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Vote Spotter convention coverage blog -- it's all Trump

Our plucky new cub reporter was in Cleveland and whipped up this for VS:


Michigan delegates converged on Cleveland to support their respective candidates and the Republican National Committee's platform. Several Michigan delegates talked to Vote Spotter about what issues matter to them and why they're supporting Donald Trump, who accepted the Republican presidential nomination Thursday night.


Tamara Carlone, who was elected by the 11th congressional district as a Kasich delegate, supports the New York businessman and said the RNC's platform is more conservative than previous conventions.


“The RNC platform that’s been passed is very strong. It’s even more conservative than before, which I love," she said Tuesday. "I especially love the part on education and marriage."


"My candidate is Donald Trump. He wants to make America great again," Carlone added. "He wants to go back to founding principles and he wants to keep our nation safe."


Other issues important to Carlone are national security and supporting law enforcement officers.


"I have kids, I want them to be safe and I don’t want to have to worry about our cops getting shot and this type of thing, and I do believe once it’s said and done that [Trump] will unite us."


Don Evan, a delegate from Novi, said liberty-related issues, the Fourth Amendment, and immigration are most important to him.


"My biggest issues that are important to me are the liberty agenda and bringing us back to the constitution -- Fourth Amendment issues are really big for me, cell phone spying, things like that."


"I support Donald Trump because I really do think he's going to make America great again, policy wise," he said. "Immigration is obviously what he hit on hard and I think he's going to actually do it. No one else is talking immigration. Also, to them its just rhetoric."


Lauren Burress is a delegate from West Bloomfield who also pledged support to Trump prior to his official nomination, citing border issues.


"My candidate is Trump and it's because of the border issues. I'd like to see a wall. But also the northern border is very important," she said. "Nothing has changed, it's gotten worse."


Wes Nakagiri of Hartland cited trade and immigration as reasons for supporting Trump.


"I like [Trump's] position on immigration; I'm a fan of the wall," he said. "I like his position on trade. I don't think we really have free trade, I think we have managed trade. I think America is getting the short end of the stick on managed trade."


Marian Sheridan, alternate delegate for Donald Trump from West Bloomfield, said the RNC platform's section on simplifying the IRS and repealing the Johnson Amendment are important to her.


"What I like about the platform is the section on the IRS," she said. "I think it's very important that the code be simplified. I think that helps to de-weaponize the IRS."


"I like the repeal of the Johnson Amendment that's recommended in [the RNC platform] because I think it limits free speech of non profits. I think that's really important for non-profit organizations to have that freedom," Sheridan added.

Derek Draplin
CapCon Reporter

Who is Republican Vice Presidential Nominee Governor Mike Pence?

Immigration

Mr. Pence is opposed to granting amnesty for people who have come to the United States without authorization. He has supported increased border security measures, strict enforcement of laws prohibiting unauthorized residents from working in the United States and a government-run guest worker program that would place prospective immigrants with employers who cannot find American workers to fill open jobs. Earlier this year, he sought to bar the resettlement of Syrian refugees in his state.

Gay Rights

Mr. Pence, who has supported numerous legislative efforts to ban same-sex marriage in Indiana, was at the center of the national debate over so-called religious freedom laws that critics said could make it easier for businesses to refuse service to gay couples. As a congressman, Mr. Pence opposed federal funding that would support treatment for people suffering from H.I.V. and AIDS, unless the government simultaneously invested in programs to discourage people from engaging in same-sex relationships. He also resisted changes to hate-crime laws that that would have included acts against lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people and he opposed the end of “don’t ask, don’t tell,” a Clinton administration policy that allowed closeted L.G.B.T. people to serve in the military.

