The following is a message from Mark Brewer, Chairman of the Michigan Democratic Party:
Michigan Democrats call upon Michigan Republicans to join together with us to save Michigan taxpayers the $10 million that the 2012 Michigan Presidential Primary would cost. The Michigan Democratic Party, recognizing the severe budgetary stress on state and local governments, has decided not to use the state-funded presidential primary in 2012 to allow the $10 million it would cost to be used for our local schools, colleges and police services. Michigan Democrats will hold our own presidential caucuses — at our own expense — on May 5, 2012. We call upon the Republican Party to do the same thing.
The Michigan presidential primary is set under existing law for February 28, 2012, a date that is in violation of the rules of both the Democratic National Committee and the Republican National Committee (“RNC”). If Michigan Republicans use this February 2012 presidential primary, the RNC automatically will cut the number of delegates from Michigan to the Republican National Convention in half – with absolutely no possibility under RNC rules that these lost delegate positions can be restored.
The Michigan Republican Party controls the Legislature and Governorship and can choose to not fund the 2012 presidential primary. This is exactly what Michigan Republicans supported for 2004, when the Michigan presidential primary was cancelled due to state fiscal constraints. As recently as last year, former Secretary of State Terri Lynn Land credited herself with” fiscal responsibility” for leading “the way in advocating for the cancellation of Michigan’s unneeded presidential primary election in 2004, a move that saved taxpayers approximately $7 million.”
Last week, Republicans and Democrats in Washington State joined together to cancel the $10 million in funding for their 2012 presidential primary due to the fiscal stress facing that state. Kansas and Utah also are eliminating funding for their presidential primary to save scarce taxpayer funds. Other states are considering eliminating their funding for a separate presidential primary. Why not Michigan?
Michigan Republicans and Democrats should join together and do the fiscally prudent thing: cancel the 2012 presidential primary and let that $10 million in funding be used for the essential needs of Michigan taxpayers. It is wrong to take critical government services away from our citizens while at the same time using their taxpayer money to fund our own internal party politics. Michigan Democrats are committed to giving this taxpayer money back. If Michigan Republicans join us, the $10 million will be saved. Let’s be responsible together.
Michigan Democratic Party
Lansing, MI 48933
(517) 371-2056 (fax)