JIM CREES: We need politicians who don’t act like children
There comes a point at which people living in the State of Michigan really should stand up and say, “Enough!”
But ...I doubt that will happen. Folks seem to be ever so accommodating to the politicians in Lansing. Too often, our elected representatives just seem to drift from stupidity to stupidity and no one really calls them to order.
Fact is, I sincerely believe people really don’t care too much, and the politicians understand that as well. They get away with any type of ridiculous behavior, because voters only pay attention to what is happening when it immediately affects them personally.
We cycle from one election to the next, and rarely is there any hue and cry about what actually takes place on the floor of the House or in the back offices between the balloting. Politicians from both sides of the aisle, in the House and on the periphery, just keep making themselves — and all of us — look stupid.
The story goes like this ...
A couple weeks back, Democratic House leader Tim Greimel suggested to Republican House Speaker Jase Bolger that a number of Republican committee members who left a session of the House Insurance Committee early should be replaced. Greimel figured their leaving a meeting during which a discussion of the state’s no-fault insurance policies was taking place was simply an indication that the GOP reps weren’t taking their duties seriously.
Bolger responded to the suggestion by instead dismissing Democratic representatives from various committee assignments because they missed committee meetings themselves.
You poke me. I’ll poke you.
You shove me. I’ll shove you.
Trouble is, We The People kinda should expect a little more ...um ...er ...mature behavior out of the people elected to represent and govern over us.
But, no. House Republicans say the Democrats, through Greimel, made an unnecessary “partisan demand” and that Bolger simply responded “in kind.”
Gov. Rick Snyder was ultimately reduced to pulling a Rodney King and asking why we can all just get along.
So, Bolger reinstated the Democrats to their committee assignments and after a few days of confrontational politics, both he and Greimel came out with statements saying they’ve “...put the past behind us ...”
Let us review, not only the silliness, but the responses to the silliness by both parties.
Bolger notified the public that all was well in Lansing saying:
“We agreed to put the past behind us, roll up our shirt sleeves and focus on solving problems.
“While we will still have disagreements, because we have differences in philosophy, we are now moving forward to focus on productive input from all sides in legislative debates and achieving results for Michigan’s hard-working taxpayers.”
Greimel chimed in reporting:
“The residents of Michigan want legislators to focus on solving the state’s challenges and that is exactly what we intend to do. Obviously, there will be disagreements over policy, but we will continue to strive to reach common ground where possible.”
Both Greimel and Bolger are right. Civility and cooperation in resolving the real problems facing this state are possibly not want the public expects or demands, but it is certainly is what they deserve.
They, that is to say “we” deserve a state government that is managed and facilitated by people who are acting on a level that is a few steps above what you might have expected from your kids when they were much, much younger. MUCH younger.
Instead, the silliness just keeps going on — on both sides. Yes. Both sides.
Just days after the Bolger-Greimel pissing match, Oakland County executive L. Brooks Patterson called Jase Bolger “Adolph Bolger.”
You see. In Michigan politics, if you disagree with a man’s policies or politics, you compare him with the worst war criminal in recent history.
Seriously. One man espouses GOP policies, while the other is responsible for tens of millions of deaths.
Sorry, dude. No comparison.
I may disagree with Bolger, but that’s it. I disagree with him.
Then, Greimel, hot on his previous exchange with Bolger, comes out and claims that holding any kind of discussion with the GOP regarding road funding options would be not at all unlike having to “...negotiate with terrorists.”
For Heaven’s sake.
How long do the voters of the state need to put up with this?