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Posted on Thu, Oct 28, 2010 : 6:03 a.m.

Questions surround Republican state House candidate Mark Ouimet's academic credentials

By Ryan J. Stanton

Republican state House candidate Mark Ouimet earned the master's degree he lists in his campaign literature from a Louisiana correspondence school that was raided by the FBI and determined to be a fraudulent diploma mill at one point, has learned.

Ouimet, a Washtenaw County commissioner running for Michigan's 52nd District House seat against Democrat Christine Green, acknowledged in interviews he obtained his master's in business administration from the now-defunct LaSalle University in Mandeville, La.

Ouimet obtained his MBA in the years following the federal crackdown, when it appears LaSalle was beginning efforts to clean up its act and distance itself from its fraudulent past. However, much skepticism still surrounded the school, and despite curriculum changes, it never received accreditation before going out of business.

According to media reports, the FBI raided the Louisiana school in July 1996 following a five-year investigation, finding it made bogus claims about being accredited and defrauded thousands of students. The school, with only a handful of workers, pulled in roughly $36 million from selling phony degrees from 1989 to 1996, the FBI said in court filings.


Washtenaw County Commissioner Mark Ouimet, R-Scio Township.

Ryan J. Stanton |

LaSalle's founder, Thomas Kirk, pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit tax evasion, wire fraud and credit card fraud. He was sentenced to five years in prison.

Ouimet said he enrolled at LaSalle in 1997 and completed his online degree in 1999. He denied knowing anything about the university's reputation as a fraudulent diploma mill or the fact that it was never an accredited academic institution.

"That I don't know," Ouimet said. "I mean, what I did is I searched for something that I could do and still work, and where I didn't have to go back and take additional classes. Is this at the academic level of the University of Michigan? No. But I don't say that it is."

At the time, Ouimet was working for Northwood University, where he served in various administrative roles before he resigned in 2002 for undisclosed reasons.

Allen Ezell, a retired FBI agent and leading authority on phony diplomas, said he remembers well the FBI's investigations into LaSalle. He said any degree handed out by LaSalle before the raid is "utterly worthless," and he questions the legitimacy of any degree after that, too.

"I don't know if any degrees from LaSalle can be viewed by the academic community as legitimate because of the foundation on which the school was built," Ezell said. "If the house isn't built on a firm foundation, the house is no good."

During a recent interview, Ouimet produced a copy of his diploma from LaSalle, which states he graduated summa cum laude in 1999. He also produced a transcript dated March 9, 2000, showing he completed 35 credits and maintained a 4.0 GPA. 

However, he said it wasn't a rigorous academic curriculum and he certainly doesn't flaunt the degree.

"This is an online university and I took an online university because I was working," Ouimet said, adding he wanted to take business classes to further build on his personal knowledge and background. He stressed he was unaware of the school's accreditation status and said he never used the degree to get a job or a promotion.

The Midland Daily News reported upon Ouimet's departure from Northwood in 2002 that he had served as vice president of administration before he was named chancellor in August 1999, the same year he obtained his MBA. Ouimet said the degree had nothing to do with it.

Ouimet, who holds a bachelor's degree from Northwood, also received an honorary doctorate from Northwood during his tenure there. His title then became "Dr. Ouimet." He said he never asked anyone to call him that, but the title shows up on university documents and other places.

Washtenaw County Democratic Party officials have questioned Ouimet's academic credentials since noticing recently it doesn't state anywhere on Ouimet's campaign website or in his campaign materials where the LaSalle University he attended is located. Democratic Party officials checked with the only accredited LaSalle University they could find, which is located in Pennsylvania, and discovered there was no record of Ouimet ever being there.

Federal authorities believe LaSalle University's founder named it purposely to be confused with the more reputable LaSalle University in Pennsylvania.

Experts say there's little question the Louisiana school was a fraudulent operation from 1989 to 1996, during which time students were able to pay thousands of dollars to obtain degrees requiring little or no academic work. But it appears to have operated legally within the bounds of Louisiana's lax state laws in the few years it was still in business following the FBI raid.

John Bear, a San Francisco-area writer and expert on diploma mills, said he devoted a fair amount of space to the LaSalle scandal in his book titled, "Bears' Guide to Earning Degrees by Distance Learning." He questions the worth of any degree from LaSalle, as well as anyone naive enough to think a master’s degree can be earned without doing much work.

"When people are exposed (for having a degree from LaSalle), what the person often says is, 'Well, how could I have known?'" Bear said.

Bear argued, "even the tiniest bit of due diligence" by anyone seeking a degree from LaSalle would have revealed the school for what it is.

"It's not a degree that anyone would accept," Bear said. "But I suppose there are some well-meaning — generally not really bright — people who believe everything they're told."

The LaSalle scandal made national news in publications like USA Today and the Chronicle of Higher Education in the late 1990s.

Two months after the FBI raid in 1996, the U.S. attorney's office released an 18-count indictment against Kirk, who set up LaSalle under the auspices of the World Christian Church to shield the school from state regulations and taxes.

To maintain the school's image as a Christian institution, Kirk had built a temple, laced brochures with religious references, and claimed to be a church minister under a vow of poverty, even as he lived in a $1.5 million mansion and drove a Lexus, according to reports.

In a quest to erase its past reputation, LaSalle announced in 1997 it had formed a new governing board of high-profile community members. But none of the new board members had experience in education administration, according to reports in The Times-Picayune newspaper in New Orleans, which chronicled the school's demise.

Later that same month, federal prosecutors filed felony tax evasion charges against LaSalle's executive director and related charges against a former board member.

By July 1997, LaSalle had moved to shed the skin of its fraudulent past by transferring the school to a new nonprofit corporation, leaving its old shell to deal with tax and legal liabilities. The new LaSalle Education Corp. took over all educational responsibilities from the World Christian Church, removing the school's religious trappings.

That same month, the U.S. Marshal's Service auctioned off Kirk's white-columned, Mandeville mansion for about $1.3 million, while Kirk remained in prison.

In October 1998, LaSalle's leaders announced they were working on seeking accreditation recognized by the U.S. Department of Education, hiring new faculty, streamlining course offerings and revamping curricula. Pat Brister, a prominent Republican who later served as chairwoman of the Louisiana Republican Party, chaired LaSalle's board of trustees.

Skepticism about LaSalle remained, according to media reports. A loophole in Louisiana state licensing laws, which exempted universities owned by nonprofits, prevented state officials from monitoring the school's activities and assessing its legitimacy.

In 2000, LaSalle settled a class-action lawsuit brought by former students for an undisclosed amount of money. One student sued LaSalle separately in 2000, claiming school leaders told her in late 1998 that she would receive a doctorate degree from an accredited school.

