Gov. Gretchen Whitmer and Michigan’s new Democratic majority have wasted little time reshaping the economy, government and society this year.
Everything will become harder as the governor and her allies impose their agenda on the state. An entrepreneur will have to pay more to start and run his dream business. A college graduate will see fewer opportunities when she reviews the job market. Energy will be less reliable, with costly trade-offs. Public schools will be less accountable, even when they fail to educate kids. Government unions will have broad new powers to push policies that hurt taxpayers.
No wonder our supporters are asking, “How will we turn Michigan around?”
Here’s our approach:
- The foundation of any movement is an idea. Ideas are durable. They outlast electoral swings. Powerful ideas are easily communicated and understood.
- Even with good ideas we need to reach people and capture their imaginations. Our new capabilities such as Mackinac Center Action and the Frank Beckmann Center for Journalism help move ideas into the Overton Window.
- Michigan’s comeback will be bigger than one person or one organization. A network of people must pursue big ideas together. Who out there is working together, helping allies, growing the movement? Leadership resides here.
- We need talented people. Former Gov. John Engler showed how to build a talent pipeline for liberty. His team identified good people, entrusted them with opportunities and placed them in positions of influence. Nothing like that exists today in Michigan, but it should.
- Government overreach is inevitable, so liberty needs litigators. The Mackinac Center Legal Foundation has earned national recognition for its high-impact lawsuits: ending Gov. Whitmer’s unconstitutional emergency orders, exposing the Michigan Education Association’s pandemic fraud, and rescuing Michigan’s income tax cut.
- Lawmakers pushed Michigan toward forced unionism this year. To counteract these coercive policies, the Mackinac Center is working here and across the country to promote worker freedom. This includes educating hundreds of thousands of union members about their rights.
- The Mackinac Center encourages policymakers of both parties to act in the public interest. We educate legislative candidates about free- market principles. Our team in Lansing places our policy research into lawmakers’ hands. We help train their aides and staffers about policy. And we keep people informed by holding policy briefings in legislative districts across the state.
Michigan matters — and not only to those of us who call it home.
Michigan’s entrepreneurial legacy produced famous companies: Ford, Kellogg, Stryker, Carhartt, Whirlpool, Gibson Guitars, Amway, Dow, Lear.
Motown shaped the world’s musical tastes. We steward abundant natural resources, with a unique position amid the Great Lakes.
Michigan enjoys many historical distinctions. The Republican Party was founded in 1854 by a group of abolitionists in Jackson. Detroit was an important stop on the Underground Railroad. Our manufacturing might was celebrated as “The Arsenal of Democracy” during World War II.
Even our failures (Detroit bankruptcy, Flint water crisis, repealing right-to-work) produce international headlines!
Michigan has disproportionate political significance. As a battleground state and one of America’s ten most populous states, it is a prize for electoral votes and policymaking.
Michigan matters. It’s a state worth fighting for.