Attorney General Mike Cox today announced that he has asked all current and potential members of the legislature to pledge to the citizens of Michigan their support of creating a more transparent state government, including the creation of a transparency Web site (currently in the form of HB5137 and SB1441).
"Michigan citizens deserve transparency. Families are struggling to survive in this difficult economy, and they have a right to know that their tax dollars are being spent wisely," said Cox. "This isn't a partisan issue; this is a good government issue."
Cox, with bi-partisan support, favors passage of HB 5137 and SB1441. The bills would create a searchable Web site that would post all state spending online.
Good government or not, the reason extreme Republicans want such a site is to give fuel to the Norquist "drown government" crusaders out there looking to cull out examples they can take out of context and and use for justification as to why they need to cut taxes for the rich folk some more. Hoogendyk is using it as a campaign talking point on the aptly named "jackformichigan.org" (Jack for Michigan? Get it? Vote for Jack, and Michigan gets jack. Ha ha.) web site. This was one of DeRoche's pet projects/obstructionist tactics last year. House Republicans couldn't stop talking about it at one point, as if it was the answer to all of Michigan's problems. That's why Mikey likes it so.
A transparency site is a good idea - it's not that it isn't. If House Republicans want to come up with the money to set it up (besides kicking people off of health care, that is), go for it. But is using the power of the attorney general's office to size up "potential" right-wing recruits an acceptable use of the taxpayer's money now? The right threw a fit when Granholm wanted to run a stem-cell research petition - hard to see how this is any different.
Oh. I forgot. It's OK If You're A Republican.
I wonder what penalty will befall those Repulican potentials that don't follow Mike's marching orders and get those pledges in by October 3rd. Same goes for Democratic candidates for office. Will this be used against them in the last month of this campaign?