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Essays and Opinions


Reform Health Care Based on Facts

By U.S. Rep. John Dingell
August 11, 2009

Town hall meetings continue a democratic tradition that goes back more than 2,500 years. In ancient Athens, they held "Ecclesia" or gatherings to discuss and decide civic matters. Great movements have been born from these gatherings of individuals with different ideas working to forge consensus.

Last Thursday, I held two town hall meetings in Romulus to discuss a matter of the utmost importance -- health care reform. The large turnout made me very happy. I want to hear from opponents and supporters of the legislation.

Michigan Filmmakers Benefit from Film Incentives

By State Senator Gilda Z. Jacobs
August 10, 2009

Recently, I received a letter in support of Michigan’s film credits from Eddie Rubin, Co- President and Producer of the Michigan based film production company Deep Blue Pictures. Mr. Rubin copied me on his letter to Senate Finance Chair Senator Nancy Cassis because I am the Minority Vice-Chair of Finance, the committee that considers tax incentive legislation.

I found Mr. Rubin’s description of how the film credits work in his company to create jobs and more film business in Michigan very compelling.

Judge Sonia Sotomayor

By Sen. Carl Levin
August 6, 2009

This week the Senate is being called upon to do its Constitutional duty and consider a nomination to the Supreme Court. Positions on the Supreme Court are hugely significant given their lifetime tenures and the impact of the Court's decisions on the lives of all Americans. Our votes on Supreme Court nominees are among the most significant that we cast.

Five Facts About the Anti-Reform Mobs

There's been a lot of media coverage about organized mobs intimidating lawmakers, disrupting town halls, and silencing real discussion about the need for real health insurance reform.

The truth is, it's a sham. These "grassroots protests" are being organized and largely paid for by Washington special interests and insurance companies who are desperate to block reform. They're trying to use lies and fear to break the President and his agenda for change.

Film Credits Letter from Co-President and Producer of Michigan-based Deep Blue Pictures

From Sen. Gilda Z. Jacobs
July 29, 2009

On Tuesday of this week [July 28, 2009], I received this letter in support of Michigan’s film credits from Eddie Rubin, Co-President and Producer of the Michigan-based film production company Deep Blue Pictures. Mr. Rubin copied me on the letter to Senator Cassis because I am the Minority Vice-Chair of Finance, the committee that considers tax incentive legislation.

I found Mr. Rubin’s letter so compelling that I wanted to share it with you. There has been a great deal of discussion by legislators in the press recently about Michigan’s film credits. Mr. Rubin’s letter is an explanation of how those film credits actually work in his company to create jobs and more film business in Michigan.

Bringing Green Jobs to Michigan

By Rep. Ellen Cogen Lipton
July 30, 2009

Re-Energize Michigan

A coalition of Oakland County legislators, business leaders and clean energy advocates on Monday announced a plan to catapult Michigan forward in alternative energy and make the state a magnet for clean, renewable energy jobs. The plan builds on legislation passed last year and further positions Michigan to meet a growing demand for clean energy workers by offering powerful incentives for renewable energy development and manufacturing, energy efficiency and alternative energy production.

Budgets, Cut Backs, and Picnics

By Phil O'Dwyer, Chair
July 19, 2009

"Midsummer nights dreams" are turning into nightmares - even Shakespeare would be unhappy. Elected officials at every level of government are disturbed by the nightmare of budget management. "What would you cut?" is a constant refrain; "which services can we reduce or eliminate?" and "how do we respond when Lansing solves part of its problems by making those problems ours?" -- these weigh heavily on our minds in these difficult times.

Help Our Teens Be Teenagers, Not Teen Parents

By State Senator Gilda Z. Jacobs
June 30, 2009

We’ve all seen the cable news stories about alleged “pregnancy pacts” among teenage girls. Pact or not, this is a good reminder that we need to have candid discussions with our daughters and sons about teenage pregnancy. One thing that we can all agree on is that our teenagers should be teenagers and not parents. We all agree that we need to talk to our teenagers about preventing teen pregnancies, although some of us disagree on where and when those conversations should occur.