Oct 12, 2009
Only debate for the 19th Senate seat goes forward even though Democratic candidate was in session
It’s a little sad that in the important race for the vacant 19th District seat in the Michigan Senate next month there is only one, solitary head to head debate, but that’s the case in this important race.
The Jackson County Chamber of Commerce hosted the only debate last Thursday, but Democratic candidate Rep. Martin Griffin, D-Jackson, was unable to attend because the House was in a marathon session that lasted until 11:50 p.m. The Speaker invoked a call of the House, which means the doors are locked and lawmakers cannot leave. Surprisingly, the debate wet forward anyway, giving the GOP candidate free publicity in a county where he is an unknown.
The GOP candidate took shots at Griffin, and he Griffin was unable to defend himself. Word is that he even tried to misrepresent Griffin’s vote on suspending an inflationary increase in the personal exemption on Michigan's income tax, saying every time you get a pay raise, the state gets a pay raise.
Not true. The House voted to freeze the personal income tax exemption at last year's level, and it would have increased the exception from $3,500 to $3,600 this year. Which means you will not get an extra $4.35 back next spring. It seems like $4.35 is a small price to pay for not throwing a monkey wrench in the gears of recovery by killing education and local communities.