Apr 22, 2009

Cropsey admits he sabotaged the workplace smoking ban in the conference committee

LANSING -- Sen. Alan Cropsey, R-DeWitt, admitted on the Senate floor Wednesday that the workplace smoking ban bill died in the conference committee last December because he refused to compromise.

As you recall, the House passed a version in December of 2007 that included exceptions for casinos and others, and the Senate passed a complete ban in May after intense pressure from non-smoking advocates finally forced a vote. A bipartisan, bicameral conference committee was then formed to work out the differences between the two versions, and it presents that compromise to their respective bodies for an up or down vote. A workable compromise was reached in December, but the three Republican members - who voted against the ban - refused to even consider it. Clearly, they had no intention of trying to work out a compromise, and Cropsey confirmed that Wednesday.

“Now when it came to conference committee, the previous speaker was on the committee, I was on the committee, and I took the Senate version and said if we aren’t going to look at the property rights issues, if we are going to look at the public health issue, then let’s do what is right for public health and have the total ban on smoking, “ Cropsey said Wednesday. “You know, I was the only person on that conference committee who held tight to that position—the Senate position.”

In other words, Cropsey, who voted against Senate version he upheld, refused to compromise on a committee whose function it was to reach a compromise. Even though the majority of Michigan residents support a smoking ban, Senate Majority Leader Mike Bishop doesn’t, and that’s why he appointed two Republican members to the committee who voted against the bill.

The debate was spurred by plans by Sen. Tupac Hunter, D-Detroit, to introduce a bill to place a smoking ban on the statewide ballot in 2010.

“As you all know, for the past 10 years, the Legislature has tried to pass a smoke-free worksite bill that will protect our citizens against harmful smoking-related diseases and lung cancer. Hunter said. “Unfortunately, these efforts have consistently failed, and due to disagreements regarding exemptions for casinos, bars, or restaurants, Michigan has yet to see a solution to this problem.”

The bill would do away with the requirements for collecting signatures. The cost to do that could be in the millions, and even though the majority of people support the ban, tobacco companies will spend millions to fight it.

“I don’t believe that we should pass watered-down legislation full of concessions that bend and bow to the influence of special interests,” Hunter said. “The only interest that I am concerned about today and as we move forward is that of the citizens we all serve across this great state of Michigan.”

The only problem is Bishop can kill this bill like he did the smoking ban bill. Only the intense pressure from the supporters of the ban forced him to allow a vote last year. In fact, I think it’s that pressure that led Hunter to introduce the bill. However, it will be interesting to see what excuse Bishop comes up with to kill this bill.

Sen. Ray Basham, D-Taylor, a co-sponsor of Hunter’s bill, as well as the smoking ban bill, Senate Bill 114, urged the Senate to hold hearings on both bills.

“For my entire legislative career, I have fought on behalf of a majority of Michigan’s citizens who feel Michigan workplaces should be smokefree, only to have my concerns fall on deaf ears or be drowned out by special interests,” he said. “I had hoped to protect the health of Michigan workers through state legislation, but I am confident that if we let the people of Michigan decide at the ballot box, we can finally move Michigan forward on this issue.”


Anon said...

His name is spelled Cropsey.

kevins said...

This issue could "move forward" if Democrats would merely agree to expand the ban to include casinos. That would force the Republicans to either vote for the ban or concede they were merely bluffing.

But Dems won't do that because, in your words, they have the mistaken belief that a smoking ban would decrease business.

But what you are really saying is that these Dems are willing to sacrifice lives in order to protect casino revenue...unless, of course, they don't believe in the threat of second-hand smoke. But you say the evidence is clear. So the Dems must be willing to let casino workers die. Wow...party of the working man and all that.

Communications guru said...

I see you’re back to using that name again, brett. This issue could "move forward" if Republicans were actually willing to compromise, which is the function of the conference committee.

Yes, the evidence is clear on secondhand smoke. Are you doubting that? Yes, Democratgs are the party of the working man. Detroit area lawmakers are under the mistaken belief that a smoking ban will hurt business and cost workers jobs. But here’s the thing, brett, the Speaker of the House allowed a vote on both the ban with exceptions and one without, Both received a majority of votes. The Senate only allowed a vote on a bill with no exceptions. The same day of Cropsey’s huge revelation, GOP Senator Pappageorge said on the Senate floor he wants an exception for so-called “cigar bars.” If that’s the case, then why wouldn’t the Republicans allow a vote on a bill with exceptions or be willing to compromise?

None of that matters because Bishop has no reason not to allow a vote on Hunter’s bill. I’m looking forward to the excuse he will come up with to kill it.

kevins said...

You want a compromise on death? How many deaths of casino workers are you willing to sacrifice?

You keep trying to dodge my point but in so doing, you confirm it.

Using your arguments:

1. Secondhand smoke causes deaths in the workplace.

2. Detroit Democrats are willing to let people die in order to protect casino profits.

Your point about them being "mistaken" is purposely muddying the water. What if they weren't mistaken? What if business would go down? Shouldn't the ban be passed anyway since second-hand smoke causes death?

But, no, the Detroit Democrats are willing to let casino workers die. If you don't think that's true, then you don't really believe that secondhand smoke kills. If secondhand smoke kills, then Dems are willing to let casino workers die.

With "friends" like the Democrats, the working man doesn't need any more enemies.

Communications guru said...

You’re joking, right brett? What I want is a workplace smoking ban in all workplaces, including bars, restaurants and casinos. What I don’t want is nothing, which is what we have now. All or nothing makes no sense to me. What I would accept over nothing is a ban that exempts casinos for the moment, and when the ban in Michigan’s bars and restaurants show the same results as the other 35 states that have a smoking ban; that business is not harmed and in some cases increases, all the exceptions will be done away with.

