I met and talked with Chris Savage, the owner of Eclectablog, at Netroots. I read Eclectablog for Michigan politics but the site does national issues, too. Full disclosure – I also have donated to the site, will donate again, and have emailed them on public school issues. I set up the meeting with Chris, so this wasn’t a chance encounter.
I love state-specific blogs because I firmly believe Democrats and liberals don’t spend enough time and energy on state law and policy, and Eclectablog is a great one.
Eclectablog is ten years old this year. Chris started with a different blog, but he “revealed too much personal stuff” on that initial outing, had some blow-back regarding the work he does for a living so shut down the first and started a second, presumably older and wiser. He doesn’t consider himself a journalist although he has done some original reporting on the site, MSNBC has picked up his work, and he pays his writers.
On that subject, I know we do a lot of media criticism on this site, but the truth is I love newspapers. I pay for three (national, state and local). I think journalism is good, important, difficult work and believe journalists should be paid for doing that work. I get a little uncomfortable with the media criticism too, because I think it can veer into Palinesque “lamestream media” sloganeering and I don’t think that’s fair or accurate. Most working journalists don’t make anywhere near what the tippy-top celebrity tier make, and that is also true of doctors and lawyers and novelists and musicians and many other kinds of workers.
Chris and I also talked about the Michigan governor’s race (after my detour into blogospheric navel gazing and the nature of work.) Chris says Governor Snyder can be defeated but voters in Michigan are going to have to decide if “running government like a business” is working out for them. The polling seems to show the race is pretty much tied up. Winning in Michigan (and Ohio and Wisconsin and Pennsylvania and Florida) would do a lot towards repairing some of the damage the 2010 Tea Party wave did at the state level. Governor Snyder isn’t a Tea Partier, but either is Governor Kasich and in many ways the corporate wing of the GOP are doing much more lasting damage at the state level than the Tea Party could ever do.
PPP’s newest Michigan poll finds a tied race for governor this fall between incumbent Republican Rick Snyder and Democrat Mark Schauer, along with a close race for the open Senate seat between Republican Terri Lynn Land and Democrat Gary Peters.
In the Governor’s race, Snyder and Schauer are tied at 40% apiece despite Snyder’s highly negative job performance rating. 37% of Michigan voters approve of Snyder’s performance while 54% disapprove. However, while voters have a negative opinion of the incumbent, they tend to have no opinion at all on Schauer. Among those that do, Schauer has a slightly positive rating with 27% favorable and 24% unfavorable. 49% of voters have no opinion either way. Schauer actually leads Snyder within every age group except older than 65, where Snyder leads with 49% to Schauer’s 38%.