Skubick: Snyder's unfinished business starting to pile up - FOX 35 News Orlando

Skubick: Snyder's unfinished business starting to pile up

Posted: Updated:
LANSING, Mich. (WJBK) -

Every effective leader had one.

President Nixon had Bob Halderman.

Gov. Milliken had his Jerry Miller.

Gov. Blanchard relied on the whiz kid Bob Bowman.

Gov. John Engler had Gov. John Engler and Gov. Granholm had John Cherry, though most in town believe he was heavily under- utilized.

Nonetheless these leaders had that somebody who could get in the clinches, toss around a couple of upper cuts, if needed, and do what was necessary to advance the agenda of the boss.

Which brings us to the current occupant of the executive suite.

Who does Gov. Rick Snyder have to do his clean and dirty work?

Best one can tell his go-to-guy is the Lt. Gov. Brian Calley.

They appear to be a good team as the governor is not afraid to share the limelight with his second in command and Mr. Calley has labored hard in the legislative vineyards and has helped to produce some significant wins for the administration.

But the undone stuff they are still struggling to adopt is piling up like the garbage in your neighbor's backyard and it's beginning to stink.

Insuring 400,000 in the Medicaid system, creating a market place for competitive health care insurance, a re-do of no-fault car insurance and the transportation package languish as the administration struggles mightily to reduce the stench.

Increasingly the players in this town are wondering, where's the beef?

Lobbyist on the road funding issue are especially flummoxed by the inaction. They are overjoyed to have a governor leading the charge but his "leadership" has not produced any votes and the mood in the room when they met the other day was gloomy as they see time wasting away as the pot holes continue to multiply.

"They (lawmakers) just want to get to the 4th of July and then they won't have to do anything," laments one lobbyist eager to see the governor's rhetoric of $1.2 billion a year turned into reality.

Some even yearn for the days of former Gov. John Engler who did his own heavy lifting, did his own name taking and calling; he was never bashful retaliating against those who burned him and was eager to mix it up to get what he wanted.  He was the gover-nator before there was Arnold Schwarzenegger.

In fact a former GOP senator tells the tale about Mr. Engler finally getting off his duff and deciding the state needed a gas tax hike. He was at the end of his rope when he called-in this senator who chaired the sub-committee handling the bill.

"I'm done with it," the frustrated governor opined and then tossed the bill in the senator's lap and walked out of the room saying he was going home for the night.

The senator said he knew what he had to do. "He was my governor. And out of loyalty, I voted for my first tax increase.  Besides you never know what you might want from the governor later on."

Exactly. That's how the system works.

The question is does this governor instill loyalty like that?  Will they walk the plank for him knowing he will return the favor down the road?

Senate Democratic Leader Gretchen Whitmer says she remembers those Engler days and urges Mr. Snyder  to go there.

But as one source puts it, "That's not him." He doesn't like confrontation and doesn't possess a woodshed.  Heck, he doesn't even like to swear.

It's not as if he is afraid of making tough decisions.  Over the objections of his inner circle he raised the pension tax on some seniors; with the threat of a public backlash, he sent an Emergency Manager into Motown; he ignored the legislature to build the bridge to Canada but in this game, it's what have you done lately?

Since he is not John Engler, he's got to figure out how to get this unfinished business done by molding a bi-partisan bulwark that will thwart the ultra right-wingers in his own party who so far are showing the governor up by denying him a win on all those issues.

His critics could say, merely uttering Relentless Positive Action over and over again and saying "let's get fired up" will not produce the 56 house and 20 votes he needs to get it done.  At least it hasn't so far.

  • Tim SkubickMore>>

  • Mark Schauer says he will not sign the 'no tax pledge'

    Mark Schauer says he will not sign the 'no tax pledge'

    Tuesday, July 29 2014 7:13 PM EDT2014-07-29 23:13:01 GMT
    The Democratic candidate for governor Mark Schauer says he will not sign the no tax pledge, and says he probably would have sent Detroit in bankruptcy if he had been governor. 
    The Democratic candidate for governor Mark Schauer says he will not sign the no tax pledge, and says he probably would have sent Detroit in bankruptcy if he had been governor. 
  • Mark Schauer details proposal to help women in the workplace

    Mark Schauer details proposal to help women in the workplace

    Wednesday, July 23 2014 5:59 PM EDT2014-07-23 21:59:06 GMT
    Gubernatorial candidate Mark Schauer is looking to win over the female voters in the upcoming election. He's proposing five points to help women in the workplace.
    Gubernatorial candidate Mark Schauer is looking to win over the female voters in the upcoming election. He's proposing five points to help women in the workplace.
  • The curse of Michigan's Lt. Governor

    The curse of Michigan's Lt. Governor

    Tuesday, July 22 2014 6:25 PM EDT2014-07-22 22:25:25 GMT
    No kid ever grows up wanting to be lt. governor, the second banana in state government.In Michigan there is a rich history of the second-in-charge wanting to use the office as a stepping stone to the top job as governor. Turns out it’s been a slippery stone as only two of twelvel.g.'s actually made it.The two winners were lt. governor John Swainson who served as the right-hand man to Gov. Soapy Williams and when he decided to retire, Mr. Swainson ran and won.Lt. Governor Bill Milliken served...
    No kid ever grows up wanting to be lt. governor, the second banana in state government.In Michigan there is a rich history of the second-in-charge wanting to use the office as a stepping stone to the top job as governor. Turns out it’s been a slippery stone as only two of twelvel.g.'s actually made it.The two winners were lt. governor John Swainson who served as the right-hand man to Gov. Soapy Williams and when he decided to retire, Mr. Swainson ran and won.Lt. Governor Bill Milliken served...
  • PoliticsPoliticsMore>>

  • Election info for 2014 Michigan primaries

    Election info for 2014 Michigan primaries

    Tuesday, June 24 2014 5:31 PM EDT2014-06-24 21:31:30 GMT
    Elections for the office of Michigan State Senate and for the office of Michigan House of Representatives will consist of a primary election on August 5, 2014, and a general election on November 4, 2014.
    Elections for the office of Michigan State Senate and for the office of Michigan House of Representatives will consist of a primary election on August 5, 2014, and a general election on November 4, 2014.
Powered by WorldNow

35 Skyline Drive
Lake Mary, FL 32746

Phone: (407) 644-3535
News Tips: (866) 55-FOX35

Didn't find what you were looking for?
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Fox Television Stations, Inc. and Worldnow. All Rights Reserved.
Privacy Policy | Terms of Service | Ad Choices