politics and government

Politics & Government
11:28 am
Mon November 3, 2014

Clerks Byrum, Swope offer Election Day how-to

Months of campaign rhetoric come to a finale tomorrow, when  Michiganders will have their say at the polls. More than 4.7-million residents voted in the 2012 presidential election. This year’s contest is almost sure to draw fewer voters than two years ago.

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Politics & Government
11:27 am
Fri October 31, 2014

Month in Review: October's biggest news stories | WKAR

Credit Flickr - lehooper

The end of the month is here. Many of us in the media put Michigan’s mid-term election front and center during October. In four days, voters will finally decide who will be Governor and Lieutenant Governor, Attorney General and Secretary of State as well as who will succeed Michigan’s Carl Levin in the U.S. Senate and dozens of elected representatives at the state capitol.

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Politics & Government
11:14 am
Thu October 30, 2014

ELECTION 2014: Running as a third-party candidate

Terry Link is a Green Party candidate for the MSU Board of Trustees.
Credit http://gogreengolink.org/

Five days before a mid-term election, the media is full of political news involving  candidates, Democratic and Republican. In reality of course, the political landscape is more diverse. On Tuesday, Michigan voters will, for example, face at least five choices for Governor, including little known candidates from the Libertarian, Green and U.S. Taxpayers parties.

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Politics & Government
2:27 pm
Mon October 27, 2014

ELECTION 2014: 8th district Congressional candidate Republican Mike Bishop

Former state Senate majority leader Mike Bishop (R) hopes to replace Mike Rogers in Congress.
Credit www.electmikebishop.com/

Next Tuesday, Ingham county voters will help determine who will represent them in the U.S. Congress. Today and tomorrow, Current State visits with both of the major party candidates. Many observers favor Republican Mike Bishop to win in the 8th district, which comprises Ingham, Livingston and northern Oakland counties.

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Politics & Government
11:51 am
Fri October 24, 2014

ELECTION 2014: Republican AG Bill Schuette

Attorney General Bill Schuette
Credit http://www.billschuette.com/

In eleven days, Michigan voters will decide who will hold a handful of statewide offices, one of them, Attorney General. The race pits incumbent Republican Bill Schuette against Democratic challenger Mark Totten, who was a guest on Current State last week.

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Politics & Government
11:59 am
Thu October 23, 2014

ELECTION 2014: the race for two seats on the LCC board

The November election will result in adding two new members to the LCC Board of Trustees.
Credit lcc.edu

We have another look at the 2014 election today. This time, we consider the race for the Lansing Community College Board of Trustees. The board will have two newcomers next year.

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Politics & Government
12:26 pm
Wed October 22, 2014

Election 2014: Democratic 7th district candidate Pam Byrnes

Pam Byrnes is the Democratic nominee for Michigan's 7th congressional district. She's vying to unseat incumbent Republican Tim Walberg on November 4.
Credit Courtesy Pam Byrnes for Congress

Democrat Pam Byrnes is running to unseat Republican Tim Walberg in Michigan's 7th congressional district, which includes Eaton County.

Byrnes says she's running because Washington is broken and not serving Michigan families.

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Politics & Government
12:02 pm
Tue October 21, 2014

Disaffected veterans revive Whig party

The logo of the Modern Whig Party of America is an owl. The last known national meeting held by the Whigs was at the Owl Club in Brooklyn, New York in 1852.
Credit https://www.modernwhig.org

Election Day is now just two weeks off. Democrats and Republicans in Michigan and across the country are rallying their bases in a final push to get out the vote. Some voters, though, lean towards other political persuasions. There are a handful of smaller parties out there, like the Green Party and the Libertarians. One such party is blowing the dust off an old 19th century name and re-booting for a 21st century world.

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Politics & Government
9:14 am
Tue October 21, 2014

Lansing City Pulse's Mickey Hirten on local elections

Credit Flickr - Vox Efx

Election day is November 4th, and voters have lots of decisions to make. We have an important state senate race, several local state house races, and there are some important proposals to be decided.

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Politics & Government
1:25 pm
Thu October 16, 2014

ELECTION 2014: former MSU Trustees lend perspective on this year's race

The John A. Hannah Administration Building at MSU.
Credit Flickr - Alex

Voters in Michigan will elect members of the governing boards of Michigan State University, the University of Michigan and Wayne State University on November 4th. At MSU, incumbent democrats George Perles and Faylene Owen are running to keep their seats for another eight years. Republicans have nominated Melanie Foster and Jeff Sakwa; Foster was on the board for ten years, but lost her bid for re-election two years ago, and Sakwa also ran unsuccessfully in 2012. There also are candidates from the Green, Libertarian, U.S. Taxpayers and Natural Law parties on the ballot.

