Whitmer still wants to fix the damn roads
Gov. Gretchen Whitmer stopped by I-496 in Lansing Tuesday to see the nearly completed construction of the first project in her “Rebuilding Michigan” plan. MDOT invested about $60 million to improve a stretch of the highway between I-96 and Lansing Road. Work included rebuilding the freeway and ramps and maintenance. The project is expected to wrap up soon. It’s also one of 122 projects on heavily traveled state-owned highways made possible or put on an accelerated timeline thanks to bond financing approved by the State Transportation Commission in January. Added Whitmer: “This freeway used to be held together with patches and emergency repairs, and with the hard work of our dedicated construction workers who worked on the front lines during the COVID-19 pandemic, this new project is yet another step towards building a stronger more reliable state.”
Lansing firefighters seek cadets
In partnership with the Lansing School District, Lansing Mayor Andy Schor recently announced the formation of the Lansing School District Fire Academy — a cadet program for high school students that began earlier this fall and was only recently approved by the City Council. The program helps high school students to complete their state firefighter certification while still in school. Participants attend training and classes every day of the week for a total of 242 hours of lecture and hands-on work, followed by state written and practical exams. At least 10 students are currently enrolled in the program and plan to take state exams before summer.
The Blue Wall has returned
A record 5.5 million Michiganians voted on Election Day, returning the state to Democratic hands after helping deliver it and the nation to Donald J. Trump four years ago. That’s 500,000 more votes than the previous record of 5 million votes in 2008, when Barack Obama carried the state, according to The Associated Press. Absentee voting accounted for nearly 3.5 million votes. The unofficial results show Biden leading Trump by more than 150,000 votes, compared to Trump’s 2016 victory by fewer than 11,000 votes. With Michigan in the bag, Biden went on to win Pennsylvania and the presidency. Meanwhile, first-term incumbent Gary Peters kept his U.S. Senate seat, narrowly beating Republican John James. U.S. Rep. Elissa Slotkin, a Democrat, held onto her district, which includes all of Ingham County, defeating Republican Paul Junge by a 4-point margin. Despite having a huge fundraising advantage this year, Slotkin ran about the same as she did in 2018 when she took the seat away from incumbent Republican Mike Bishop. In mid-Michigan’s other congressional district, three times did not prove the charm for Democratic challenger Gretchen Driskell, who lost by a wide margin in her third attempt to beat Republican incumbent Tim Walberg.
Hundreds protested at the State Capitol
Despite Joseph Biden’s 150,000-vote margin over Donald Trump in Michigan, hundreds of Trump supporters took the Capitol grounds Saturday claiming that the election had been stolen. That didn’t fall on deaf ears: The Republican-controlled Michigan Legislature issued a subpoena Saturday to investigate possible election irregularities, despite lack of evidence. Michigan troopers were on hand to keep the large Trump crowd separated by a few dozen Biden supporters who showed up to celebrate their victory.