MI Dem leader says party needs to coordinate efforts with Obama camp


Leading Democrats in the state say they are coordinating campaign efforts with President Barack Obama's team in Michigan. As Michigan Public Radio's Laura Weber reports, they hope the popularity of the president will help Democrats win back seats in the state House.

Democratic House Minority Leader Rick Hammel says he thinks there's a good chance his party could win enough seats in the House to take back control after the elections this November. Hammel says he thinks President Obama's popularity in Michigan, and his support of the auto industry will help bolster Democrats throughout the state.

"We've been talking a little bit with his campaign to find out how we can coordinate messages and opportunities, and I believe that will definitely help," he says.

In addition, Hammel thinks the unpopularity of Governor Rick Snyder and of policies approved by the Republican-dominated Legislature will also drive voters to the polls for Democrats.

But representatives for the state's Republican Party say President Obama has not been very popular in Michigan either. And they say Democrats attaching themselves to the president so early in the year shows Democrats in Michigan have no message of their own.

Hammel appeared on public television's "Off the Record." The program can be viewed at wkar.org.