Don't turn back clock on Mich. progress

This column originally appeared in the Detroit News.

This November’s general election offers no minor squabble between generally aligned and milquetoast alternatives.  This election offers voters choices between candidates and political parties that are diametrically opposed to one another, with visions for the state as different as night and day.

Every day brings new evidence of the growing divide between solutions-oriented conservatives and hyperbolic and hysterical liberals who’ve drifted further from Michigan voters and closer to violent extremists by the week.

Republicans are campaigning on their plans to grow the economy, battle sex trafficking, protect health care for all, and hold government accountable (even when it’s other Republicans at the helm).

Democrats are “doxing” members of Congress to encourage violence and harassment, pledging an end to “civility,” and physically threatening and intimidating Republicans in their homes, out to eat in restaurants, and on their way to work. And when they’re done with their political opponents, they’re pushing higher taxes, weaker healthcare, larger deficits and a weaker military.

Just this month, Hillary Clinton went on national television to tell voters that Democrats will patently refuse something as simple as acting civilly, unless they seize control of Congress in November. 

Closer to home, Democrats are fielding a candidate for attorney general who has come under withering fire from her own staff members who allege she’s running perhaps the most abusive and unhealthy campaign in Michigan political history, attacking, demeaning, and belittling everyone around her. More than 20 staffers have come and gone because of the abuse.

The Democrats running with her aren’t demanding better behavior – they’re shooting videos with her, bragging about how much they embrace her.  When Obama-era Attorney General Eric Holder was caught on camera telling Democrats to “kick” their opponents, Michigan Democrats responded by posting endorsement videos bragging about earning Holder’s support.

Meanwhile, Republican are going about their business delivering results for middle-class families, and there’s actual real life data that can help voters cut through the noise before they walk into the voting booth. 

Today, after eight years of Republican control, our unemployment rate is 4.1 percent. In 2010, the last of eight years of leadership from state Democrats, that rate peaked at an apocalyptic 13.9 percent.

Numbers like those can be hard to grasp, so let’s put them into real-world terms.  In August 2018, the last month for which records are available, total employment in Michigan reached 4.696 million. That’s more than a half-million more than the 4.182 million people working in December 2010, when the same Democrats bullying their way to the top today last held control.

In other words, Republicans so profoundly transformed the way state government and citizens interact, that 514,000 more people are working today than under Democrats.

Voters have a choice. Violence, threats, intimidation, and unruly mobs or results that mean more jobs and bigger paychecks. What that future looks like is entirely in your hands. Choose wisely.

Greg McNeilly is the chairman of the Michigan Freedom Fund.

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