Former Rep. Bart Stupak (D) said “a number of Democrats have asked him to run for governor and for the first time, he confesses he has not ruled it out.”
“Stupak contends if there are four or more candidates running for governor, and there are currently three, he could win the contest with 25 percent of the vote. … If there are four candidates running, ‘I would have to have a very serious conversation with my wife’ about running.”
“Two weeks ago he revealed that his wife told him he had to stay out of elective politics for four years Stupak says his ‘probation’ is now over, but he is not interested in running for governor. ‘I’m off probation,’ he said at the time. But does he want to run for governor? ‘No, thank you.’
“[H]is critics contend he would have a tough time winning a four-way race because he is pro-guns and is pro-life. But he points out one third of the Democratic party is also pro-life. When he ran for Congress he was very popular in what is now Donald Trump country and he figures, with his conservative leanings, if he ran again he would win.” (WLNS)
SAW IT COMING. “Lt. Gov. Brian Calley (R) handed over the leadership of his part-time Legislature ballot drive to conservative grassroots activists Friday, as he prepared for an expected 2018 campaign for governor. … Calley said he will continue to advocate for the constitutional amendment but will focus his time on a ‘broader agenda to continue Michigan’s comeback in 2018 and beyond.’ He stopped short of declaring his GOP gubernatorial candidacy, but an announcement is expected before year’s end.”
Calley said “the Clean Michigan committee is halfway toward collecting the 315,000 valid signatures needed to make the ballot, which includes an extra cushion of petitions to allow for duplicates and flaws. The initiative is ‘on track,’ he said, and the goal is to submit petitions in mid-to-late January — more than six months after the petition wording was tweaked in July.” (AP)
THE OTHER GUYS. The Michigan Nurses Association endorsed Detroit Health Director Abdul El-Sayed (D) on Monday. “The Michigan Nurses Association is the largest labor and professional association for registered nurses in Michigan.” (release)
El-Sayed says former President Bill Clinton encouraged him to “consider a career in public service” after they both spoke at the University of Michigan’s 2007 graduation ceremony. (Forbes)
Detroit Mayor Mike Duggan (D) “got a decisive [reelection] victory … on Tuesday. … But even before the celebratory champagne ran out, talk that Duggan might run for the governor’s seat in 2018 was back in full force. … [T]he political dynamics at play suggest that a politician with Duggan’s ambition, vision and popularity may find it difficult to resist what looks like a prime opportunity. Weakness among the current declared candidates could inspire a real push — behind the scenes—to get Duggan into the race.” (Detroit Free Press)
MUST BE THE HAIR. Rep. Paul Mitchell (R) endorsed state Attorney General Bill Schuette (R) on Monday: “Bill Schuette is the candidate who will bring more jobs to Macomb County and all of Michigan. … Bill Schuette stands by the Michigan taxpayer even when that means standing against members of his own party.” (release)
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Eleven days before the presidential inauguration last year, a billionaire Russian businessman with ties to the Kremlin visited Trump Tower in Manhattan to meet with Donald J. Trump’s personal lawyer and fixer, Michael D. Cohen, according to video footage and another person who attended the meeting. In Mr. Cohen’s office on the 26th floor, he and the oligarch, Viktor Vekselberg, discussed a mutual desire to strengthen Russia’s relations with the United States under President Trump, according to Andrew Intrater, an American businessman who attended the meeting and invests money for Mr. Vekselberg."
"The Justice Department asked its internal watchdog to examine if there was any impropriety in the counterintelligence investigation of President Donald Trump’s 2016 campaign, after the president demanded Sunday that the department investigate the motives behind the inquiry. Earlier Sunday, in one of a series of tweets targeting the probe into whether Trump associates colluded with Russia during the 2016 campaign, Mr. Trump wrote: 'I hereby demand, and will do so officially tomorrow, that the Department of Justice look into whether or not the FBI/DOJ infiltrated or surveilled the Trump Campaign for Political Purposes - and if any such demands or requests were made by people within the Obama Administration!'"