Every modern day governor had one. A someone or something that was absolutely. 'posa -toot-ly, a colossal pain in the posterior.
Former Gov. Bill Milliken had the ultra-conservatives in his own party who resided in the state senate; Gov. Jim Blanchard had John Engler; Gov. Jennifer Granholm could have politically killed Sen. GOP leader Mike Bishop, and in fact in her book, she tried.
Which brings us to the current occupant on the second floor of the Romney building. Who gives Gov. Rick Snyder sleepless nights?
Some of you will blurt out Mark Brewer the state Democratic Party chair. Nope. Way too easy a pick.
Alright then you offer up Senate Democratic leader Gretchen Whitmer (D-East Lansing) who is feathering her own gubernatorial nest by dumping on the current one every chance she gets. Wrong again.
No, the governor's real nemesis is not a politician but, of all things, a fellow business leader, an entrepreneur and a fellow millionaire named Matty Moroun.
Name one other person during the Gov. Rick Snyder tenure that has inflected more pain and suffering than this crusty combatant.
The governor wanted lawmakers to build him a bridge between Detroit and Canada. The owner of the Ambassador bridge made sure the good governor got squat from his own party. Hey, anything to protect his monopoly.
The governor wants $1.4 billion to repair the infrastructure and he'll need new fees or taxes to do it. Along comes Mr. Moroun who hooks up with the Michigan chapter of the Americans for Prosperity with strong Tea Party links, to back a constitutional amendment to make all future revenue increases subject to a two-thirds legislative vote.
It's tough enough to get a simple majority to raise revenue, a two-thirds vote makes it next to impossible and Mr. Moroun knows it. And that's why the governor opposes it and why Mr. Moroun supports it.
And then there is the current ballot proposal giving the voters veto power over all bridge projects that are not up and running by next January. This was Mr. Thorn-in-the-Governor's side trying to circumvent the deal the governor made with Canada to build the span without a legislative O.K.
In other words Mr. Snyder and Mr. Moroun have been in the trenches since January of last year and the ultimate confrontation, heretofore never written about, may be on the horizon.
The governor has said he will likely seek a second term in two years and wouldn't it be dandy if he had a primary challenger nurtured by none other than Mr. Moroun. Talk about the ultimate insult to a sitting governor.
Everyone will dismiss this chatter as premature. After all the contest is more than two years away, but can you honestly say to yourself, this is not a possibility?
Really. Given the animosity that Mr. Moroun holds for the governor's policies, why wouldn't he take a shot at getting rid of the governor and be done with it... and his links to the Tea Party could help, since members are not so sure Mr. Snyder is one of them.
No need for an expensive recall that might not work. But fielding a "true" conservative to take on the increasingly moderate looking governor, would be a no-brainer. And with a pledge from deep-pockets Mr. Moroun to bankroll said "true" conservative, they would be falling all over themselves to get in that line to challenge the incumbent.
Yeah. You're right. It's way too far-fetched. Nobody would be vindictive enough to even consider such a thought.
Right. (Wink. Wink.)
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