Michigan Miracle Lost
It seems all the good news that poured out of Governor Rick Snyder’s office during his first term has fully evaporated. The ‘MoJo’ the One Tough Nerd used to carry his election not once but twice has left the building. From where I stand I think it was a one-two punch that crippled the Governor.
First the Gas Tax fiasco took its toll on his administration. After Michigan voters roundly rejected the idea of increasing taxes, state Republicans did it anyway. You may remember voters turned the idea down with better than 80% saying no. It was the biggest blowout of any political position I can remember during my lifetime. So when the tax was put in anyway it really made people angry. When they go the gas pump starting in January, I am thinking the anger is going to get worse.
The second blow to Snyder is of course the ongoing mess in Flint. The Governor has been blamed for just about everything on this one and even though much of the criticism isn’t fair, he is still the one stuck with the image of hating kids and letting water be poisoned for political reasons. You and I both know that is just silly but the Governor has not done a good job cleaning up his image on this one.
With that in mind the next 2 years are going to be long and lonely for Governor Snyder I believe. He is essentially a 2-year lame duck with little hope of climbing out of the basement. He just isn’t well enough liked by any large group of people to build the kind of political capital it would take to make major policy initiatives stick.
Of course there is always the possibility that something happens that pushes him back to his feet and restores the long lost luster to his image but I wouldn’t be waiting around or counting on that to happen. As they say; it is lonely at the top.