Abortion

As governor, Mr. Pence signed into law several regulations that add broad limits to women’s access to abortions. He approved a bill in March that outlawed abortions based on a fetus’s “race, color, national origin, ancestry, sex, or diagnosis or potential diagnosis of the fetus having Down syndrome or any other disability.” The bill led to backlash on social media from opponents of the regulation. Mr. Pence also called for an investigation of Planned Parenthood after footage leaked by abortion rights opponents that outraged many abortion rights advocates. The videos turned out to have been altered by the people who released them and the videographers were later indicted on a charge of tampering with a government record.

Foreign Policy

Mr. Pence’s foreign policy views mesh well with Mr. Trump’s “America First” framework, which is built around the idea of a robust American military. The Indiana governor called for big increases in military spending during a speech in 2015 and he has criticized Democrats who do not use the phrase “Islamic extremism” when discussing jihadists. As a member of Congress, where he was on the House Foreign Affairs Committee, Mr. Pence was a strong supporter of Israel and a proponent of tough interrogation measures for prisoners at Guantánamo Bay. Mr. Pence voted to authorize military action in Iraq in 2002 and opposed proposals to set a date to withdraw troops from Iraq.

Gun Rights

Mr. Pence has received an “A” rating from the National Rifle Association, which has financially supported his campaigns for the House and for governor. He supports a national right to carry a firearm in public and in 2004, as a member of the House, he voted to repeal gun control laws in Washington, D.C. He wrote on Twitter in June that he “will always be a strong proponent of the Second Amendment.”

Trade

Mr. Pence has said he supports free trade, but he has also raised concern over the enforcement of trade agreements with China. Specifically, he asked the federal government to investigate allegations that Chinese steel companies were dodging tariffs in deals with American businesses. As governor, Mr. Pence visited nations like Japan and Germany on trade missions meant to stoke Indiana’s trade relationships with international businesses.

Economy and Budget

The Cato Institute, a libertarian-leaning group, called Mr. Pence a “champion tax cutter” and lauded his “frugal” spending record. As governor, he repealed Indiana’s inheritance tax and lowered taxes on corporate income and business property. In 2010, Mr. Pence proposed a bill in the House that would have instituted a limit on federal spending, but the idea did not have enough support to pass.

Environment

In 2015, Governor Pence threatened to disobey the Obama administration’s orders to lower carbon emissions unless the regulations underwent extensive changes. Mr. Pence said the regulations would “raise electricity costs on Hoosiers, result in less reliable electricity and impede economic growth and prosperity in Indiana and the rest of the country.” He said the Clean Power Plan was “ill conceived and poorly constructed,” and he accused the Environmental Protection Agency of going beyond its legal authority in enacting the rules under the plan. Under Governor Pence, Indiana joined several other states that have tried to block the Clean Power Plan in court.

Education

Mr. Pence was one of only 25 Republican congressmen who voted against President George W. Bush’s No Child Left Behind policy. As governor, he challenged conservative Republicans in the State Senate to support legislation to establish a preschool program that would primarily serve children in poor families. He vocally supported school choice, locally set learning standards, and pushed to direct state support toward technical and vocational education programs.

Pat Toomey's sanctuary city bill fails to advance

The Senate failed to pass Pennsylvania Senator Pat Toomey’s legislation to bar some federal funds from cities that refuse to cooperate with federal immigration laws. Do you think that cities, which are under no obligation to enforce federal law, should be denied funds if they do not cooperate with deportation requests from the federal government?

http://www.mcall.com/news/local/elections/mc-pat-toomey-sanctuary-city-senate-vote-20160706-story.html

Legislature grants special license plate fundraising privileges to select nonprofits

One of the methods lawmakers use to associate their names with certain interests or causes: granting select nonprofits the privilege of using specialty license plate sales to raise money. Here is a list of the bills from the current legislative session authorizing this for certain groups or causes:

 

House Bill 5586: Authorize autism specialty license plate; give profits to advocacy group

Introduced by Rep. Tom Barrett (R), to authorize a specialty license plate promoting autism awareness, and give the profits to a private advocacy organization. Referred to committee, no further action at this time.

