From the Chair:
There’s an old saying “beware of a wolf in sheep’s clothing.” After 3 weeks of chaos, Republicans in the U.S. House lined up 100-percent behind an unknown Louisiana back-bencher, Michael Johnson, as Speaker. Republicans unanimously elected the affable Johnson only after Donald Trump instructed Republicans to oppose the member they nominated hours earlier, Minnesota’s Tom Emmer. Emmer’s sin: he publicly recognized that Joe Biden was elected in a fair and honest election. To Trump, that’s all he needs to hear to attack someone.
Johnson has a charming, low-key demeanor. But his political views are anything but. He’s a radical right extremist – anti-choice, anti-LGBTQ and even openly anti-democracy. Based on his political record, the soft-spoken Michael Johnson poses a threat to our democratic system of government.
“MAGA Mike” Johnson still doesn’t admit that Joe Biden won the 2020 election which Johnson has repeatedly said was stolen. He openly promotes the same lies that led to 3 Trump attorneys pleading guilty to election fraud-related charges. Johnson led efforts in the U.S. House to have the Supreme Court overturn Biden’s decisive victory in Michigan and three other states. When that failed, he joined the majority of House Republicans in voting against certifying Biden’s victory. On the day of Johnson’s elevation to the most powerful position in Congress, his Republican colleagues booed a reporter who asked about Johnson’s leadership is trying to overturn the election. They even told the reporter to shut up. They are totally under the thumb of the man accused of 91 different crimes in four courts.
What could it mean for democracy? Consider this scenario:
It’s January 6, 2025. After still another close election, Joe Biden prevails again in the electoral college vote. But the House of Representatives, operating under instructions from Donald Trump and implemented by Michael Johnson, votes to reject the results from one or more swing states, denying Biden the electoral college majority. Without any candidate getting 270 electoral votes, the President is then chosen by the House with each state getting one vote. That means Wyoming’s one Congressman’s vote is equal to the combined votes of the 53 from California or the 13 from Michigan.
Under that scenario, despite losing the popular vote for a third time, Donald Trump would reinstalled in the White House…possibly as a convicted criminal.
Far fetched? It shouldn’t even be a possibility, but with all Republicans in the House operating under orders from Donald Trump, and Michael Johnson as Speaker, it could happen.
So what do we do? We start by holding Michigan’s 6 Republican members accountable for endorsing an election denier as their leader. With that vote, none of them is worthy of the honor of representing our state. And we need to retake the majority in the House so that Hakeem Jeffries is Speaker of the House on January 6, 2025. We do that by increasing our majority in the Michigan delegation (and also holding Debbie Stabenow’s seat in the Senate). The mission is clear.
In Michigan, legislative Democrats are working on issues that impact families across our pleasant peninsulas. One increasingly discussed issue is the impact of fighting climate change on jobs and our economy. Change can be frightening. The transition of our major industry from internal combustion engines to EVs is happening. That decision has been made by the manufacturers. What does it mean for their employees and other industries that could be impacted by clean energy initiatives?
According to Bridge Michigan, nearly 20 percent of the jobs in our state are tied to auto manufacturing. Even more jobs are connected to electric power generation. Both are undergoing major transitions: autos from gas-powered to electric, power generation from coal and natural gas to renewables.
The Legislature is considering bills that would establish an economic transition office focused on helping workers and communities facing job losses related to those transitions. We’re joined on the podcast by a lead sponsor of the bills, Flushing state Representative Jasper Martus.
In the News This Week
- Democrats seek new office to aid Michigan with green energy job losses | Bridge Michigan
- Michigan Dems vote to repeal ‘rape insurance’ law requiring abortion rider – Bridge Michigan
- Battle lines form as Michigan Democrats eye 15 weeks paid family leave – Bridge Michigan
- Michigan Democrats unveil push for tougher polluter pay laws – Bridge Michigan
- Michigan among states suing Meta for endangering youth mental health – Detroit Free Press
- Michigan may soon repeal ban on paid rides to election polls – Bridge Michigan
- Michigan $15 minimum wage ballot petition blocked, setting up court fight | Bridge Michigan
- Secretary Benson testifies in support of bills to expand required financial disclosure – Secretary of State
- MCFN Testifies to Senate Oversight Committee Regarding Proposed Financial Disclosure Law – Michigan Campaign Finance Network
- Michigan attorney general drops charges against a fake elector who agrees to ‘cooperate fully’ – NBC News
- Agreement deal in fake elector case could mean more flips, experts say – Detroit Free Press
- Gov. Whitmer considers changing how trustees are chosen after MSU board chair controversy – The State News
- Michigan State’s Rema Vassar defends self again at MSU board meeting – Lansing State Journal
- Michigan GOP Senate Candidate James Craig Loses Two Top Campaign Aides (Exclusive) – The Messenger
- The UAW, Trump, and th electrified future of the U.S. auto industry – Judd Legum/Popular Information
- Marjorie Taylor Greene moves to censure Rashida Tlaib – Detroit Free Press
- New speaker Mike Johnson’s 2020 election denial could have 2024 implications – The Washington Post
- Mike Johnson Helped Engineer Trump’s Coup. Then Democrats Helped Make Him Speaker. – Mother Jones
- Mike Johnson Is as Extreme as It Gets – Mother Jones
- Mike Johnson Hates America, But He Believes He Can Save It – Mother Jones
- Judge says Georgia’s congressional and legislative districts are discriminatory and must be redrawn – AP News
- N.C. redistricting map likely to flip 3 House seats for Republicans passed – The Washington Post
- Republicans say Trump didn’t try to overturn 2020 election – The Washington Post
- U.S. Economic Growth Accelerated in the Third Quarter – The New York Times
- Fox News host gives climate skeptics airtime, but went solar at home – The Washington Post
- Utilities Have Been Lying to Us About Gas Stoves Since the 1970s – Mother Jones
- Opinion: This is your brain on crime – New York Times/Paul Krugman
- Justice Thomas’s R.V. Loan Was Forgiven, Senate Inquiry Finds – The New York Times
- New Clarence Thomas ethics questions about forgiveness on luxury RV loan – NPR