Here we are at the end of a long couple of days, at the end of a VERY long year. A year that began with a lot of hope for the people of Michigan that we could get Michigan back on track. A year that, for me personally, began with the hope that we could finally set aside the partisan agendas and political games that have derailed our state’s progress for far too long.
When Governor Snyder and the Republican leadership took office at the beginning of 2011, they said to the people of Michigan, “Trust us.” They promised our families one thing: their focus would be on creating jobs.
Now, nearly 12 months later, one thing is clear. That trust has been betrayed. Their promises have been broken.
Instead of focusing on jobs, Republicans have given us a special interest driven agenda that hasn’t created one single job for the people of our state. They’ve attacked workers, they’ve gutted our education system and they’ve made it significantly harder for families to make ends meet.
The people of Michigan have come to the capitol by the thousands, they’ve called legislative offices and they’ve signed petitions all in an attempt to get their leaders to do one simple thing: listen.
They’ve been telling Republicans that the agenda they shoved down our throats this year is NOT what they were sent to Lansing to do. But Republicans chose to tune their voices out and listen instead to the special interests that saw this legislature and this administration as their own personal red carpet to walk down and use to pass legislation that in previous years they could have only dreamed of.
Legislation that takes money out of the hands of middle class families and puts it directly into the pockets of corporate CEOs, no questions asked. Legislation that raids our public education dollars and turns Michigan’s K-12 school system into a for-profit money making scheme for out of state businesses. And legislation that tells our unemployed workers that they are to blame for the lack of jobs their leaders failed to create throughout this year.
One thing is clear. Our state, and our families, deserve better.
2011 may have begun as a year of hope in Lansing, but Governor Snyder and Republican legislators quickly turned it into a year of anger, frustration and despair for families throughout Michigan. I think I speak for the people of Michigan when I say that enough is enough.
Republicans have had 12 months to show that they could deliver on the promises they made. To say they’ve failed would be the understatement of the year. So, as 2011 comes to a close, the Republicans will have a choice to make in 2012. They can continue on their destructive and partisan path, or they can finally listen to what the people of Michigan have been asking them do to do from the start.
It’s time for the partisan politics to end, it’s time for us to roll our sleeves up, and it’s time to get down to work.