); David Rutledge (D-Ypsilanti); Jason Sheppard (R-Temperance); Charles Smiley (D-Burton); Pat Somerville (R-New Boston);
and Alberta Tinsley-Talabi (D-Detroit).
Bible Church (1): Lisa Posthumus Lyons (R-Alto).
Christian/Protestant [non-denominational or unaffiliated] (8): LaTanya
Garrett (D-Detroit); Robert Kosowski (D-Westland); Peter Pettalia
(R-Presque Isle); Phil Phelps (D-Flushing); Brett Roberts (R-Charlotte); Jim Runestad (R-White Lake); Lana Theis (R-Brighton); and
Jim Townsend (D-Royal Oak).
Christian Reformed (2): Winnie Brinks (D-Grand Rapids) and Roger Victory (R-Hudsonville).
Church of the Nazarene (3): Ned Canfield (R-Sebewaing); Ben Glardon
(R-Owosso); and Joe Graves (R-Argentine).
(Congregational) United Church of Christ (2): Jon Hoadley (D-Kalamazoo)
and Leslie Love (D-Detroit).
Eastern Rite (Chaldean) Catholic (1): Klint Kesto (R-Commerce Twp.).
Episcopalian (1): Pam Faris (D-Clio).
Evangelical Free (1): Dave Pagel (R-Berrien Springs).
First Church of God (1): Al Pscholka (R-Stevensville).
Grace Christian Fellowship (1): Aaron Miller (R-Sturgis).
Greek (Eastern) Orthodox (2): Chris Afendoulis (R-Grand Rapids) and
Jim Tedder (R-Clarkston).
Jewish (4): Michael Callton (R-Nashville); Jeremy Moss (D-Southfield);
Andy Schor (D-Lansing); and Robert Wittenberg (D-Oak Park).
Lutheran (4): Jeff Farrington (R-Utica); Kurt Heise (R-Plymouth); Holly
Hughes (R-Montague); and Henry Vaupel (R-Fowlerville).
Mennonite (1): Aric Nesbitt (R-Lawton).
(United) Methodist (9): Jon Bumstead (R-Newaygo); John Chirkun (D-Roseville); Kathy Crawford (R-Novi); Gretchen Driskell (D-Saline); Bradford Jacobsen (R-Oxford); Rick Outman (R-Six Lakes); Kristy Pagan
(D-Canton); Earl Poleski (R-Jackson); and Adam Zemke (D-Ann Arbor).
Missionary Church (1): Paul Muxlow (R-Brown City).
Mormon (1): Joel Johnson (R-Clare).
Pentecostal (1): Brian Banks (D-Detroit).
Presbyterian (2): Tim Greimel (D-Auburn Hills) and John Kivela (D-Marquette).
Reformed Church in America (4): Dave Maturen (R-Portage); Amanda
Price (R-Holland); Rob VerHeulen (R-Walker); and Ken Yonker (RCaledonia).
Roman Catholic (35): Tom Barrett (R-Potterville); John Bizon (R-Battle
Creek); Charles Brunner (D-Bay City); Paul Clemente (D-Lincoln
Park); Tom Cochran (D-Mason); Kevin Cotter (R-Mt. Pleasant);
Laura Cox (R-Livonia); George Darany (D-Dearborn); Scott
Dianda (D-Calumet); Anthony Forlini (R-Harrison Twp.); Ray Franz
(R-Onekama); Daniela Garcia (R-Holland); Erika Geiss (D-Taylor);
Vanessa Guerra (D-Saginaw); Ken Goike (R-Ray Twp.); Christine
Greig (D-Northville); Martin Howrylak (R-Troy); Brandt Iden (R-Oshtemo); Larry Inman (R-Traverse City); Tim Kelly (R-Saginaw); Marilyn Lane (D-Fraser); Andrea LaFontaine (R-Columbus Twp.); Dan
Lauwers (R-Brockway); Bill LaVoy (D-Monroe); Eric Leutheuser (RHillsdale); Frank Liberati (D-Allen Park); Peter Lucido (R-Shelby
Twp.); Mike McCready (R-Birmingham); Derek Miller (D-Warren);
Julie Plawecki (D-Dearborn Heights); Rose Mary Robinson (D-Detroit); Phil Potvin (R-Cadillac); Bruce Rendon (R-Lake City); Harvey
Santana (D-Detroit); and Michael Webber (R-Rochester Hills).
Sweet Saviour Ministries Christian Development Center (1) Tom Leonard
Unaffiliated [with anything] (3) Sarah Roberts (D-St. Clair Shores); Sam
Singh (D-East Lansing); and Henry Yanez (D-Sterling Heights).
