What would you say if YOUR governor did this?

United States
April 12, 2012 8:51pm CST
There is a repeal drive in Michigan to end a law that went into effect in 2011. It is a law that allows the governor to appoint an emergency manager to over see cities in Michigan that are in financial emergency. It doesn't sound like a bad thing, but one of the things it allows is for this manager to "strip authority from locally elected officials". That means that the governor can go into a city and appoint someone that will basically negate the vote of the entire city. The repeal of this has turned into a political game with republican supporters of the governor arguing over FONT SIZE of the petition to repeal the law. Do you think that a governor should have the power to negate the vote of citizens of that state? And, do you think you should at the VERY least have the right to vote on this yourself (regardless of FONT size)? http://www.mlive.com/politics/index.ssf/2012/04/group_emergency_manager_recall.html
4 responses
@Taskr36 (13924)
• United States
13 Apr 12
Honestly, I can see it both ways. Some cities are so corrupt, and run so horribly, that the state foots the bill to keep them functional. If the state is funding the city, than I can understand why the governor, elected by the people of the state, could have the power to appoint someone to run it. The other option is to just have the state cut a city off when their elected officials piddle away tax dollars or when the populace just isn't paying enough in to keep the city functional. The reason I am looking at it this way is because I live in New Jersey and work in Camden. If you are unfamiliar with the city, it's a hole. It has the highest crime rate in the country and is the rape capital of the US. At one point an attempt was made to fix the high unemployment rate their by requiring that all public employees in Camden LIVE in Camden. Naturally this led to extremely low standards and the city quickly degraded even further. The library system there was run into the ground. Eventually Chris Christie just cut them off. Camden county absorbed a few of their libraries and a millionaire donated a few hundred thousand dollars to get them back up and running. At this point instead of being a drain on the entire state, they are more of a drain on the county. I do understand the desire to have locals elect their own mayors and city councils, but if all they do is elect crooks, and then beg for the state to bail them out, I can understand why the state would be obligated to run the city instead of giving them money that might as well be put in a brown paper bag and set on fire.
• United States
13 Apr 12
Taskr, the problem that you have with a law like this is you are creating a KING of the state who can dictate who has authority in a city where the people were voted them into office. If that KING is corrupt than he could stripe the power from the people he doesn't like (like what is going on here), and try to dictate his own rule on people who don't want it. I agree with your thought of withdrawing money from the city, but this is definitely NOT what our founding fathers wanted for this country. As a matter of fact, this is exactly what they were fleeing when the came to this country.
@Taskr36 (13924)
• United States
14 Apr 12
A King? Seriously Debater? Can you tell me exactly which countries out there are ELECTING kings and which ones have kings that serve four years before facing reelection? Does it give the governor too much power? Maybe, but it doesn't make him into anything remotely resembling a king in any country I've ever heard of.
• United States
14 Apr 12
Taskr, Dictator better? He has the power to over rule the voters decisions, and is fighting EVERY effect to recall him. He changed the constitution to give himself more power of the people of the state. Does that sound like a governor you want running your state?
@Fatcat44 (1142)
• United States
13 Apr 12
Lets look at what is actually going on, and get bogged down with the font issue. It appears the big thing looks like the unions are upset because the law from 1990 give the state the right to put the emergency managers in place, but the 2011 version gave them power to actually do stuff. And it appears the unions are upset because these emergency managers are stripping away at the unions and the mismanagement that is happening there. So the union are out getting these petitions going. It appears that to me governors are given the authorization and jurisdiction when upon emergency conditions to take care of business. He is in an elected position to do this, and the law is on his side. If one does not like it, let them battle it out in court and see what is constitutional. And remember it at the next election for governor. Remember, we are a Republic, not a democracy. Sometimes petitions and people voting will not over weigh the constitution.
• United States
13 Apr 12
Fat, you are correct that it is the unions that are fighting this battle, but so is the ACL, and MANY constitutional lawyers. This law was pushed through a republican controlled government, and would give the governor king like powers. Not only can he go after union contracts, but he can also strip powers for elected officials with no need of proof of any wrong doing. I work for a company that does work for the city of Detroit, and we were told that this manager can come in and rewrite our contracts, and if they don't want to pay us they can. These managers were NOT elected by the people of these cities, and they have not liability to their actions. They will be political appointees more than likely straight from his donor list. Many cities in Michigan got this way because of the state government. When it comes to the schools in Michigan they were told they would get $6,500 per pupil per year. However, the schools received closer to $3,000 per pupil. How do you plan a budget if you have no idea how much money you are getting from the state, when that is your sole income source? Of course, part of that money was to come from the lottery, which we all know was a lie, and most states see very little if any money from their lottery systems. The question then becomes: What is the constitution worth if people will change it for their own personal good, and then won't allow the people to voice their own opinion? I would ASSUME that Michigan residence still have the first amendment right under the constitution of the United States of America, but you never know under republican control!!! I thought republicans were for less government? Is this less government?
@sierras236 (2740)
• United States
13 Apr 12
Would it be a vote on how incompetent the managers have been? Seriously, this is a tricky situation. The economy has forced many cutbacks and Michigan is probably one of the hardest hit due to the car companies. The city's income has to be practically zero in some areas. This is kind of a conditional thing. If the managers are trying and doing everything they can regarding the city's budget, than the answer is no. The only role would be as an adviser to help with creditors, etc. However, if there is ample of evidence of corruption involved than it should be a consideration but it should be temporary. It should be a long enough time to take care of the most immediate emergencies such as making sure the cops and fireman get paid but with the promise that elections would be held shortly to replace the appointed manager. Then it should be a shared responsibility until the new people have control over the finances.
• United States
13 Apr 12
Sierras, you are correct that there should be limits put on government in this case, but there are not. These emergency managers can strip powers away with no need to prove ANY corruption. They are can also impose their views on the people of that city (cancel contracts with city employees, venders) without ANY recourse by those effected. The company I work for has contracts with the city of Detroit, and we were told that if this manager comes in they can rewrite the contract, or decide not to pay us at all, and that is how it will be. This is what many republicans would call government overstepping it's bounds, but because the governor is a republican many are staying silent.
@atwilson (540)
• Indonesia
13 Apr 12
waw.. I can say nothing. it is to hard to say to Governor. lol