(Crystal A. Proxmire, July 30, 2013)
Michigan Governor Rick Snyder was the keynote speaker of the 2013 Macomb County Republican Party Lincoln Dinner, held July 29 at the Best Western Sterling Inn. Dozens of protesters from the Tea Party gathered outside to encourage Snyder to stop supporting an extension of Medicaid in Michigan. Inside, Snyder spoke about improvements he’s seen to the Michigan economy, ideas he has for further growth and priorities for the state. Congressman Candice Miller, Secretary of State Ruth Johnson, Attorney General Bill Schuette and Supreme Court Justice David Viviano were also on hand to celebrate the GOP platform and rally the nearly 700 guests to be ready for the 2014 elections.
“If you look at personal income in the state, we’d dropped to 40th of the 50 states in per capita income. 40th. To give you a perspective, ten years earlier we were 17th. It was probably the largest single drop in income levels in the country,” Snyder said. He said that Michigan is reversing that trend. He also noted that Michigan lost population from 2000 to 2010. “When I ran it wasn’t about fixing Michigan, it was about reinventing Michigan.”
He said that “One of the toughest things I’ve had to do as Governor is going on right now – the bankruptcy of Detroit. I think it’s the right thing to do. …This isn’t about bailouts…[it’s] where we can see strategic investments, that can make an investment in turning Detroit around to make it a great city.”
Snyder said that for Michigan to make a comeback it needs to “create more and better jobs by letting free enterprise job creation work.” He also spoke about privatizing pre-school and fast-tracking kids through college. “We need to put less in the administration and more in the classroom. I look at the system not just as K-12, but I call it P-20,” he said “How do we move people from prenatal to lifelong learning? …If you have issues early on you may not be successful in K-12. ..We’re gonna get ’em into preschool in terms of giving them the option to find good private preschool, or an option that is right for them.”
He also said Michigan needs to “emphasize the gap between high school and college.”
“One program we passed in legislation and is still not being used enough is called dual-enrollment. …That’s the concept of going to high school and going to college at the same time. …If you can finish one year in college while you are still in high school you’ve gotten a 25% discount if you’re going off to a university. …For kids that are ready to take those courses, we shouldn’t hold them back. Let kids go as fast as they can.”
Nationally Snyder said there are three things for the folks in Washington to focus on – getting the budget done, tax reform and getting a payment plan in place for the national debt. He emphasized his oft-repeated idea that “the point of government is to treat you like a customer and give you good customer service and make you feel good that you’re getting the services you deserve for the investment you’re making”
In a press conference after the speech, Snyder was asked if the state would reconsider it’s stance on equality and diversity to welcome more gay (LGBT) families into the state. “Again that’s an issue that the legislature could have a rational discussion about at some point in the future. And if they want to do that, I think that’s a fine act to take.”
Candice Miller spoke passionately about national issues including border security, de-funding Obamacare, taking power away from the IRS, and how “the United States Senate and the White House has targeted” her because of her views on immigration reform.
Justice Viviano spoke mainly about all the support he and other judges in his family have received from the Macomb County Republicans, and how he is ready to “criss-cross the state” to campaign to be elected into the seat which he was appointed to by Governor Snyder.
For more of the Republicans’ speeches, check out the videos below. To learn more about the Macomb County Republicans visit http://macombgop.com/.