Senate Bill 808: Authorize new specialty license plate; give profits to MADD

Introduced by Sen. Tonya Schuitmaker (R), to authorize a new specialty license plate, with the profits given to the Mothers Against Drunk Driving organization. Referred to committee, no further action at this time.

House Bill 5349: Authorize a no-kill animal shelters license plate; give profits to advocacy group

Introduced by Rep. Charles Brunner (D), to authorize a specialty license plate promoting animal shelters that don’t use euthanasia, and give the profits to a private organization campaigning for this. Referred to committee, no further action at this time.

House Bill 5224: Authorize a prostate awareness license plate; give profits to advocacy group

Introduced by Rep. Paul Muxlow (R), to authorize a prostrate cancer awareness specialty license plate, and give the profits to a particular foundation named in the bill (PCUPS Foundation). Referred to committee, no further action at this time.

House Bill 5204: Authorize new specialty license plate; give profits to libraries

Introduced by Rep. Edward McBroom (R), to authorize a new libraries specialty license plate, with the profits delivered public libraries. Referred to committee, no further action at this time.

House Bill 5108: Authorize a snowsports industry license plate; give profits to industry group

Introduced by Rep. Lee Chatfield (R), to authorize a snowsports industry specialty license plate, and give the profits to a trade and lobbyist organization called the Michigan Snowsports Industries Association. Referred to committee, no further action at this time.

House Bill 5083: Authorize new specialty license plate; give profits to Knights of Columbus

Introduced by Rep. Peter Lucido (R), to authorize a new Knights of Columbus specialty license plate, with the profits delivered to that organization. Referred to committee, no further action at this time.

House Bill 5082: Authorize new specialty license plate; give profits to Lions Club

Introduced by Rep. Peter Lucido (R), to authorize a Lions Club specialty license plate, with the net revenue going to the Lions Club. Referred to committee, no further action at this time.

House Bill 4932: Authorize a Kiwanis specialty license plate; give profits to Kiwanis Club

Introduced by Rep. Peter Lucido (R), to authorize a Kiwanis Club specialty license plate, with the net revenue going to the Kiwanis Club. Referred to committee, no further action at this time.

Senate Bill 367: Authorize a Thin Blue Line specialty license plate; give profits to advocacy group

Introduced by Sen. Mike Nofs (R), to authorize a Thin Blue Line specialty license plate, with the net revenue going to the “Thin Blue Line” organization, to be used solely to assist and support the families of injured or deceased law enforcement officers within the state. Reported from committee, pending before full Senate.

Senate Bill 308: Authorize black Greek letter organizations specialty license plate; give profits to United Negro College Fund

Introduced by Sen. Coleman Young, II (D), to authorize a specialty license plate honoring several African American fraternities and sororities specified in the bill, with the premium revenue going to the United Negro College Fund. Referred to committee, no further action at this time.

Senate Bill 264: Authorize wild turkey specialty license plate; give profits to advocacy group

Introduced by Sen. Wayne Schmidt (R), to authorize a specialty license plate honoring the National Wild Turkey Federation, with the premium revenue going to that organization. Referred to committee, no further action at this time.

Senate Bill 223 and House Bill 4360: Authorize Women’s Health license plate; use profits for government programs

Introduced by Sen. Hoon-Yung Hopgood (D) and Rep. Pam Faris (D), respectively, to require the Secretary of State to develop a Women’s Health license plate, with fees collected from its sale added to amounts spent for government programs to reduce unintended pregnancies, reduce child obesity, reduce sexually transmitted diseases and more. Referred to committee, no further action at this time.

House Bill 4348: Authorize Girl Scouts specialty license plate; give profits to Scouts

Introduced by Rep. Pam Faris (D), to authorize a specialty license plate honoring the Girl Scouts of America, with the premium revenue going to that organization. Referred to committee, no further action at this time.

Senate Bill 186: Authorize professional sports teams specialty license plates; give profits to team charities

Introduced by Sen. Jim Stamas (R), to authorize a specialty license plate for professional sports teams, including the Detroit Red Wings, Detroit Lions, Detroit Pistons, Detroit Tigers and the Michigan International Speedway. Proceeds from the sale of the license plates would go to charitable organizations created by these entities. Passed 35 to 1 in the Senate on May 26, 2015, referred to House committee.

Senate Bill 76: Authorize new specialty license plate; give profits to private organization

Introduced by Sen. Vincent Gregory (D), to authorize a new women veterans specialty license plate, and turn over the profits to the American Cancer Society. Referred to committee, no further action at this time.

House Bill 5447: Cap the number of fundraising specialty license plates

Introduced by Rep. Peter Pettalia (R), to cap the number of specialty fundraising license plates at 10, and revise details of this program including the amount an interest must pay to get this privilege, and how many of their plates must sell each year to keep it. Passed 90 to 18 in the House, referred to committee in the Senate.

House returns to resume a bitter fight over gun control

Congress will be taking up gun control this week. Do you support banning people placed on certain government lists, but who have not been arrested or even charged with a crime, from being able to purchase firearms?

http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/politics/2016/07/04/house-returns-resume-bitter-fight-over-gun-control-republicans-ryan-democrats/86669656/

Gov. Scott Walker at odds with Assembly Republicans over how to fix road funding shortfall

In Wisconsin, Gov. Scott Walker is standing firm against raising the gas tax without cutting taxes elsewhere. Some legislators are pushing to increase the gas tax to fund already-scheduled projects. Do you support a higher gas tax if there are no offsetting cuts in other taxes?

http://fox6now.com/2016/06/28/gov-scott-walker-at-odds-with-top-republicans-over-how-to-fix-road-funding-shortfall/

The Supreme Court’s Conservative Run Is Over

With recent decisions upholding affirmative action and striking down abortion restrictions, some say the Supreme Court’s conservative era is over. Do you think it is proper to look at the court as having a “conservative” or “liberal” tendency? Is the court too politicized, or are political considerations inevitable on controversial questions?

://www.politico.com/magazine/story/2016/06/supreme-court-abortion-decision-rightward-run-over-213996

Sen. Bob Casey does an 'about-face' on gun-control, report

Pennsylvania Senator Bob Casey, once an opponent of gun control, says his views on this issue are changing. He is now willing to support some gun control measures, such as banning rifles with military-style features. Do you think Sen. Casey is on the right track? Or is he simply bowing to public pressure?

http://blog.pennlive.com/capitol-notebook/2016/06/sen_bob_casey_does_an_about-fa.html

Sen. Mark Warner: How Brexit Threatens American Trade

According to Virginia Senator Mark Warner, “Regardless of the Brexit vote, global trade remains essential to America’s economic durability and leadership in the world.” But he also says that the government should do more to assist those negatively affected by trade. What do you think? Is global trade a net win for the U.S.?

http://time.com/4382313/brexit-american-trade/

 

Tim Kaine is sitting pretty in Hillary Clinton’s veepstakes

 

 

Virginia Senator Tim Kaine could be Hillary Clinton’s choice for vice president. He is seen as a “safe” pick – a mainstream Democrat who is from a potential swing state. Do you think Sen. Kaine would make a good vice president? Or should Clinton choose someone else? https

://www.washingtonpost.com/news/the-fix/wp/2016/06/24/tim-kaine-is-sitting-pretty-in-hillary-clintons-veepstakes/

 

Mark Pocan, Gwen Moore, Tammy Baldwin participate in Congress gun control sit-in

Sen. Tammy Baldwin and other members of the Wisconsin congressional delegation joined the gun control “sit in” on the House floor recently. Do you support more restrictions on gun ownership? Do you think this kind of event is a good way to bring attention to an issue?

http://host.madison.com/ct/news/local/govt-and-politics/election-matters/mark-pocan-gwen-moore-tammy-baldwin-participate-in-congress-gun/article_1b0c55a2-8cc7-57e6-8849-cf865977c1c4.html

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