The Democratic gubernatorial race in Michigan right now is a bit of a clown show. The front runner, Lt. Governor John Cherry has left the race. A former state Treasurer got in and out in less than a week. Even George Perles, former Mich.State Univ. football coach has been suggested as a candidate. Right now the mayor of Lansing Virg Bernero, two state Reps, Alma Wheeler-Smith and Speaker of the House Andy Dillon, and Genesee County treasurer Dan Kildee are all in.
The GOP is putting up a number of candidates in including Pete Hoekstra, Rick Snyder and AG Mike Cox (yes, that's really his name.)
But now comes Tea Partier Stacey Mathia. Will she be a spoiler for the Republicans?
[H]ow does Stacey Mathia, who is running as independent but is affiliated with the Tea Party movement, think she’s going to do it? It starts with the basics.
"If you look at Michigan, and what we’ve had here the past eight years, we’ve lost all common sense," Mathia says.
Mathia’s first priority would be the elimination of the Michigan Business Tax
Yes, taxes are the cause of all our problems. In addition to repealing the MBT, she would "cut our government budget by a minimum of 15% upon innauguration [sic]."
Besides misspelling "inauguration", her website also tells us:
I am not a professional politician. I am a mother of four wonderful children that until recently I have home schooled for the past several years. I have grown angry with the arrogance of our elected officials. That anger is what led me to make the decision to run for Governor of Michigan!
She's such a dedicated angry mother that she had to leave them to run for governor:
Last month, she temporarily relocated to Bay City -- leaving her four children, ages 2-13, in the care of a relative -- to run for office.
Mathias is a Tenther, is anti-union, and she opposes investment in clean energy and, apparently, efficiency:
"We are pouring millions of dollars into wind energy and energy-efficiency, and we have mandates on our companies that both Republicans and Democrats have supported," Mathia said. "This is going to raise our rates as consumers. If you mandate that a company be efficient, that’s going to affect the people who pay for it."
This is perhaps the first time in my life I've ever heard a candidate run an anti-efficiency campaign.
Considering her very conservative, anti-government views, it seems clear that Mathias will draw votes not from the Democrats but from Republicans almost exclusively. Could she be the saving grace for the Democrats who seem to be struggling to get their act together? Only time will tell if she, like Doug Hoffman in the New York 23rd District race before her, spoils it for the Republicans. At this point, it seems unlikely that Mathias will put together a campaign that's a threat to anyone except her family.
She will need to collect 30,000 petition signatures by mid-July to get on the November ballot as an Independent candidate. To do that, and put together a campaign, Mathia will have to raise money, something she said hasn't worked out so far.
"A lot of people want to help, but they can't do anything financially," she said last week.
As a result, a campaign manager she imported from New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, a Tea Party favorite, has gone home until she can pay him.
"For right now, I'm doing it on my own," she said.
She apparently fired the person who does her blog, too. It has one entry from two months ago.
As a side note, the Letters to the Editor section of the Detroit Free Press had, on the same page as their article about Mathias, two quite excellent letters. One asked:
What will all the Tea-Partyers give up?
This is really a question for all those who support the Tea Party who want less taxes and less government. Please, clearly tell me what government services you would give up personally to have both -- not what you want others to give up, but you personally. Spell it out for the rest of us, because your government waste may be someone else's necessary program.
Will you ask others to give up better roads, better military armor, better schools, or even their medical support so taxes can be lowered? Should we cut out regulations that protect our environment? Should we stop taking care of our national parks, which our grandparents left in our care?
Should we slow our support for businesses to retool and rebuild? Who will stop big business from running over the rights of little guys if we go back to small government? What does your America look like in 10 years if you get your way?
UPDATE: Don't look now but it turns out she's a dreaded "Community Organizer"!!!
Sarah Palin is not going to be happy about this...
I'm just sayin'...
Cross-posted at Eclectablog.com.