Better yet, how about the compromise Cropsey intentionally sabotaged that you refuse to address? Pass a complete ban with an exemption for casinos until 2011. By that time, the state would be renegotiating compacts with the Indian tribes and at that time the state would insist that the tribal casinos go smoke-free.

I’m not ducking anything, brett, and you have no points, I, and every scientist in the world, said secondhand smoke kills, and you are denying that. No, Detroit Democrats are willing to allow an exception in order to protect the jobs of casino workers. They are wrong.

They are mistaken, and I have presented the results from the 35 other states that prove they are wrong. You, as usual, conveniently continue to ignore that.

But you know what? None of that will matter after the Legislature approves Hunter’s bill.

kevins said...

You and I both know that the "wait to 2011" is a cynical ploy.

But if it's okay to kill casino workers until 2011, why not just put the entire smoking ban on hold until then: Then when the casinos accept the ban, it will be in force equally across the state.

And I'm tired of your constant lies. I'm not Brett. I don't know who he is. If you can prove I'm Brett, do it. If not, then you should spend your efforts proving that you are not a child molester.

Communications guru said...

Nor true, brett. "Wait to 2011" is not a cynical ploy; it’s a legitimate and workable compromise. The tide against smoking and support for indoor smoking bans is building as the evidence continues to pile up. It’s just a matter of time, so granting an exception until you can level the playing field in two years is a good compromise.

Like I said before, all or nothing makes no sense. The smoking ban has been on hold for years, and I can’t think of a reason to delay it. What really makes no sense is to not offer some protection because you can’t have it all.

If you’re not brett then don’t worry about it. I don’t know that you aren’t him, but what I do know is you are not who you say you are. Besides, it’s just my nickname for stubborn deceitful people who substitute personal attacks for debate. Have a nice day, brett.

Communications guru said...

This is pretty simple, brett. If you want to comment on here again without using deception and multiple, false screen names you know what you have to do.

Not Anonymous said...

Did the gestapo on this site just get rid of Kevins? If you can't beat them in debate, ban them from your site. How very Obamaian of you.

Communications guru said...

What the hell are you talking abut, brett? Stop playing stupid. You know you are not banned here. Go ahead and comment as kevins, no problem. But like I said, if you want to comment here under your original name you know what you have to do.

I don’t get the Gestapo or the Obamaian reference. Plus, you have never beat me a debate, under any screen name you are using.

Not Anonymous said...

You respond to Kevins, calling him Brett. Then you send another response to Kevins telling him if he wants to comment here he has to stop using multiple screen names and something else that only he knows. It sounds to me like you're not liking Kevins words and will block out his postings.

Now you call me Brett, you play ignorant about what you said to Kevins and tell me I know what I have to do to comment here. I'm apparently being edited out too. That's actually a good way to get consensus. Don't listen to anyone that disagrees and block them out.

I don't know what you're smoking over there, but I hear second hand smoke kills. You seem to be proving that it only makes you more spacey.

Communications guru said...

I didn’t send any response to kevins, brett. Kevins is welcome to comment here, so go ahead and do it. Stop lying, brett. Only one person is being edited, and that’s when you actually use the name brett. I am doing more than editing it, I’m deleting it. Once again, there is no problem with you doing that, but you know what you have to do first.

I guess when you can’t debate with facts, you have to play this stupid name game.

Not Anonymous said...

You're claiming that you deleted something that Brett wrote here? All I can do is sit here and shake my head. Someone with your lack of credibility actually expects us to believe you? Oh well, it's your sandbox so I guess you can play these games all you like. It must be depressing being you. I'll just do the same as Kevins did and suggest that you prove that Kevins and I are both Brett and that he wrote here. Talk about an impossible task.

Communications guru said...

Whatever you say, brett. Again, when you have no facts…

Not Anonymous said...

You got that right. I have no facts to back up that Brett wrote. Just like you have no facts to back up that Kevins is Brett and no facts to back up that I'm Brett. So I have to agree. When you have no facts......

Communications guru said...

When you have no facts… It must be tough for you, brett, to have to stoop to this.

kevins said...

Okay. So then I'll use the term Peddy File to refer to people who lie about me and my identity. I guess you can see the fairness in that.

But what I don't understand is why you support the mass killing of casino workers. Why is that a workable compromise? Why don't you and your Dem friends care about their welfare?

You dodge this issue because it is pretty uncomfortable. Many Democrats in the House think it a fair trade to trade casino lives for casino profits. You apparently agree.

Communications guru said...

You can do what you want, brett. But there is one small problem with your little plan: you are the only one who has lied about their identity.

Please stop playing dumb. I support a total smoking ban, but like I have said on this thread and on others many times, I will accept a partial ban now over nothing. I told you why it’s a workable compromise. If you want to continue to play stupid I guess there is nothing I can do about that. Here’s the thing, this is a bipartisan issue. Republicans and Democrats have voted both no and yes on both a total ban and one with exceptions.

I have not dodged anything, brett. Like I have said about 100 times, Detroit Democrats are under the mistaken belief that they are saving jobs. You obviously did not pay attention to the hearings on the bill. You can still read about it on the blog. The casino managers came in and talked about their multi-million dollar ventilation systems.

My position is pretty clear, and I have stated it numerous times, but I will do it one more time:
I support a total workplace smoking ban with no exceptions. However, I will accept a ban with exceptions until we can get a total ban in place after and it’s proven what 35 other states already know: a workplace smoking ban will not hurt sales, and in some cases it will increase it. What I don’t support is an all or nothing situation.

Is that clear enough?