In June 2000, LaSalle was officially denied accreditation after a two-year drive. Two months later, school officials announced LaSalle would be changing its name to Orion College. But in late 2001, after a long battle against slumping enrollment and public skepticism, officials announced the short-lived Orion College would be shutting its doors.

Since its demise, the school's reputation continues to live on, with controversial reports surfacing from time to time of public officials claiming to have legitimate degrees from LaSalle.

A National Nuclear Security Administration employee in 2004 admitted his master’s degree from LaSalle was a "joke" when questioned by investigators from the U.S. General Accounting Office. For about $5,000, he said, he obtained the degree based on life experience, courses he had taken previously in the military, and courses for which he read books and wrote papers.

The GAO's investigation led to a report that found 28 high-ranking federal officials held degrees from diploma mills like LaSalle where, in exchange for money, the so-called universities handed out degrees backed by little or no academic work. Armed with a bogus degree, some employees were able to qualify for promotions and higher pay — and in some cases, the government actually paid the cost of the degree, according to the report.

"Unaccredited schools, and the quality of education they offer, vary significantly," the GAO report concluded. "At one end of the spectrum are schools that offer standard curricula traditionally found at accredited universities. Other schools, commonly referred to as diploma mills, sell academic degrees based upon life experience or substandard or negligible academic work. Some diploma mills require no academic work at all and merely sell degrees for a fee."

Ryan J. Stanton covers government and politics for Reach him at or 734-623-2529.


Tom Wieder

Mon, Nov 1, 2010 : 8:41 a.m.

Audrey- Thank you for your very thoughtful comments. As I understand your reasoning, it doesn't matter that Ouimet misrepesents his qualifications for office, because others do so, too. And being slick, all appearance and no substance, is okay, because John Edwards is, too. And I certainly don't fault him for being "very, very handsome," I just think it's more of a qualification to be an actor or male model. But, what I'm still puzzled by, is you don't mention any program he has, any position he's taken, or any accomplishment he's had in all his years in the public eye that makes you want to vote for him. You mention exactly one position he took, and you disagreed with him on it. So, besides being "handsome" and "thoughtful and respectful," what has he done to earn your vote?


Sun, Oct 31, 2010 : 4:14 p.m.

Those who have earned an MBA with a lot of hard work and study, probably feel more strongly that it is a betrayal of trust to claim a degree that you did not work for. Add that to "gaming" the system to maximize your reimbursements and you have to question the intergity of the candidate.


Sun, Oct 31, 2010 : 2:31 p.m.

As a registered republican I an very dismayed at Mark displaying a masters degree from a correspondence institution. I would never post a degree "earned" by correspondence - Mark - come on - a masters degree is earned by attending classes and working day and night in front of professors - not this way - delete the reference to this degree as the institution is suspect anyways - it never received accreditation - so the degree is mute - you do not have an MBA.


Sun, Oct 31, 2010 : 12:34 p.m.

@Tom Weider, "Talk about being bamboozled! You're the one's that been taken in by a good haircut, a friendly handshake and a nice suit. As more and more voters have learned during this election, that's all there is to Mark Ouimet - oh, except for taking thousands of dollars in taxpayer money he wasn't entitled to and misrepresenting his record and his credentials - there is that to Ouimet." Dear Mr. Weider, I don't know Ms. Green. My references to "honest" are in direct relation to prior my face-to-face interactions with Mr. Ouimet. You seem to be really interested in mind-reading and characterizing the motives of those who disagree with your choices. It sounds like you have a need to control others. Sounds like jealousy, too, (of Mr. Ouimet), since no one has criticized his good looks before you. He is very, very handsome. But, I'd still vote for him if he was fugly. Speaking of a good haircuit, a friendly handshake and a nice suit--you forgot the smooth talk. Clearly, you were thinking of Bill Clinton and John Edwards? Those two bamboozled the American public, plenty enough to last the worst candidates from any party for years to come. Pardon me, I'm now the one who is "mind reading motives." Maybe if you call Mr. Ouimet, he can hook you up with his barber, or if you don't take kindly to referrals from that party, try John Edwards for a political role model. Good haircut, nice handshake, nice suit. And slimy as heck. Cheers. Your rebuttal (that no one solicited) just makes undecided and independent voters favor Mr. Ouimet all the more. Thanks, for boosting his campaign!! I'm guessing the legal system would be far more impressed with your hyper-analysis of political rhetoric than the average voter. Believe me, a lot of us are weary of attorney politicians.

Tom Wieder

Sun, Oct 31, 2010 : 9:22 a.m.

@Audrey- Your comments are about as substantive as Ouimet's record. The only specific thing you mention that Ouimet has done is work to pass a millage that you opposed! I agree, what degrees a candidate has do not determine if he or she will be a good official, but, apparently, Ouimet thinks they're important enough to present them as part of his campaign, so he is asking, in part, to be judged by them. Unfortunately, he fails to mention that his bachelor's is from a school that wasn't yet accredited, and his MBA is bogus! That's "honest" campaigning? And is it "clean and honest" campaigning to repeatedly imply that Christine Green has "outstanding tax obligations" that were fully taken care of in the 1980's? Talk about being bamboozled! You're the one's that been taken in by a good haircut, a friendly handshake and a nice suit. As more and more voters have learned during this election, that's all there is to Mark Ouimet - oh, except for taking thousands of dollars in taxpayer money he wasn't entitled to and misrepresenting his record and his credentials - there is that to Ouimet.


Sat, Oct 30, 2010 : 8:26 p.m.

Mark Ouimet would be extremely qualified to be the next state house representative, even if he was a high school dropout. For years, he has participated in Ann Arbor area business developments. I first met him when he worked closely with the Ann Arbor Schools in the late 1990s to pass a millage for the schools (a millage that I later opposed). I'm not voting for a state house representative based on how many degrees they have earned. Mark Ouimet has a history as an involved citizen and resident. He has been thoughtful and respectful in his elected positions. He has not behaved like some politicians and their allies who will do ANYTHING to ANYONE, incuding stab their own mother in the back to get elected. I'm more affected by Ouimet's history of clean and honest campaigns for office than I am affected by any history on his actual education. There have been more than a few candidates in the opposing political party whose education credentials have been unsubstantiated. It's not hard to notice how a certain political party and its elements reach for the reputation jugular in attempts to discredit anyone that threatens its agenda. How wonderful that no one needs a degree to see brazen political disingenuousness like that and even more mindful of the Meeks vs Crist carnival down south. Some of us don't want to be bamboozled to the grave. So, we do what America allows more than any other nation on the planet--we think for ourselves and make our own choices. Key word=OUR OWN CHOICES, not the choice of a group of reputation slamming political pundits who couldn't form a brain among the entire lot that had an ounce of credibility. Yep, I'm pretty sure I'll be voting for Ouimet, even if they later find out he is a high school dropout.

