Tuesday, August 01, 2006

Democratic Activists: Why I Believe in Jennifer Granholm

Many progressive activists, including myself, have been talking about Dick DeVos' significant flaws and the horrors of Amway's business model at great length. This is important -- the average Michigan voter is subjected to a barrage of one-sided portrayals of Dick DeVos, which we can help to rectify through grassroots, netroots, and other people-powered efforts that engage voters in a more direct dialogue.

However, we must not give into the temptation of merely trashing DeVos without talking about what we stand for and our unique vision for the future of Michigan. In this light, I want to explain why I find fulfillment in doing everything I can to re-elect our Governor. In doing so, I hope that you will consider donating your free time to both the Governor's re-election effort and equally important efforts to take back the state legislatures.

A good candidate is much more than someone who happens to have the "right" yes or no answers to a variety of policy questions. I believe passionately that Jennifer Granholm is the right choice for Michigan not just because I agree with the vast majority of her policies, but because I see in her the qualities that every elected official ought to have.

Ultimately, Governor Granholm shows a kind of empathy for her fellow citizens that I have rarely seen in my other elected representatives. So many people in positions of power seem to become so wrapped up in their own worlds that they lose touch with the realities that most people face every day. People don't care about political campaigns, attack ads, squabbles between Democrats and Republicans, or the latest polls. They care about whether they can pay for their home heating bills and car insurance. They wonder about whether they have enough money to pay for gas to make it to work and back. They grapple with the difficult choice between paying for food or much-needed medicine. People wonder about whether they'll be able to put their kids through college so that they can find rewarding jobs and grow up to raise their own families.

Governor Granholm has a proven record of being responsive to these issues. When watching her speak with people, I can't help but feel that she understands exactly where they are coming from because she's been there too. For example, I'm a college student. Even though going to college is a fantastic investment, I know firsthand how overwhelming tuition really is. I have faith that Governor Granholm has been working to deal with the the rising cost of tuition because she knows college is really expensive too -- she used student loans to put herself through college, and understands their tremendous value. Try asking Amway Guy about that!

Granholm has shown us that its not just presidents and dignitaries who deserve our respect and appreciation, but ordinary Michiganders too. She has shown us that it is possible for anyone to change society, one youth at a time if their heart is truly in it. Jennifer Granholm has shown us that one person with enough enthusiasm and determination can overcome overwhelming odds to become the Governor of Michigan.

It takes a truly exceptional Democrat to overcome the challenges of working with a Republican State Legislature, Republican state courts, Republican Congress, Republican Secretary of State and Attorney General, Republican Supreme Court, and a Republican President. Governor Granholm has overcome these significant obstacles to extend affordable prescription drug coverage, increase access to higher education, and prevent large-scale water diversions from our Great Lakes.

With all of this in mind, I understand that nobody agrees on every single issue. For example, as an avid video game player, I feel that my fellow gamers and I have been neglected equally by both sides of aisle. However, I refuse to let a single issue control me to the extent that I base all of my decisions on that one issue. We must not allow differences of opinion on individual issues to obscure our commitment to Democratic principles. We all believe in a society that provides an equal opportunity for every child, woman, and man to succeed. We all believe that by looking out for each other and making Michigan a better place to live for everyone, we can improve everyone's lives as individuals.

We are fighting for nothing less than the survival of these values and the future of our state. Despite a failing economy (not her fault) and an obstructionist State Legislature, Jennifer Granholm has stood proudly by her principles to provide a future for Michigan. Governor Granholm has worked to create a setting that will bring the best technology jobs from across the world to our state. She has worked to make us the pioneers in the adoption of alternative energy in spite of all of the challenges from Republicans. However, these changes take time, and cannot be evaluated in such a short period of time. In order to keep our state on the right track, we must win this election.

Its going to be a tough race, and we are looking at the most volatile electorate that we have seen in years. This is why it is more important than ever to go door-to-door and campaign for Michigan Democrats like Jennifer Granholm. We are in a unique position to deliver localized messages to our friends and neighbors in our communities, and we need to be the infrastructure that delivers for our values. This means not only taking a stand against DeVos, but taking a stand for Granholm.

This post was prompted by a discussion with my buddy Chris. Happy birthday bro!

(cross posted on Michigan Liberal... front paged!)

Also, thanks to Zack Pohl for the plug.


At 6:00 PM, Blogger David A Wishinsky said...

Amen, Brother.


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