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Politics & Government
12:21 pm
Tue October 14, 2014

Job Discrimination, 4th Amendment highlight SCOTUS session

The U.S. Supreme Court building in Washington D.C.
Credit Flickr - David

The U.S. Supreme Court has begun its new session, and the cases the court has decided not to hear have been getting a lot of attention. The cases the court will hear are highlighted by issues related to unreasonable searches and seizures, and employment discrimination.

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Politics & Government
1:02 pm
Mon October 13, 2014

In only debate, Snyder, Schauer address familiar themes

"Monday Morning Quarterbacking" around the state involves more than football today. Michigan’s main Gubernatorial candidates squared off in a town hall style debate last night. Republican incumbent Rick Snyder and Democratic challenger Mark Schauer appeared before a TV studio audience of undecided voters in Detroit. Viewers in mid-Michigan saw the town hall on WKAR-TV.

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Politics & Government
1:00 pm
Mon October 13, 2014

State to make recommendations on juvenile justice reforms

Credit Flickr - Michael Coghlan

A lot has changed when it comes to the way we approach juvenile justice in the past couple of decades. In the mid 1990s, Michigan was one of a number of states that took a “tough on youth crime” stance, enacting laws that locked up more kids, even for non-violent crimes. Activists and academics alike challenged harsh sentences in favor of community based alternatives.

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Politics & Government
12:51 pm
Mon October 13, 2014

Local candidate forum gives voice to youth issues

Tonight, candidates for three state House and two state Senate districts will meet in Lansing for a candidates’ forum. These public events are fairly routine in the weeks leading up to a big election, but this one puts a twist on the usual format. Current State’s Kevin Lavery reports that the candidates who’ll face this group of questioners will not be getting their vote on November 4. This forum will be run by middle and high school students from grades 7 through 12.

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Politics & Government
11:11 am
Fri October 10, 2014

MI Justices Young, McCormack on courts' roles

The Michigan Supreme Court chambers
Credit http://courts.mi.gov/courts/

The seven justices of the Michigan Supreme Court are hearing oral arguments this week in cases ranging from public school employee pensions to rules governing damages awarded for personal injuries. Most of the time, the justices do their work away from the media spotlight, re-surfacing to announce their  decisions. Earlier this week, Current State spoke with two members of the High Court: Chief Justice Robert Young and Justice Bridget McCormack.

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Politics & Government
12:34 pm
Wed October 8, 2014

League of Women Voters continues historic role in urging turnout

The November 4 general election is now less than 30 days away. Candidates for a variety of offices are introducing themselves to potential constituents to make their case for why they deserve their vote. Tonight in East Lansing, eight city school board candidates will discuss their views at a public forum. The event is sponsored by the League of Women Voters of Michigan. It’s an organization that takes its voter education mission very seriously.

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Politics & Government
10:38 am
Mon October 6, 2014

Ahead of new cases, MI Supreme Court justices describe their roles

The Michigan Supreme Court chambers
Credit http://courts.mi.gov/courts/

Every year, October is when the state’s highest court, the Michigan Supreme Court, begins hearing oral arguments. That process is set to start tomorrow at the State Capitol building.

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Politics & Government
11:20 am
Tue September 30, 2014

Month in Review: September's biggest news stories | WKAR

Credit Flickr - lehooper

Rick Pluta of the Michigan Public Radio Network revisits several of September's biggest Michigan news stories with state capitol reporters Jonathan Oosting of MLive and Inside Michigan Politics publisher Susan Demas.

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Politics & Government
12:27 pm
Wed September 24, 2014

Local chemical castration case raises ethical, medical issues

Ingham County Circuit Court Judge Rosemarie Aquilina
Credit http://cc.ingham.org/

In the last thirty years, a Lansing resident by the name of David Lee Arnold has been convicted of indecent exposure 17 times, that’s according to the Lansing State Journal. Today, Arnold will appear in Ingham County Circuit Court to receive his sentencing for exposing his genitals at three different coffee shops in East Lansing and Meridian Township since 2013. Current State has learned that it’s expected that part of his sentencing agreement with Judge Rosemarie Aquilina today will include the requirement that Arnold must be injected with a medication called Depo-Lupron. Both Arnold’s attorney and the Ingham County Prosecutor’s office declined to comment.

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Politics & Government
12:50 pm
Thu September 18, 2014

More questions about Aramark contract after hearing, arrest

Aramark Logo
Credit Aramark

There’s been more controversy this week involving Aramark. That’s the beleaguered food service company contracted to serve Michigan prisons. Yesterday at a meeting of the state civil service commission, one member said he felt mislead when told of a $98,000 dollar fine against the company that had actually been dropped.

