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MI-12: Shocker: Sandy Levin facing a serious primary challenge

Anyone from Michigan knows that the Levin name is pretty much gold in the Michigan Democratic Party. Carl Levin has been kicking ass as one of our U.S. Senators for 30 years, and his older brother, Sander "Sandy" Levin has been a U.S. Representative for as long as I can remember. In addition, various other related Levins have been members of the state Supreme Court, federal judges, and so forth. Sandy's son, Andy Levin, ran for State Senate in 2006 and lost by a hair.

Why am I mentioning this? Because a headline broke today that is sure to cause a whole lot of raised eyebrows throughout the MDP:

Congressman Peters proposes child-care tax credit increase

This morning, my 3-year old son and I had the honor of attending a roundtable/press conference event with freshman Congressman Gary Peters (MI-09) to discuss the first bill that he's introducing to the 111th Congress.

My wife and I are both self-employed (myself for 10 years as a website developer; her for the past year as a professional coach/consultant). We share a home office (not easy to do with your spouse, but we've pulled it off so far!), and our son is in daycare 4 days a week (we alternate taking care of him one day a week, which is why I was able to bring him with me today).

Needless to say, the $600+ or so per month is quite a hit to our pocketbooks, only beaten out by our mortgage and health insurance premiums.

Since child care is rightly considered a legitimate business expense (paying someone to watch your kids frees you up to actually make a living), there's a federal child care deduction. In 1981, the Dependent Care Tax Credit (DCTC) was set at 20% of a maximum of up to $3,000 for one child an $6,000 for 2 or more children.

Jocelyn Benson rocks the OCDP house!

Last night (Tuesday) saw a momentous milestone in the Oakland County Democratic Party's history: I actually made it to their monthly meeting on time for once! Change Happened!

Seriously, though, aside from the other various and sundry items on the agenda, the most interesting event of the evening IMHO was the special guest speaker, Prof. Jocelyn Benson, who is running for Michigan Secretary of State in 2010.

EPIC/MRA just polled me re. MEA/education issues

At the most-recent Berkley Dems meeting (just two days ago) I mentioned being polled. Well, two days later, it happened again--this time by the well-known Michigan-specific polling firm EPIC/MRA.

Following are the questions and my responses to the best of my frantic chicken scratch note recollection: