Lt Gov Gilchrist's Visit | Spooktacular Will Not Take Place

HCDP News for October 24th, 2023

In this Email

HCDP News for October 24 2023

  • Party News

    • Spooktacular Will Not Take Place, But We Still Need Your Help

    • Lt Gov Speaks to Local Democrats

    • First Wednesday: The Perfect Night for a Potluck!

    • Chaos - Our Meme of the Week

  • Statewide News

    • Gov Whitmer Announces Funds for Street Repairs in Houghton County

    • At the Capitol

    • Around the State

  • Upcoming Events

    • Community Events

Spooktacular Will Not Take Place, But We Still Need Your Help

We regret to inform you that our Fall Spooktacular virtual fundraiser is cancelled.

This year’s Spooktacular was envisioned to be a follow up to the very successful virtual event we held a couple of years ago during the pandemic. But we have not been able to generate the same level of interest in a virtual event this year.

Even though the event is cancelled, one thing about our Spooktacular appeal remains true - your support is crucial for the upcoming election season.

We had hoped to raise $2500 with our Spooktacular. That’s a portion of what we’ll need for the upcoming campaign season.

Office space will be our biggest expense next year. Typically we’re able to share those costs with local candidates. Even so, with the rental prices we are seeing, your county party could easily be looking at a need to raise $10,000 or more for rent and utilities for a centrally located office to support campaigning and get-out-the-vote efforts in 2024.

If everyone reading this newsletter were to donate $25 dollars we would exceed the target we set for the Spooktacular. If everyone could donate $75, we’d be within striking distance of our office space need.

Our Spooktacular ActBlue donation page is still open, and you can donate by clicking on the button below. Thank you.

Donations can also be made by mailing a check payable to the HCDC or Houghton County Democratic Committee PO Box 763 Houghton MI 49931.

Lt Gov Speaks to Local Democrats

Thirty people turned out to hear Lt. Gov. Garlin Gilchrist speak and take questions from local Democrats. Rep. Rachel Hood (D 81st) joined the session as well.

The Lt. Governor gave a short talk thanking local Democrats for their support for the Governor and him. That support is helping to make Michigan an example to the rest of the nation - a state full of people working to make good things happen.

Lt. Gov. Gilchrist speaking to local Democrats on Saturday

He then spent forty-five minutes interacting with us, taking questions from the group. Gilchrist spoke on:

  • Election integrity: He condemned the “brazen” actions by the fake electors in 2020. He praised the actions of county clerks like our own Jennifer Kelly, who insured that election results reflected what people actually voted for. Rep. Hood then spoke about bills in progress to allow more time for counting of absentee ballots.

  •  State actions to improve child care and education: He spoke on state efforts to stabilize child care during the pandemic. He also spoke about the Caring for MI Future program, which seeks to help open 1,000 new or expanded child care programs by the end of 2024. He talked about the Michigan Reconnect Program, a tuition-free pathway to higher education.

  • Criminal justice reform: Michigan now has the most progressive, expansive and inclusive expungement program in the nation - the Clean Slate program. On the day that program went into effect earlier this year one million criminal offenses were expunged.

  • Mental health services: He spoke about the implementation of the Certified Community Behavioral Health Clinic program, and community mental health clinics. Rep. Hood also added that she anticipates legislation by the end of this session that will increase accountability for insurers to pay for mental health services.

  • There was also discussion on green energy and electrification, and on the war in Ukraine; historically accurate education in schools; the importance of running for local school board; the attacks by the right on school and public libraries; and the need for affordable housing.

The Lt. Governor concluded his visit by again thanking local Democrats. Democrats across the state have put in the energy, the work, and the time to elect Democrats to make good things happen in Lansing, he said. His final remark: “We will continue to win together, so we can work together. We work together so we can win together.”

Group photo taken at the end of Lt. Gov. Gilchrist’s visit

First Wednesday: The Perfect Night for a Potluck!

The idea of holding potlucks before each of our monthly meetings was raised at the October meeting. Providing for a pre-meeting time to share food might be a good way to build community, and it also might encourage more people to attend the monthly meetings. The idea was well received.

So, starting with the next meeting on November 1st we’ll be having a potluck! 

You’re encouraged to show up at 6 PM, one hour ahead of meeting time, with a dish to share - whether homemade or store bought - and enjoy some quality time with your fellow Dems before we settle down to business at 7. And don’t worry, if you’re not a good cook and don’t have time to shop, we’d still love for you to stop in and enjoy some food and conversation.

Chaos - Our Meme of the Week

The US House has been without a Speaker and paralyzed into inaction since October 3rd. In the twenty one days since then the members of the Republican majority have been unable to get their act together and elect a Speaker. Rather than coalescing around a single leader, this past weekend they had nine people throw their hat in the ring. Even our Republican Rep. Jack Bergman, who “has a relatively low profile in the chamber”, thinks he has a shot at being Speaker and second in line to the Presidency. Maybe he does?