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Economy
12:37 pm
Thu September 18, 2014

The numbers behind Michigan's incomplete comeback

Credit michigan.gov

Are we truly a Comeback State? Just how much can a governor influence the economy? The Citizens Research Council, an independent, non-partisan research organization that analyzes public policy questions, recently analyzed data to try to answer these questions.

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Politics & Government
12:30 pm
Thu September 18, 2014

Local firefighters train for difficult rescues

Firefighters must sometimes rescue victims trapped in confined spaces, like underground equipment rooms.
Kevin Lavery/WKAR

A number of firefighting crews have been camped out along a main road at Michigan State University for the last couple of days. They’ve been taking part in an annual training exercise to learn how to rescue victims trapped in confined spaces. Current State’s Kevin Lavery reports that it turns out MSU has an ideal spot for this type of instruction.

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Politics & Government
1:36 pm
Wed September 17, 2014

Ingham judge spotlights flaws, illegality in court funding

Thomas Boyd, chief judge, Ingham County 55th District Court
Credit http://dc.ingham.org/

Michigan courts, especially District Courts, assess criminal defendants all sorts of fines and fees. This revenue is crucial for cities and counties, and these fines and fees vary widely across Michigan. Ingham County relies on them for $800,000 of its annual budget. The District Court in East Lansing, according to city budget numbers, has netted the city $3-million a year for the past three years. It’s one of the only departments that actually makes money for the city.

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Politics & Government
11:28 am
Tue September 16, 2014

Land campaign ducks MSU student debate request

Terri Lynn Land in one of her TV ads.
Credit TV Campaign Ad

Where in Michigan is Terri Lynn Land? With the November election fast approaching for Michigan’s first open Senate seat in 20 years, many are wondering where the GOP candidate has been. She’s taken heat for not publicizing her campaign schedule, for avoiding the media, and for refusing to debate her Democratic challenger, Congressman Gary Peters.

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Politics & Government
12:08 pm
Thu September 11, 2014

Outgoing state health leader reflects on eventful career

Credit www.michigan.gov/mdch

James Haveman has enjoyed a long career in public health in Michigan, including several in key leadership positions. Twice the director of the Michigan Department of Community Health, Haveman’s last day in that position is next Monday.

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Politics & Government
1:17 pm
Mon September 8, 2014

Lansing activists spur dialogue on racism, gun violence

Lansing residents march along Holmes Street to call attention to recent shootings in the city. The activists were also protesting police brutality. Organizers will host a community forum on these issues tonight at 7 p.m. at Letts Community Center in Lansing.
Credit Kevin Lavery/WKAR

Tomorrow marks one month since the death of Michael Brown, the unarmed African-American teenager shot by a white police officer in Ferguson, Missouri. The event sparked protests and violent clashes in Ferguson on a level seldom seen since the Civil Rights Era of the 1960’s. The incident also spurred positive conversations and peaceful activism across the country, including Lansing. On Saturday, a few dozen people gathered on the city’s southwest side for a peace march.

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Politics & Government
11:46 am
Thu August 28, 2014

Month in Review: August's biggest news stories | WKAR

Credit Flickr - lehooper

With August just about behind us, Current State takes a look back at Michigan’s biggest statewide stories with our monthly reporter roundtable.

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Politics & Government
11:54 am
Wed July 2, 2014

State Rep pushes corrections reform, prisoner rehab

Rep Haveman says that locking people up without concern for their rehabilitation is one of the biggest issues in the corrections system.
Credit Flickr - Todd Ehlers

In a recent op-ed, Republican State Representative Joe Haveman of Holland describes coming to Lansing five years ago to advance principles of limited government and restrained spending. He goes on to describe how his commitment to those principles unexpectedly led him to advocate reforms to Michigan’s $2 billion a year correctional system.

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Politics & Government
12:18 pm
Tue July 1, 2014

Cooley Law professor breaks down Hobby Lobby ruling

Schindler says the ruling may have some unanticipated consequences in the future.
Credit Flickr - American Life League

The Supreme Court of the United States ruled yesterday that the craft company Hobby Lobby can be exempted from paying for certain types of employee birth control.

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Politics & Government
11:44 am
Mon June 30, 2014

Month in Review: June's biggest news stories

Credit Flickr - lehooper

June has come and just about gone. The Governor signed budgets this month, though not for a comprehensive road funding package as many had hoped. Primary candidates traded jabs, and the Detroit Free Press shined an intense light on the state’s charter schools and it has generated a lot of discussion.

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