David Briegel

Sat, Oct 30, 2010 : 9:42 a.m.

Chase, I must admit I was pleasantly surprised at your behavior! I enjoyed the session even though I was expecting a debate. The audience, small as it was, involvement was also enjoyable. To all the Republican posters who believe that is doing a hatchet job on their endorsed candidate, Get Real! It is news because Mark made it news. It was just a couple weeks ago that a poster here related the story of Mark insisting on being referred to as DOCTOR Ouimete. The irony of all the fiscal conservatives supporting resume padding and expense account padding. YOU would NEVER do that if it wers a Democrat and you know that is the truth!


Fri, Oct 29, 2010 : 5:36 p.m.

I voted for Mark absentee, and now I see what a mistake this was - who is the real Mark Ouimet? This feels like a hangover headache. I found out I can change my absentee ballot vote - they don't get counted until Tuesday -they told me :" Just go to Clerks offices and request a new ballot". Clerks' Offices must be open 9 am to 2 pm on Saturday and Monday before 4 pm - tell them you want to destroy the old one & get a new one. HOO -


Fri, Oct 29, 2010 : 10:49 a.m.

Funny how the left is so interested in credentials of a republican -- where was all this concern with Obama?


Fri, Oct 29, 2010 : 10:45 a.m.

Christine Green's camp must be awfully worried to pull this stunt so close to the election. Mark has strong integrity and solid ethics, which given the latest mudslinging, I would have to wonder about Christine Green's integrity and ethics if her supporters are behind this.

E. Manuel Goldstein

Fri, Oct 29, 2010 : 9:40 a.m.

Overcharging Washtenaw County taxpayers for questionable/ineligible per diems and other costs: $35,000 Recouping some of the largesse from the IRS through donating the ill gotten gains to "charity": $thousands$ Getting an MBA from a phony Louisiana diploma mill, and running for state office while citing one's financial acumen: PRICELESS


Thu, Oct 28, 2010 : 10:40 p.m.

Whew! Welcome to politics 2010! Where wise men fear to tread, fools rush in. Good luck to trying to clean all that egg off your face from the Ouimet endorsement. Another Republican businessman with credibility problems?!? Gee - haven't seen any of those lately (apologies to Wall Street), have we?

Macabre Sunset

Thu, Oct 28, 2010 : 10:04 p.m.

Looks like Stanton is still dialed into Green's press release folder. It's a shame this blog is party to the standard negative campaigning we see so much of in the last week of a race.


Thu, Oct 28, 2010 : 5:49 p.m.

On one hand, matters like county per diems and diploma mills (Ouiment) and old back tax issues (Green) represent second-tier concerns for voters. After all, I'd willingly vote for candidates with a dodgy 'advanced' degrees and questionable per diem habits IF there existed strong indications they would consistently make good votes on legislation and also advocate for much needed changes in public policy. I'd accept that kind of trade-off. On the other hand, the raw hypocrisy of Ouimet supporters is awe-inspiring. Any intelligent person reading these comments quickly understands that if a Democrat had been called out for such behaviors instead of Ouimet, there is no question that these same GOP defenders would switch gears radically. They'd howl loudly that per diem overindulgences and diploma mill degrees constitute the central pressing issues of our era. Nothing else would matter. Question: When the Washtenaw GOP, on Ouimet's behalf, threw mud at Christine Green (perhaps hoping to preempt the per diem issue), did they not expect that extra attention would then be paid to their own candidate's background?

Tom Wieder

Thu, Oct 28, 2010 : 4:17 p.m.

@Let's get Real - " is quick to regurgitate strategicly released news stories that support discrediting people's lives." Ann, which ENDORSED Ouimet, is writing the stories, not "regurgitating" them from elsewhere. "the cloak of dispicable trial lawyer tactcs" - which tactics are those, and what evidence do you have that Christine Green has ever employed them and what would they have to do with this issue? "slanderous behavior" - You do know that to be "slanderous," a statement has to be false? Can you point to any false element in anything that Christine Green has said or has printed? @George Houchens_ "Mark Ouimet has been in several government positions over the years. So... why is this now an issue?... immediately before an election in which he is reported to lead? More election tricks by the Democrats?... like the questions about his expense reports that "someone" was concerned about? Fits with the tactics the Democrats are using in other state campaigns. But it stinks!" Answer - because some of these things hadn't happened yet when he was on A2 City Council 20 years ago, and he was lucky enough not to get caught until now during his tenure on the County Commission. What exactly is the "dirty trick?" Bringing up factually correct information that some voters might find relevant in judging a candidate's performance and character? That's called a democratic election process. Oh, and for the umpteenth time, did you notice that these things are being reported by an organization that ENDORSED Ouimet for election? So, they're dirty-tricking the guy they want to win? You say Ouimet was "reported to lead" in the election. Reported where? There have been no public polls. And so what?

George Houchens

Thu, Oct 28, 2010 : 4:11 p.m.

John Q: To answer your question in an earlier comment, the tactic of questioning a candidate's credentials at the 11th hour is scuzzy politics because it, deserved or not, puts the candidate on the defensive and also may sway undecided voters. As a former recruiter for the high tech industry, I know that about 20% of all resumes have some misinformation in them. And that does not include claims about accomplishments!!! So, if you look hard enough at Ms. Green's resume, you will probably find some similar issues.

George Houchens

Thu, Oct 28, 2010 : 3:49 p.m.

Mark Ouimet has been in several government positions over the years. So... why is this now an issue?... immediately before an election in which he is reported to lead? More election tricks by the Democrats?... like the questions about his expense reports that "someone" was concerned about? Fits with the tactics the Democrats are using in other state campaigns. But it stinks!

Cedric Richner

Thu, Oct 28, 2010 : 3:04 p.m.

It's a non-issue and a non-story. Stick to the issues, please, Ann


Thu, Oct 28, 2010 : 2:53 p.m.

The whole raison d'etre of these eleventh hour surprise stories is to influence the undecideds in the middle. The people defending one side or the other won't be swayed by this. For the who can't make up their mind, all they need is a little nudge. This provides that nudge. I just wish Mr Weider would have the intellectual veracity to own up to this. If these people were truly about providing us with relevant data about their opponents, they would have done so months ago. Let's call this what it is: Old fashioned, mud slinging, last minute, underhanded political ploy. (Notice that I didn't add Dem or Repub.) Whichever side choses to practice such nonsense should be ashamed of themselves.

Lets Get Real

Thu, Oct 28, 2010 : 2:18 p.m.

