Nothing I've ever read about Rick Snyder, the Republican governor of Michigan, has persuaded me that he acts and votes in the interest of his constituents. Not, maybe, until today.
In what counts as a profile in courage these days, a Republican governor has vetoed large parts of a package of measures that would have made it harder for minorities and the poor to vote.
Michigan governor Rick Snyder said he won't sign a bill drawn up by GOP lawmakers which would have required a photo I.D. for first-time registration, or to get an absentee ballot. Snyder said he “appreciates the issue of ensuring voters are eligible and U.S. citizens, however this legislation could create voter confusion among absentee voters.”
Snyder also rejected related GOP-backed measures that would have required voters to check a box affirming their citizenship, and that would have made it harder for voter registration groups to operate in the state. ...MSNBC
This is Rick Snyder, not Rick Scott. It's possible he's seen the reaction to Scott's voter suppression efforts and hasn't liked it. It's possible that, in the wake of the Supreme Court decision and the shift in political winds in favor of Democrats, he's feeling a little political chill...
... In the end, Rick Snyder is just another Republican who has a lot to worry about and a lot to answer for. Check out the Michigan governor's actions recently. He signed into law, in January, a measure that allows him to simply take over Michigan towns he wants to take over for any reason.
One of those towns is Benton Harbor -- on the lake, of course -- a town of largely low income, African American families. Benton Harbor is blessed with a lovely chunk of beachland given to the town some years back, to be used as a park, a facility particularly for use by children.
Development businesses have had their eyes on that land but the leaders of Benton Harbor weren't about to give it away or sell it for development. But now, thanks to Rick Snyder, Benton Harbor is run by an "Emergency Manager," Joe Harris. Joe Harris doesn't pay any obeisance to democracy. Hell no! What Joe Harris decrees is the law.
In April the Benton Harbor EM, Joe Harris, decreed: “Absent prior express written authorization and approval by the Emergency Manager”—himself—“no City Board, Commission or Authority shall take any action for or on behalf of the City whatsoever other than: i) Call a meeting to order, ii) Approve of meeting minutes, iii) Adjourn a meeting.” The move in effect abolished Benton Harbor’s elected City Commission and replaced it with an unelected bureaucrat, perhaps the first time this has happened in US history. ...The Nation
So we have a corporation angling for the land and no Benton Harbor mayor, no local political leaders to protect it from seizure by private interests. Achtung!