Skubick: Snyder addressed 1 of 2 elephants during speech - KMSP-TV

Skubick: Snyder addressed 1 of 2 elephants during speech

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By Tim Skubick
FOX 2 Political Analyst

(WJBK) -- There were two elephants in the room the other night during the governor's State of the State:  He nailed one of them but didn't even take a shot at the other one putting on his blinders instead.

Elephant, or should we say donkey number one: The raw nerves in the Democratic caucuses over the governor's change of heart on right to work.

In what appeared to be a sincere outreach, which he needed to do, he in essence said, can't we just get along and put our differences behind us and work together.

When he extended the olive branch, Republicans dutifully jumped up and cheered the bipartisanship.  Democrats sat there.  No jumping, no hand clapping, just a long icy collective stare right into the governor's baby blues.

The silent blow back was heard round the chamber.

It may take time for the D wounds to heal and the governor will have to do more than just talk about working together to foster cooperation.  There are plenty of issues the Democrats could embrace with him but let's just say they aren't in the mood.  They have a collective headache.

And that's because of the RTW debate.  If that had not occurred last month, when the governor revealed his fee/tax hike for the roads in his SOS Wednesday night, the Democrats would have given him a standing ovation.  Just as they did two years ago when he embraced the Democratically endorsed bridge to Canada.

But because they are still smarting, they did not.

The governor is wading into the most severe test of his leadership skills in his short political career. If he can't cajole and woo the D's, his grandiose transportation package is toast..burnt to a crisp.

Elephant number two in the room:  This governor continued a long standing tradition among governors who have simply ignored the City of Detroit in their SOS.  If Mr. Snyder said the word Detroit, he must have whispered it to himself off mike.

Here you have the state's largest city tittering on the brink of insolvency, which would drag the rest of the state down, and the governor doesn't say squat.  It's as if the crisis in Motown did not exist.

In a border-line feeble explanation, the governor told WWJ NewsRadio 950 that  the "people are well aware of the Detroit issue and this was the State of the State so I wanted to make sure we had an approach that dealt with all the citizens all across the State of Michigan."

Say what?  

So Motown residents are not part of "all the citizens?"

In case he missed it, the good folks in Detroit are not exactly fond of the governor and now he gives them the cold shoulder with their mayor sitting in the audience when he did it. Bad form.

Some in the chattering class have suggested it was a good move to avoid the topic because whatever he said would have offended somebody. Well applying that fractured logic, he should have ignored his billion smacker road repair program because lots of folks were offended by that, too.

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