Let's Get Real about this story: is quick to regurgitate strategicly released news stories that support discrediting people's lives. And we wonder why no one wants to run for office! Let's Get Real about Ms Green: Anyone who wants to shed the cloak of dispicable trial lawyer tactcs and actually make us believe the non-specific gobbledigook in her "plan", should be outraged and speaking out against this type of slanderous behavior - if she is not behind it - rather than sitting back with a Chershire Cat Grin, lapping up milk and honey. Let's Get Real about Mark Ouimet: I've seen him, out in the community, at events, talking to people to hear their needs and concerns and brainstorm solutions with them. I've never seen Ms. Green - anywhere - wouldn't know her if fell over her. Hmmmmm Let's Get Real about Poitics: It is disgusting, degrading, desperate behvior that drives someone to win with this level of integrity. And for this, we are expected to look up to our representatives in government? This is so low, looking down is a challenge. Respect is earned and certainly not like this. Let'sGet Real - I can't wait until his is all over.

Chase Ingersoll

Thu, Oct 28, 2010 : 2:16 p.m.

I would like to contrast the Ouimet/Green campaigns with the I2 campaign (Irwin/Ingersoll). For all of you who were not there last night, the Irwin/Ingersoll coffee/forum at turned out to be a very interesting discussion for all that attended. I think that Jeff would agree that it was informative and completely devoid of any pandering, slandering AND OBSCENE GESTURES. The discussion was without a moderator, without any rules and it just flowed naturally from topic to topic. But I think the reason that a discussion of this nature was possible is because from the point of our nomination, Jeff and I have both acknowledged that the people in the district are all perfectly literate and are perfectly able to inform them selves of issues to the degree they feel necessary to vote on Tuesday, without Jeff or I thinking that there is something that they need to know about either of us that will make a difference in how they are going to vote. The ideological liberals that comprise the majority of the 53rd District know that Irwin shares their principle (sp?) political values and that Chase Ingersoll represents a different set of political principles and values. Even in my most narcissistic moment, I could not believe that by knocking on a door in the 53rd Dist, that I, by some brilliant intellectual persuasion, or force of personality would be able to convince a single voter to contradict their ideological leanings and vote for me. Nor would I want them to. People should take their own experiences, look around the world and with an open mind absorb as much information as possible and make a decision that is logically defensible. I think that both Jeff and I and the members of our audience last night did precisely that. Sorry you missed it.


Thu, Oct 28, 2010 : 2:14 p.m.

The worst part is that next Wednesday they all start campaigning again! When does it end? Republican, Democrat...Republican, Democrat....


Thu, Oct 28, 2010 : 2:05 p.m.

@say it plain, No one has proven that his per diem waere illegal have they. There were some dubious ones and some were for a democrat not even his. I FOR ONE DON'T GIVE A RATS REAREND WHERE HE GO HIS DEGREE.

Tom Wieder

Thu, Oct 28, 2010 : 1:57 p.m.

Roadman- You are such an apologist for Ouimet, it's remarkable. Yes, many people are getting online degrees these days, but many of them are legitimate and have some standards. I have no quarrel with that, with new ways for people to get additional education. But this sure looks like Ouimet acquired a "degree" without really acquiring the usual education associated with it. As for "finally acknowledging" the tax liens - nice try. Christine, her campaign and I acknowledged and discussed them publicly weeks ago. Let's say that the actions that led to the tax liens amounted to "financial irresponsibility," and are attributable to Christine (it was really her husband's doing), they were resolved over 20 years ago, with the Greens fully satisfying their obligations. Part of the problem is that Ouimet's (excuse me, the totally "independent" Republican Party's) attacks on Green make it sound like she has current, outstanding, unresolved tax issues, which she doesn't.


Thu, Oct 28, 2010 : 1:54 p.m.

@Roadman Greens problems happened 25 years ago. Mr Oimet has touted his degree for 10 years. It would never have been an issue if he had stopped citing it in his resume, but now it is.

Justice In Action

Thu, Oct 28, 2010 : 1:53 p.m.

Mark Ouimet may be a nice man but why in the world would we want him as a representative at the state House? It is very hard to admit that we have been fooled by someone we have supported and trusted with County and other public business. He may have attended over a thousand meetings across the County but what did he do besides get public recognition for being there and per diem? If you request and receive money that you're not entitled to, don't try to justify that by saying you gave the money to a charity; especially when you are vice-chair of that charity's Board. Don't get a bogus degree from an on-line university and then say you didn't know much about their reputation. If you don't know what you're entitled to or how to research educational programs; what good will you do us in the state House? Whether he is Democrat or Republican really shouldn't matter at this point because his own responses demonstrate lack of ethics and responsibility for his own life and County business. It seems that much of what he's done in the County has been about resume building and moving up the political chain. I hope you vote wisely on November 2nd.


Thu, Oct 28, 2010 : 1:27 p.m.

Who do these guys think they are kidding? I guess Mark could be a poster boy for the Flim Flam Man. How disgusting! No wonder we have become so apathetic.


Thu, Oct 28, 2010 : 12:54 p.m.

Tom: Weider: I'm glad you are finally acknowledging tax liens. It shows past financial irresponsibility of Chris Green and her husband. Getting an online degree is very popular now, especially for military servicepersons.

say it plain

Thu, Oct 28, 2010 : 12:50 p.m.

oops. I meant "I can't imagine feeling okay about him as a candidate now" sorry! But, wow, really, this news to me inspires images of schoolkids watching and snickering at how 'busted' this guy now is :-)

say it plain

Thu, Oct 28, 2010 : 12:42 p.m.

Wow, this is a big deal. If Mr. Ouimet hadn't been working *for a University* at the time he claims he was 'ignorant' about the bogus nature of LaSalle, then perhaps he could wiggle his way out of looking like a total liar and resume-padder wannabe-wonk. But given that he was likely receiving "The Chronicle of Higher Education" in his inbox lol, he can't really claim he 'never knowingly had intercourse with a degree-selling mill' very easily :-) Quite the indictment, especially combined with the scandalous use of taxpayer funds for ineligible 'work-related' per diems. I can't feeling okay about him as a candidate now!


Thu, Oct 28, 2010 : 12:19 p.m.

I do hope this will give another reason why they should change their rediculous endorsement of Ouimet. What more do we need to know about this man's ethics? Do we really want this sort of person representing us?

John Q

Thu, Oct 28, 2010 : 12:18 p.m.

I'm confused. If this is a non-story and no big deal, how can the story be at the same time an "11th hour hit piece" and Democratic "dirty tricks"? Is the assumption that all voters are idiots? Or you're afraid that there's something to the story and it's unfair to roll it out now?


Thu, Oct 28, 2010 : 12:03 p.m.

