In Michigan
5:15 pm
Wed December 7, 2011

Oakland County politics go statewide

LANSING, MI –

A fight over political power in Oakland County played out Wednesday before a legislative committee. Republicans want the Legislature to change the rules to let the GOP-controlled county commission re-draw its own districts. As we hear from Michigan Public Radio's Rick Pluta, the proposal was adopted by the House Government Operations Committee on a party-line vote.

The Republican proposal would shrink the size of the county commission. It would also shift the responsibility for drawing new districts from a bipartisan commission controlled by Democrats to the G-O-P controlled county commission.

State Representative Tom McMillan is a Republican from Oakland County.

"I appreciate that we're kind of taking the politics out of this and saving taxpayer dollars," he says. "It's just a phenomenal bill."

This is Oakland County Democratic Chair Frank Houston.

"We shouldn't be cheating democracy to score political points," he says.

He says if Republicans wanted to save taxpayers money, they should have called for these changes before the last election, before the apportionment committee adopted a new district map earlier this year, and before it was upheld in court. He says the Legislature should not meddle in local politics to benefit a particular political party.