Were it not for the increasingly serious consequences - including supporting Israel, continuing funding for Ukraine, and the looming government funding deadline - the inability of Republicans to govern themselves would be comical.

The Campaign Ad Writes Itself

Our Meme of the Week comes from the Democratic National Committee, who posted the video below to their Instagram account. The video highlights the House Republicans’ dysfunction by quoting the words of their fellow Republicans. If you haven’t seen it you really ought to click on the image below to see the whole video.

“The word that comes to mind when you hear ‘Republicans’? Chaos.”

Gov Whitmer Announces Funds for Street Repairs in Houghton County

On Friday Governor Whitmer’s Office announced funding to “Fix the Damn Local Roads” in villages and small cities across the state. The funding includes over $500,000 for street repairs in Houghton and Hancock.

"These grants will help communities across Michigan fix local roads faster to save drivers time and money," said Governor Whitmer. "Since I took office, Michigan has fixed 20,000 lane miles of road and 1,400 bridges while supporting over 100,000 jobs, and today’s funding will add to that total. Let’s keep working together to fix the damn roads so people can go to work, drop their kids off at school, and run errands without blowing a tire or cracking an axle. Let’s get this done to make a real difference in people’s lives."

The grant makes funding available in Hancock for repairs to Minnesota Street and North Street/Prospect Street. Funding in Houghton is available for repairs to West Lakeshore Drive.

More information can be found in the Governor’s press release here.

At the Capitol

  • Democrats continue to struggle to pass the Reproductive Health Bill. On Tuesday, lawmakers cut a provision allowing Medicaid to cover abortions, as a way of bringing hold outs within the party on board. Democrats can’t afford to lose a single member’s vote on this legislation. But Rep. Karen Whitsett says she still cannot support the bill. MORE: Michigan Radio 

  • The Senate voted Wednesday to repeal a 1995 law shielding pharmaceutical companies from liability for drug injuries. The repeal comes less than two weeks after 200 Michiganders were shut out of a $425 million settlement with AstraZeneca over it’s heartburn medication Prilosec, that is linked to kidney disease. The legislation now moves to the House. MORE: Bridge Michigan

  • On Thursday Governor Whitmer signed legislation lowering costs for veterans and their families. The legislation reverses an appeals court ruling that stripped property tax exemptions from hundreds of widows of disabled soldiers. MORE: WZZM 13

  • Also on Thursday the Governor signed legislation codifying provisions of the federal Affordable Care Act into Michigan state law. Earlier this year the governor had championed this legislation as a proactive move. It’s necessary, she said, to ensure Michigan residents “aren’t at risk of losing coverage,” due to future Supreme Court rulings. MORE: 9 & 10 News

Around the State

  • Attorney General Nessel dropped charges against James Renner, one of the 2020 Michigan fake electors, after he agreed to cooperate with state prosecutors. This is the most significant development in the case since the AG filed the charges in July. MORE: CNN

  • A 2022 ballot proposal seeking to raise Michigan’s minimum wage to $15 was certified to appear on the 2024 ballot by the Bureau of Elections last week but hit a roadblock with the Board of State Canvassers. On Friday the Board deadlocked with a 2-2 vote on the Raise the Wage MI ballot measure, citing changes in the language of the petition. The deadlock effectively rejects the measure, pending potential litigation. MORE: M Live

  • Michigan Tech student Quinn Riordan is a 2023 recipient of the Obama-Chesky Voyager Scholarship for Public Service. The Scholarship was created by President and Mrs. Obama, and Airbnb co-founder Brian Chesky. It seeks to help shape young leaders who can bridge divides and help solve our biggest challenges together. MORE: Stories from Husky Nation

  • On Friday, before his trip to the UP, Lt. Gov. Garlin Gilchrist joined hundreds of striking workers in Detroit for a March for Workers’ Rights and Economic Justice. “When we fight, what do we do?” Gilchrist asked from the podium at Hart Plaza. “We win!” cheered the crowd. MORE: Michigan Advance 

  • Ryan Kelly, 2022 Michigan GOP gubernatorial candidate, has been sentenced to 60 days in federal prison for his role in the January 6th insurrection. MORE: Detroit Free Press

  • 2022 GOP gubernatorial candidate Perry Johnson has ended his long shot campaign for the presidency. MORE: Detroit News

HCDP Monthly Meetings: First Wednesday of each month. Potluck at 6 PM, Meeting at 7 PM. In the conference room at the Houghton Super 8, and by Zoom (starting at 7 PM).


Community Events

Wed 10/25

  • The Houghton City Council meets at 5:30 p.m. on Wednesday. The Meeting Agenda can be found in the Searchable Document Center of the Council's website.