This is a perfect commentary on the state on elective politics today. As we get closer to the election, you don't even see a Pepsi commercial anymore. They're all political commercials and they're 97% negative. I abouyt fell off my chair last night when I saw a commercial that was actually positive about the person running for office....without going negative against their opponent. Say what you will about Ouimet and all of this stuff coming up before the election. Say what you will about the assertion Christine Green doesn't pay taxes. It all says something about the entire absurd process, and the character of many of the people engaged in it. Dod you know members of congress receive between $1.2 and $4.5 million as an allowance over an ABOVE their $177,000 salary? They are required to document everty dime. You will see Pelosi and John Baynerd alike documenting taxi fare, bottled water (at $2.00) and everything else. Meaning they never TOUCH their base salary. It's not Ouimet, it's the entire culture of elected officials that - once elected - forget who they're serving and begin serving themselves. When are Democrats, Republicans, Independents and agnostics going to sit up and force this crap to stop? Per Diems? Why do you think its an issue anyway? Because your elected officials created the potential for abuse in the first place. Wake up people. This isn't a Democrat or Republican thing. If you think it is, you're one of those tools that responds to negative campaign ads. They ALL do their own brand of garbage proving: absolute power corrupts absolutely. I'm affiliated with no party at all. I'm just disgusted with the entire matter! In total!


Thu, Oct 28, 2010 : 11:56 a.m.

Look people, there is no way to justify Mr Ouimets choice of diploma mills. Especially when he was working at an institution that delivers the degree legitimately. Hopefully some other independent minded people will look at the facts and not hold their hands over their ears and eyes until Nov 2 comes. As to's fairness, this is news that should affect people trying to decide how to vote, it needs to be aired. The truth is obvious here, he got a diploma from a diploma mill, end of story. Now let the voters decide if this makes any difference. By the way, it does to me.


Thu, Oct 28, 2010 : 11:28 a.m.

I don't really see the issue. I think it's pretty easy to coast through many graduate programs, particularly in business. Graduate grade inflation is out of control, and I honestly think the hardest part about a graduate degree is being accepted to the program. And with most universities following the lead of these "degree mills" and jumping on board with the online degree programs, one has to wonder whether they were just ahead of the curve. That being said, you get what you pay for. If you want your credentials to have impact, get them through an accredited institution known for what you're studying. If you don't care, then do whatever floats your boat. Like I said, it's so easy to make it through ANY program, it doesn't really matter all that much. What really drives me up a wall with Green/Ouimet is the sheer volume of negative paper ads they send me. Negative ads really turn me off both candidates. I'd rather see who's more professionally qualified than who can dig up the most dirt.


Thu, Oct 28, 2010 : 11:28 a.m.

If you are voting for someone based on how many letters he has after his name, you are an idiot. Which makes me wonder why Mr Ouimet paid to get more initials after his name, using a school that had a history of fraud. As mentioned above, as he was in the Education field he probably should have done some due diligence on the place he used to get some initials after his name.


Thu, Oct 28, 2010 : 11:21 a.m.

Look people, there is no way to justify Mr Ouimets choice of diploma mills. Especially when he was working at an institution that delivers the degree legitimately. Hopefully some other independent minded people will look at the facts and not hold their hands over their ears and eyes until Nov 2 comes. As to's fairness, this is news that should affect people trying to decide how to vote, it needs to be aired. The truth is obvious here, he got a diploma from a diploma mill, end of story. Now let the voters decide if this makes any difference. By the way, it does to me.

Stephen Landes

Thu, Oct 28, 2010 : 11:18 a.m.

This seems like a silly article as it is much more about the school in question than the work of either candidate. If Mr. Ouimet's education was an important criteria for selecting a representative then maybe there would be a point to this story. As it is an educational credential is not a criteria for election and no fraud on Mr.Ouimet's part is alleged. So, what is the big deal about a a candidate who has a degree from an institution outside of Washtenaw county? I have had enough of the so-called wisdom of people with degrees from high flying schools from all parties who it seems to me have put us in an awful situation. When we're being treated to elitist commentary on the quality of the school someone attended rather than an analysis of the decisions they have made in running a company, organization, or part of our government then I suspect someone is hiding something that we really should know about.


Thu, Oct 28, 2010 : 11:12 a.m.

Dear David. Questions: Does going to "Ouimet's site" and seeing vapor suddenly make Green's statements have data and solutions? If not, once, again, why are you telling me (us) this? Just because Green's sound like some idealistic high schooler's book report on saving the world does not make them meaningful in any way. There are no solutions or data given. None of these candidates are giving us anything but politico-speak nonsense. IT


Thu, Oct 28, 2010 : 11:03 a.m.

He's a politician.What do you expect?and before you Libs and Dems get going you're no without sin yourself.

David Briegel

Thu, Oct 28, 2010 : 11:01 a.m.

independent_thinker, If you wish to see vapid, go to Mr Ouimet's site. pitiful, indeed! I know lot's of people who worked very hard to go to an accredited Univ for that MBA while holding down full time jobs. And they weren't working in Education! CMU also has an excellent program in addition to those already mentioned.


Thu, Oct 28, 2010 : 10:43 a.m.

Hi Tom, I believe I said her statements were not substantive at all, in any way shape or form, and that they were complete and utter politco-speak nonsense that amounted to a big fat zero in terms of ideas, data, or solutions. I did not say they were not substantive enough. Telling me another non-substantive statement from her opponent does not increase their validity in any way. This is exactly what's wrong with politics, a lack of objectivity, and too much emotional side-taking. I hope you see that I am being extremely objective as opposed to argumentative.


Thu, Oct 28, 2010 : 10:42 a.m.

I think Mark is a good public servant, and I would still support him and I'm a democrat. Having worked with him a good deal I respect and trust him. My question is that in 1999 were there really very many, if any, accredited on-line schools? If so, what were his other options? If not, why not EMU?

Tom Wieder

Thu, Oct 28, 2010 : 10:20 a.m.

A few points- 1. Someone asked what Christine Green's academic credentials are - B.A. and Law Degree from the University of Michigan. I'm pretty sure that it's accredited. 2. Does it matter what degrees a candidate has? I'll leave that to each voter to decide. But, if a candidate activiely presents his academic credentials in promoting his candidacy, as Ouimet does, he's asking to be judged, in part, on the quality of the credentials and the honesty of the presentation. He doesn't get a passing grade on either. 3. The story is Dem "mudslining?" ENDORSED Ouimet! So, Dems are responsible for a negative story about the opposing candidate by an organization that backs the opposing candidate? Now, that's twisted logic! Actually, give a lot of credit for journalistic integrity. The owners and managers of the organization, who control the endorsements, did not prevent the news operation from reporting a story that reflected badly on the candidate that they endorsed. That is the mark of a high-integrity news organization! 4. Ouimet says he got an online degree because "I was working." He was working at Northwood University - a business school! Why didn't he take the classes there? Or ask anyone there about LaSalle? Or participate in the part-time, weekend or onling MBA programs offerred by U-M, MSU and Wayne? Because he was more interested in putting "MBA" on his resume, without real work, than actually getting the education. 5. Not that it's relevant to a discussion of misrepresenting your qualifications, but....If you think Christine Green's proposals abour economic development, jobs and education aren't substantive enough, try out this gem of policy depth from Ouimet's campaign literature: "Mark Ouimet will help turn Michigan around and create the jobs we need today and in the future." Wow, that's specific. 6. JSA - Christine Green does pay her taxes. Based solely on her husband's income at the time, several IRS liens were placed on their house - 25 years ago! All of the taxes, and interest, were paid, and the liens released, in the 1980's. One property tax payment was made a few weeks late 6 years ago, put paid in full with late penalty and interest. Ouimet, on the other hand, improperly takes taxpayer money and spends it as he sees fit! Tom Wieder

Rodney Nanney

Thu, Oct 28, 2010 : 10:06 a.m.