Unitarian Universalist (2): Stephanie Chang (D-Detroit) and Marcia
Among all 145 legislators (there are three vacancies) in the combined House and Senate, members of various Protestant denominations would seem to total just under 100, including an increasing
number of fundamentalist churches that have constituted the biggest
growth in organized religion nationally over the past couple of
The Protestants’ ranks are likely to swell slightly after special elections are held March 8 to fill vacancies in the 75th, 80th and 82nd
House districts. The strong favorites in those contests are Grand
Rapids Democrat David LaGrand in the 75th (he is Christian Reformed); Republican Mary Whiteford of Casco Twp. in the 80th
(she considers herself a non-denominational, unaffiliated
Christian/Protestant); and Lapeer County Republican Gary Howell
in the 82nd (he’s a Methodist).
If Roman Catholics are added together with Protestant sects that
are “pro-life” on a variety of social issues, it’s safe to conclude that
well over half the 98th membership is composed of legislators whose
churches are aligned with most of Right to Life of Michigan’s agenda
(regardless of the professed belief of the individual members).
That — and the fact that pro-life Republicans hold the majorities
in both chambers — accounts for the conservative tilt of lawmakers
on most social/cultural issues, compared with the general population.
That’s certainly the case on LGBT issues.
The pro-life cast of the current Legislature (and its predecessor) is
somewhat more important today that it was for the eight years following the 2002 election, when a pro-choice Democrat, Jennifer
Granholm (who was a Roman Catholic), was in the governor’s
For most of the 21st century, the question was always whether
RTL had the two-thirds majority in each chamber necessary to override Granhom’s veto of pro-life legislation (it didn’t in 2004, for example, when Granholm axed a bill banning so-called “partial-birth”
For the past five years, however, the governor has been a Republican, Rick Snyder, who is a Presbyterian, a Protestant denomination whose member’ views on abortion are all over the map, just like
Snyder’s. He claims he’s pro-life, but he supports embryonic stem
And to RTL, he’s been somewhat suspect — that’s why the group
endorsed Mike Cox in the 2010 GOP gubernatorial primary. RTL
can’t be sure what Snyder will do on any given measure now, which
is why it bypassed him on the so-called “rape insurance” petition drive
that only required legislative approval.
Snyder’s views also haven’t been totally in accord with those of the
Michigan Catholic Conference. For example, the MCC wanted the
Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC), which gives tax breaks to the working poor, to be spared in Snyder’s FY 2012 and ‘13 budgets.
Snyder, however, called for its elimination. In the end, the tax break
wasn’t scuttled, but it was significantly pared back. So both RTL and
the MCC continue to be uneasy with Snyder’s policy objectives, for
slightly different reasons.
Whether or not religion really plays that big a part in what will be
decided in the current Legislature’s remaining year. Here are IMP’s
Reformed Church of America
Church of the Nazarene
Assembly of God
Greek (Eastern) Orthodox
African Methodist Episcopal
Church of God in Christ
Eastern Rite Catholic
First Church of God
Grace Christian Fellowship
Our Lady of Lebanon
Sweet Savior Ministries
*Three vacancies, in the House’s 75th, 80th, and 82nd districts,
that will be filled in a March 8, 2016, special general election.
THEY SAID IT
■ “So let each one give as he purposes in his heart, not grudgingly
or of necessity, for God loves a cheerful giver.” — Attorney General
Bill Schuette, quoting from 2 Corinthians 9:7 at the state's
25th Annual “Harvest Gathering” at the Country Club of Lansing. Launched by Schuette and his wife, Cynthia Schuette, in
the first year of the administration of Gov. John Engler, the
anti-hunger drive has raised nearly $10 million and almost 10
million pounds of food (enough for more than 18 million emergency meals). Cynthia came up with the idea when the now-AG
was director of the state Dept. of Agriculture. This year's effort
brought in $384,193 and 291,400 pounds of edibles. The bounty
will be distributed by the Food Bank Council of Michigan to an
array of food pantries, soup kitchens and shelters in all of Michigan's 83 counties (11/19).
■ "It's time to stand up to the NRA's bullshit and begin to restore some
sanity. No gun sales to people on the terror watch list and no more
sales of assault weapons; and of course, universal background checks
on ALL gun sales. Politicians who disagree must go." — Lansing's
Virg Bernero, a.k.a. "America's Angriest Mayor" (Facebook,12/3).
■ "Guys, you don't have to keep tweeting at me to oppose #CISA.
I'm like totes against unconstitutional surveillance." — U.S. Rep.
Justin Amash (R-Cascade Twp.), a longtime civil liberties advocate, colorfully critiquing the Cybersecurity Information Sharing
Act being debated in Congress (Twitter, 12/7).
■ "Articulate and confident, he represents a new breed of Republican leader who can unite our party and win both the primary and
general elections. Marco Rubio’s life story is one that can inspire
all Americans. More importantly, Marco understands the new security threats facing America." — Walbridge CEO John Rakolta, a
key part of Mitt Romney's Michigan fundraising operation, endorsing the Florida U.S. senator (Politico, 11/30).