May 29, 2011


Rookie governor runs the table (Brian Dickerson, 5/29/11, Detroit Free Press)

For the record, I never for one minute underestimated Rick Snyder's ability to get whatever he wanted from Michigan's historically obstructionist Legislature.

At least, not in so many words.

Oh, I may have snickered, along with other Snyder skeptics, at the thought of the political neophyte from Ann Arbor running headlong into the buzz saw of a Republican legislative caucus more concerned about its own re-election prospects than about the governor's plans to reinvent Michigan.

I may have wondered aloud, and even in print, whether anything in Snyder's experience as a corporate CEO had prepared him for negotiations with a co-equal branch of government -- a branch of government whose members he hadn't hired, couldn't fire, and had little leverage to discipline.

And I may have anticipated that once GOP lawmakers who'd pledged to cut taxes for everyone got a good look at Snyder's proposal (which prescribed tax cuts for employers and tax hikes for most everyone else), the resulting rebellion would send Michigan's earnest young governor scurrying for cover.

But I never said Snyder wouldn't get his way; I'm just a little stunned, along with everyone else who's gotten used to gridlock as a way of life, at the speed and scope of his victory. This was the Lions' Ndamukong Suh rumbling into the end zone for a touchdown before the opposing team knew it had lost possession of the ball. This was Israel after the Six Day War, wondering how it was going to manage all the territory its Army has just overrun.

And I'm talking about how Snyder humbled the opposition in his own part; Democratic legislators barely got on the field before the gun signaling the end of the fourth quarter went off.

Posted by at May 29, 2011 8:28 AM

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