Ryan, it's great that Mark Brewer and the Michigan Democrat Party have you on their speed dial list. It's very efficient as well to recycle so much organically produced material for re-use here. The article reads like a ten year old 60 minutes piece grafted on to a high school essay about Mark's curriculum vitae. The writing is not even really your style - far too verbose, like a new attorney trying too hard rather than a veteran reporter. How much of the press release that must have been prepared by Mr. Brewer's crew of eager law students did you use?...or did he just pass along the citations and Lexis Nexis quotes about the school?

charles mancherian

Thu, Oct 28, 2010 : 9:58 a.m.

Just more dirty politics from the Democrats that they learned from Granholm and Binero (if not spelled right, who cares?). Quimet has done a great job for the county and city and deserves to be in the State legislature. Maybe he can clean up the dirty politics in Lansing.

David Briegel

Thu, Oct 28, 2010 : 9:54 a.m.

Insidethehall, Golly, Maybe you could ask Mark Boonstra to write an editorial about evil lawyers. I hear he may know a few at Miller, Canfield! JSA, are you certain? Did he take that deduction for laundering our tax dollars to our favorite charity? As for the timing, it was only recently that a poster commented how Mark insisted on being referred to as DOCTOR Ouimet! I am certain they wanted to be thorough with such a matter. drip...drip.....drip...drip Character indeed!


Thu, Oct 28, 2010 : 9:51 a.m.

Ooops. I meant no "data". IT


Thu, Oct 28, 2010 : 9:47 a.m.

Dear Ecletablog, I find what you have quoted from Green's site to be completely unsubstantial to begin with, therefore there is no challenge. Those quotes are complete nonsense. There is no meaning in these words. "* Use our manufacturing expertise to make the products the world will need, such as alternative energy components and mass transit equipment. * Strengthen K-12 and higher education to prepare our citizens to meet the needs of a global, knowledge-based economy." No solutions. No meaning. No date. No plan. Pure lip service. I'd rather see nothing and be in for a surprise than see that insulting-to-my-intelligence politico-speak. IT


Thu, Oct 28, 2010 : 9:32 a.m.

@Independent_Thinker: I challenge you to find something more substantial on Mr. Ouimet's website. I was simply responding to A2democrat's suggestion that Green's website doesn't mention jobs. Mr. Ouimet's website simply says: "In the coming months, Ill share with you my record of accomplishment for Washtenaw County and the vision I have for our futuremy plan to get Michigan back to work." Just as a reminder, the election is next Tuesday, five days from now and we're still waiting.

David Briegel

Thu, Oct 28, 2010 : 9:27 a.m.

aajeff, ah, buyers remorse. I won't have any when I vote for Christine Green!


Thu, Oct 28, 2010 : 9:22 a.m.

I think from here to election day, I will choose to completely ignore any 'new' findings about old information from any candidate about another. How is someone supposed to sort out the relevance of the information? How are we to know whether there is a real basis for the allegation? There is no time to 'let the dust settle'. There may be merit to the allegation, then again, there may not. Who is to really know? At first blush, it smells. What we are being asked to do is to be judge and jury in a hurry-up trial with huge stakes. In the end, it is all about timing. Both sides of the political isle have used this tactic to great effect since the dawning of the electoral process. But it isn't ethical, and both sides know it. Is it legal? Sure. Here's to putting on the earmuffs until the election is over.


Thu, Oct 28, 2010 : 9:18 a.m.

I just have to say that I can't believe that anyone is truthfully surprised that or any other group would be looking more closely at politicians during an election. C'mon! Of COURSE they are! And they *should* be. Ouimet and Green are both looking to represent our District in the State House so we damn well better do our homework NOW before we vote than after the fact when it's too late. FYI, the link Barb mentions above about the lies/distortions Mr. Ouimet was caught at on his website is this one:


Thu, Oct 28, 2010 : 9:15 a.m.

Eclectablog really???? Quote: @A2democrat: "I find it funny that on her why I am running section on her website jobs are not mentioned once." I guess you skipped past the front page of where it says: "* Use our manufacturing expertise to make the products the world will need, such as alternative energy components and mass transit equipment. * Strengthen K-12 and higher education to prepare our citizens to meet the needs of a global, knowledge-based economy." That load of rambling political-speak nonsense. If you told me to "write some meaningless drivel that will sound good on a politician's website" that is exactly what I'd write. How about: "Work with the fine people of this state to bring us together to solve all of our problems and use all of our strengths to further our common goals." That one's pretty good huh (made it up myself)? It amounts to absolutely zero just like that other nonsense you quoted from her website above. I am happy to see an intelligent discourse on this story considering is clearly in the pocket of democrats. I am not in the republican pocket, but come on, think for yourselves. IT


Thu, Oct 28, 2010 : 9:13 a.m.

It doesn't sound as if he is very good at the details. He doesn't follow procedure (expense reports). He doesn't research in the school he plans to get a degree from and he worked in higher education? My experience in working in higher ed raised my standards in where I would earn degrees from. I found his response to interesting. He first acted like he didnt know the history of the school and then he downplays it by saying he knows that it wasnt a good institution. So why waste the money? BTW: you can earn a master's at EMU and many other colleges while working full time. His degree comparable to U of M OR any other accredited college. Nothing is more annoying than when people are misleading to make themselves seem more educated or superior than what they are.

Chase Ingersoll

Thu, Oct 28, 2010 : 9:03 a.m.

Ouimet was not opposed in the Republican Primary. Lack of primary competition makes it easy for the candidate/party in the short run, but in the long run the result are candidates that are vulnerable to the sort of claims we are seeing above. Likewise, the media is vulnerable to claims of bias when they wait until the last week to run this story. It strains ones credulity to think that this allegation was not known by someone at a long time ago. And regardless of ones partisanship, we all loath the thought of someone purchasing "resume enhancements" in lieu of a more rigorous qualifications and experiences. What is particularly ironic here is that someone in the educational industry here in Michigan has been tainted by the reputation of a publicly exposed degree mill. It does look slippery. It is just "icky". It does reflect the "Eddie Haskelization" of our political class that succeeds by pandering to voters who are influenced by pandering. And it is important to note that unlike other presidential candidates, including Bush and Kerry, Obama has yet to release his college transcripts.


