Like President Joe Biden, Governor Gretchen Whitmer thinks she has a messaging problem. Just as Biden believes that Americans who are struggling financially need to better understand his achievements, Whitmer wants to reverse Michigan’s decline with slick advertising in other states. This month, she launched “You Can in Michigan,” a $20 million campaign that her administration is billing as “the largest state talent attraction campaign and effort in the U.S.”
Whitmer is right that Michigan needs more families and job creators. Between 2020 and 2022, according to the U.S. Census, Michigan’s population declined by 0.4 percent, a net loss of more than 43,000 residents. Overall, the state is growing more slowly than all its competitors in the Midwest, including neighboring Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, and Wisconsin. Michigan ranks 49th in population growth over the past two decades (behind only West Virginia), and by the end of the next two decades, University of Michigan researchers predict, the population will steadily decline. Big and small businesses alike are desperate for workers they can’t seem to find, and that crisis is only going to worsen.
Will an advertising blitz save the Great Lakes State?
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