May 9, 2008
Republican lawmaker introduces resolution supporting Andy Dillon
Sane people of all political stripes continue to line up behind House Speaker Andy Dillon to denounce the ridiculous and illegal recall against him for his vote for the increase of the income tax - and the since repealed sales tax on some services - that avoided a government shutdown and helped balanced the state budget on Oct. 1.
Both the subscription only MIRS and Gongwer reported that Rep. Dick Ball, R-Bennington Twp, introduced House Resolution 358 Thursday that would "express the sense of the House that recalls should be based on specific misconduct, criminal activity, or abuse of office and should not be based on a single vote and to denounce the effort to recall Speaker Andy Dillon." That’s also what the majority of voters think, and most state newspapers have editorialized that position. Both nonpartisan groups, like the Michigan Townships Association, and more partisan groups, like the Michigan Chamber of Commerce, have also taken the same position.
Some of the political posturing by some other Republicans was laughable. Rep. Kevin Elsenheimer, R-Bellaire - who is running to be the minority leader or for the Michigan Court of Appeals, depending on what day it is – said, according to Gongwer, that the supporters of the resolution were “…engaging the chamber in a political issue.” What, the House of Representatives is a political organization that engages in politics? Why, I never.
Even more funny was the reaction of Republican Macomb County Commissioner Leon Drolet, who launched the illegal and unethical recall that used faked signatures, paid petition collectors who lied to get signatures and used out-of-district petition gathers to collect signatures. He said in MIRS that “he felt he could get some public relations traction just on the basis that the House was considering taking the resolution up.” With Drolet, that’s exactly what this witch-hunt is all about.
He also, of course, brought up Dillon’s long planned week of vacation with his family. Ironically, the bill that Republicans used to embarrass Dillon and illustrate the fact that he was gone, passed by a vote of 60-44 on Thursday. You will recall that on Wednesday, the Capital Outlay Budget – Senate Bill 511 – failed by just one vote. Drolet and company used that to try and say that if Dillon had been in the chamber it would have passed. They ignored, of course, that eight members were not at session yesterday and three Republicans did not even cast a vote in order to embarrass him.
Somebody better tell Elsenheimer about this politics thing in the chamber. I fail to see how introducing a bill or a resolution is political, but refusing to do what you were sent to Lansing to do is not political. To me, the actions by the three Republicans in refusing to vote might be more of a reason to recall a politician; for not doing what they were elected to do, instead of for doing what we sent them to do.
Gongwer also reported that the Department of State said on Thursday that it has conducted its initial review of the recall petition signatures found they have the required 8,724 signatures. Now if the SOS does its job properly, the fraud will begin to surface even more. The department will now proceed in matching the signatures to the qualified voter file to determine if there are enough to put the measure on the ballot.