Thu, Oct 28, 2010 : 8:50 a.m.

"WHY is the focus of this article on the value of a degree from LaSalle and not on Mr. Ouimet's past performance?" I think you're missing the point. His past performance is being called into question because it involves decision-making involved with pursuing this degree and then using it on his resume. Sure, he can say it's no big shakes now but then why would someone go after a degree like that if you know it's not worth anything? He's all about eating crow once he gets caught but he keeps using deceitful tactics until someone calls him on it. Check out the link @electablog posted. Very interesting, indeed and show that exact pattern of behavior.

Rod Anderson

Thu, Oct 28, 2010 : 8:48 a.m.

Curious timing for this non-story. There is one positive effect of this story, though. My renewal for the print version of is sitting on my desk. This eleventh-hour hit piece makes my decision REAL easy.

Somewhat Concerned

Thu, Oct 28, 2010 : 8:39 a.m.

I could care less whether he has an MBA degree, but I do care about the character of the man.


Thu, Oct 28, 2010 : 8:33 a.m.

Was there anyone voting for Mark Ouimet because they were impressed with his MBA degree? More importantly, did anyone ever question his business accuemen? This is just one more 11th hour attempt to discredit an outstanding public servant. We should instead question the character of his opponent for distracting us from the real and important issues that seperate these two candidates.


Thu, Oct 28, 2010 : 8:28 a.m.

An institution can be a university if it offers masters/doctoral programs leading to the degree.


Thu, Oct 28, 2010 : 8:16 a.m.

Reading their ".info" website, they offer an "Apostille" for $90 to their graduates to validate their degree now. Students contacted the State of Louisiana and found out that it merely notarized the signatures on the diploma.....for $90! So even though the school closed, they are still trying to squeeze money out of the "students".


Thu, Oct 28, 2010 : 8:12 a.m.

And it took this long to discover this information on Ouimet's phony credentials?!


Thu, Oct 28, 2010 : 8:08 a.m.

Well, no wonder we had to pay his expenses for all of his newspaper interviews etc. We needed to pay back the money he spent on his fishy degree! Those diploma-mill degrees are expensive. And do you suppose he even googled "LaSalle University Louisiana" before he spent thousands to buy degree?? Unbelievable.


Thu, Oct 28, 2010 : 8:05 a.m.

Though I'm proud to call Jeff Irwin my next state rep, I'm not sure how big a deal the degree thing is if he isn't out there holding it up as some major qualification. Certainly sounds like a worthless piece of paper but I'm just saying.

God Loves Us All

Thu, Oct 28, 2010 : 8:05 a.m.

God bless you dems still thinking you will get votes.

Somewhat Concerned

Thu, Oct 28, 2010 : 8:03 a.m.

A guy in Michigan basically buys a degree from a correspondence school in Louisiana. That is just pitiful. Talk about insecurity. He may or may not be honest - I don't really know - but he is pitiful.

C. S. Gass

Thu, Oct 28, 2010 : 8:03 a.m.

I don't care if the man has only a GED that he got my mail from the East Nigerian School of Education. If he doesn't waste money that the state cannot afford I am for him. Over educated pipe dreamers have got this state into the mess it is in currently. I don't think more over-educated nitwits are the answer. If you are voting for someone based on how many letters he has after his name, you are an idiot. I really don't care for this type of dirt digging.


Thu, Oct 28, 2010 : 8:01 a.m.

@Genboy "If he wins, he'll just be another slimy member of the Republican caucus, and will help redraw district lines to give even slimier Republicans more seats in the future." You could very easily replace the word Republican with the word Democrat and nobody would no the difference! There are precious few politician be they Republican or Democrat that I would trust with my money. And this is the sad fact we don't have much choice!


Thu, Oct 28, 2010 : 7:55 a.m.

It's almost as if Green's campaign manager wrote this article and sent it to I've never read a more thorough article about something so trivial. I'm not a Ouimet supporter but this wreaks of dirty politics. I can assure you of this, one thing we need less of in Congress are more lawyers.


Thu, Oct 28, 2010 : 7:50 a.m.

This is almost as bad as Obama lying about begin a professor.

Craig Lounsbury

Thu, Oct 28, 2010 : 7:46 a.m.

"Ouimet.... denied knowing anything about the university's reputation as a fraudulent diploma mill or the fact that it was never an accredited academic institution." "At the time, Ouimet was working for Northwood University, where he served in various administrative roles..." So he was working in the academic world, yet it never dawned on him to do some home work before enrolling at an Internet University with the intention of "earning" a Masters degree never walking in the doors of a brick and mortar Institution or being in the same room with a professor?


Thu, Oct 28, 2010 : 7:36 a.m.

even as a staunch democrat I find this article to be superfluous. So he got a crummy degree from a terrible school, whoopity do.


Thu, Oct 28, 2010 : 7:36 a.m.

More Democratic mud slinging. At least he pays his taxes.

Top Cat

Thu, Oct 28, 2010 : 7:30 a.m.

OK, OK, let's agree that neither party has a monopoly on truth or fiction. One of the problems of the modern welfare state (and warfare state on a Federal level) is that government has more money and goodies to dispense. The stakes are higher and the competition more ferocious for political office and its power. George Will said, "Being elected to Congress is regarded as being sent on a looting raid for one's friends." Whatever Mr. Ouimet did or didn't do should be evaluated on its facts and merits. Everything I've seen the last 2 years (make that 50 years) only confirms my belief in a constitutional and limited government.

David Cahill

Thu, Oct 28, 2010 : 7:28 a.m.

I knew it! Ouimet's remaining supporters have the nerve to say "Diploma mill, shmiploma mill. He's still a great guy!" I doubt if this latest revelation will go over too well in the 52nd District, which is full of voters who actually earned real degrees.


Thu, Oct 28, 2010 : 7:27 a.m.

Well this is classic scorched earth DEM politics from trial lawyer Christine Green (the female Geoff Feiger). Green knows she will lose if she talks accomplishments and who is backing her campaign. Yes, this is the same Christine Green who cost UM $100K in legal fees fending off a trivial law suit from a disgruntled employee and is backed by trial lawyers and the ACLU. Now we understand the political tactics employed by the DEMS in this race.


Thu, Oct 28, 2010 : 7:26 a.m.

