Jul 28, 2010

Matty Moroun spreads cash to GOP allies

Republican billionaire benefactor and Ambassador Bridge owner Matty Moroun was busy distributing campaign cash to those willing to stand up for the billionaires and against 10,000 Michigan job and oppose the much-needed planned Detroit River International Crossing (DRIC) bridge over the Detroit River between Canada and Windsor.

In an effort to keep his monopoly on the 81-year old Ambassador Bridge, Moroun has spent lots of money on mostly Republican politicians that has earned him the loyalty like that of State Sen. Alan Cropsey, R-DeWitt. In a Detroit Free Press article called “Matty Moroun spends big on politicians: Dishes donations amid bridge fight,” it reports “Moroun and his family have doled out more than $110,000 in political contributions to Michigan candidates and committees since the beginning of the year.”

The article shows Morouns spent his money on most -- but not all -- of the gubernatorial candidates from both parties, as well as a lobbyist-run committee in Lansing that in turn contributes to Republican campaigns and causes. That’s one reason why not a single Michigan House Republicans voted yes on legislation clearing the way to build the DRIC bridge and authorize Michigan to enter into a public-private partnership with Canada and a private sector developer/financier to build the DRIC bridge, and why Senate Republicans are trying to kill it in committee.

According the Free Press, “the Morouns gave to all of the Republican gubernatorial candidates except former Gateway computers head Rick Snyder, who supports DRIC as long as Michigan taxpayers aren't on the hook. U.S. Rep. Pete Hoekstra -- who has since said he favors a public-private partnership to build a new span -- received four $3,400 contributions worth a total of $13,600 on May 5. Attorney General Mike Cox, who has more concerns about DRIC, received the same on June 25.”

But Mike Bouchard appears to be the new Cropsey, and he got the lion’s share of the Moroun cash.
“On top of the $10,200 he received on the last day of 2009, the Bouchard Victory Fund received $13,000 in May. And Capitol Affairs PAC, which is run by former Bouchard staffer and lobbyist Robert Kennedy, has received $35,000 from the Morouns since the middle of May. The PAC has contributed to several funds committed to electing Republicans, as well as giving about $34,000 to Bouchard's gubernatorial run and another $34,000 to a committee called Friends of Mike Bouchard -- which according to the filing is a fund for his re-election in 2012 as Oakland County sheriff.”

Most troubling, at least to me, was that the Morouns also gave “two $3,400 contributions to Lansing Mayor Virg Bernero, who is running for the Democratic nomination for governor. His rival, House Speaker Andy Dillon, didn't receive a donation. Dillon supports DRIC; Bernero opposes it.”

“Also of note, two of Lansing's most vocal opponents to DRIC received contributions:” Republican State Reps. David Agema of Grandville received $1,000, and Paul Opsommer of DeWitt got $1,500.


Not Anonymous said...

Where is the illegality? Are you really whining about someone doing something that is lawful?

Communications guru said...

I don’t recall saying it was illegal, anonymous coward. In fact, I didn’t. I guess in your world, quid pro quo is not a problem and pointing it out is whining. BTW, I didn’t write the Free Press story.

Again, anonymous coward, I’m still waiting for you to back up your outrageous lie that we were “nearly shoulder to shoulder once.”

Not Anonymous said...

Quid Pro Quo? So you have proof that Maroun giving money to Bouchard is in exchange for a going against the new bridge?

I see it as Maroun donating money to candidates, legislators and wannabe Governors that already support his position on the new bridge. You said it yourself. Bernero is against the new bridge, so it's only logical that Maroun would donate to his campaign.

It's no different than you knocking on doors for votes for your favorite socialist Democrats. Or are you suggesting that your door knocking is pre-arranged to be rewarded by those candidates if they win?

You'll have more credibility on your position when you start knocking on doors for Republican candidates as well as for Socialist Democrats.

Communications guru said...

No, it’s just a coincidence.

Once again, anonymous coward, there is no such thing as a Socialist Democrat in the United States, and that is just a false, Republican smear. I would never knock on doors for a Socialist, or a Socialist Democrat, considering there are none in the country, let alone the state. There is a huge difference between volunteering for a candidate you support and giving them thousands of dollars for their one position that happens to help you keep a monopoly that earns you some extra millions as the expense of 10,000 Michigan jobs. I have neither supported nor rejected a candidate for just one position.

I would also never support a Republican candidate because Republicans do not support Main Street, and they are the party of no: no to the solutions to the problems they caused, no ideas and no credibility. Once again, anonymous coward, there is no such thing as a Socialist Democrat in the United States, and that is just a false, Republican smear.

jkgopits said...

Moroun has done so many UNlawful/illegal things that to say he's done something lawful in donating to public officials brings to mind former Jesuit George Tyrrell's statement: "Accuse the Jesuits of having killed three men and a dog and they will triumphantly produce the dog alive."
Moroun has illegally taken over and fenced off public property for his own use without so much as a by-your-leave; he has erected a variety of buildings without applying for necessary legal permits (which is why a court ordered him to demolish the structures), and his public acts are just the tip of the iceberg -- his actions have adversely affected people's lives, health, and livelihoods, and have slummified and destroyed neighborhoods.

I guess we the public should be grateful that Moroun is able to produce the dog, even if he can't produce the three dead men.

Communications guru said...

I agree, and thanks for posting. You are correct about the illegal taking of Riverside Park and his illegally building of the duty few shop, and I have written about those things. But the fact is his “contributions” meet the letter of the law, if not the spirit. The fact is if you pledge to support his monopoly, you will get some cash for your campaign coffers; if you don’t, your opponents will. Or if you fight too hard for the people in your district and for the 10,000 Michigan jobs, he’ll launch a recall against you, like in the case of Rep. Rashida Tlaib.

jkgopits said...

Remember the "Rule of Thumb" -- the law that said it was all right to beat your life as long as the stick you beat her with was no thicker than your thumb?
Well, saying that Moroun's "contributions" meet the letter of the law if not the spirit" is like saying that a husband who beat his wife with a stick covered with thorns was within the letter of the law because the stick was not bigger than his thumb . . .
I pray repeatedly that Matty Moroun will be visited by the Spirit of Christmas Future, who will turn Matty into the most loved man in Michigan instead of the most hated.
But I'm not holding my breath.

Communications guru said...

I agree with you on the Ghost of Christmas Future, but the fact remains his "contributions" are legal. He has lots of very good lawyers to make sure.