@A2democrat: "I find it funny that on her why I am running section on her website jobs are not mentioned once." I guess you skipped past the front page of where it says: "* Use our manufacturing expertise to make the products the world will need, such as alternative energy components and mass transit equipment. * Strengthen K-12 and higher education to prepare our citizens to meet the needs of a global, knowledge-based economy." Bolstering Michigan's manufacturing sector and investing in our education system are *exactly* the things we should be doing to create jobs in our state. And keep in mind these accusations and revelations are not coming from the Green campaign.


Thu, Oct 28, 2010 : 7:24 a.m.

A professional hack job suitable for a professional Hack.

John Agno

Thu, Oct 28, 2010 : 7:17 a.m.

It is unfortunate the must be experiencing "slow news days" and therefore deciding to broadcast questionable stories about Mark Ouimet's character; from attempting to make acceptable county reimbursement expenses unacceptable to trashing his online MBA educational activities. It would be good for's editors to understand there is something in all of us that makes us instinctively want to explain the world around us in terms of people's essential attributes or character: he's a _____ _____. The mistake we make in thinking of character as something unified and all-encompassing is very similar to a kind of blind spot in the way we process information. When it comes to interpreting other people's behavior, human beings invariably make the mistake of overestimating the importance of fundamental character traits and underestimating the importance of the situation and context. We do this because we are more attuned to personal cues than contextual cues. Yet, character is more like a bundle of habits and tendencies and interests, loosely bound together and dependent, at certain times, on circumstance and context.


Thu, Oct 28, 2010 : 7:14 a.m.

@jussayin: "has anyone checked with his endorsements and organizations that he claims support?" Yes. I have. And he was forced to remove several of them from his website after he got busted for them: Just more evidence that Mark Ouimet isn't all that he appears to be or wants people in the 52nd District to think he is.


Thu, Oct 28, 2010 : 7:14 a.m.

First off, I've already voted and did (reluctantly) vote for Quimet. After reading this article, I do believe issues surrounding his background are starting to surface and I have a feeling there is much more to follow. A quick Google search reveals a number of news articles that state, following his receipt of an MBA from LaSalle University, that he "returned to Michigan" to further his career at Northwood University (previously Northwood Institute-I never could figure out how a lot of these schools obtained "University" status over the years). He never went anywhere and then returned to Michigan. He should have corrected this information but I see nowhere that he did so. This is clearly not good news for his campaign and I believe does demonstrate he might not be who he claims to be, which ofcourse is nothing new for politicians. Smells bad.....And submitting and receiveing $ for visiting with news organizations, etc. is not right, no matter what he did with the money he received.


Thu, Oct 28, 2010 : 7:12 a.m.

Maybe Green should say what she is going to do when and if she is elected instead of having the media try to dis-credit Ouimet. I find it funny that on her why I am running section on her website jobs are not mentioned once.


Thu, Oct 28, 2010 : 7:11 a.m.

This guy is slippery and slimy. I feel bad about the good Democrats who are voting for him. If he wins, he'll just be another slimy member of the Republican caucus, and will help redraw district lines to give even slimier Republicans more seats in the future. Ouimet has plenty of people bamboozled. Give your vote to Green.


Thu, Oct 28, 2010 : 6:47 a.m.

I see nothing illegal with what Mark Ouimet has done. But this MBA (he's not dumb, he knows it was the EZ track) and some of his expense reports certainly look a little dubious from the ethical point of view. It's up to you, the voter, to decide whether these ethical warts are an issue when deciding whether to vote for him or not. As for the Democrats and Republicans calling each other out for distortion, etc, what a joke, both parties are the same scrum with a few different stripes. We need a legitimate 3rd party system to challenge these bozos before they completely run our country into the ground.


Thu, Oct 28, 2010 : 6:46 a.m.

@JON where was the lie? And who in CONGRESS/pushed voted for the war? A lot of democrats pushed for it and now Bush gets all the blame.There was yellow cake found,which is used to made bombs. Check YELLOW CAKE out in any search engine.


Thu, Oct 28, 2010 : 6:44 a.m.

@rebecca jones: "beaking news: is a shill for the democrat party. How on earth is this news? Christine green has no credentials - why isn't that reported? " support of any party....That would explain why they support Snyder for governor??? They've had Snyder's blurbs on here for weeks and week, always with praise. If Ouimet had no master's it wouldn't be an issue. Touting a diploma-mill degree IS an issue. Particularly when it was raided by the feds. Good grief. The issue is lack of integrity.


Thu, Oct 28, 2010 : 6:38 a.m.

May be problematic to posture for a Chancellor position without a "Masters" on one's CV. Wonder how long it took Northwoods to figure it out?


Thu, Oct 28, 2010 : 6:35 a.m.

The more I hear about this guy, the more he seems to be slippery. It's the accumulated news about his background, not this story alone.


Thu, Oct 28, 2010 : 6:28 a.m.

What does it mean when MBA's from highly regarded academic institutions aren't willing to scrum in the muck of politics? I've received some very unsavory campaign mailings on this very race and it makes me wonder if all we can attract for representation are those willing to get very soiled indeed. I'm not saying that Ouimet is disingenuous (I don't know anything about Green) but if I was hiring a representative as an employee I suspect that I would be disappointed in the lack of highly qualified talent.

Jon Saalberg

Thu, Oct 28, 2010 : 6:25 a.m.

@Julius: I guess then the GOP's "playbook" is to lie to all of us - lying about why we got into the Iraq war, why we 'don't need' national health care, what the Constitution 'really' says - these, to me seem like the real lies from the real experts at telling them, the GOP.

rebecca jones

Thu, Oct 28, 2010 : 6:22 a.m.

beaking news: is a shill for the democrat party. How on earth is this news? Christine green has no credentials - why isn't that reported?


Thu, Oct 28, 2010 : 6:09 a.m.

It never stops. Falsely accusing Republicans is the Democrats' entire playbook. Just keep throwing stuff at the wall and eventually something at least leaves some kind of residue if it doesn't stick. Punish wrongdoing when there is actually wrongdoing, but don't make things up. In this case, Ouimet put trust in LaSalle that they had cleaned there act up. There's no doubt something was screwy but he did earn what they gave him. I wouldn't have done it myself, but I see nothing wrong with what he did. He certainly didn't lie about it. Consider if he tried to hide the fact that he was involved with this school. How would that look?


Thu, Oct 28, 2010 : 6:07 a.m.

A million tiny pieces all add up to one big lie. Ask why there's a gag order involved is Ouimet's departure from banking and has anyone checked with his endorsements and organizations that he claims support? Keep digging...there's lots of ways to explain all of the tiny lies. But that add up to one big one.


Thu, Oct 28, 2010 : 6:06 a.m.

Ryan, you seem obsessed with Mark. Are you turning over all Green stones as well? Just checking.


Thu, Oct 28, 2010 : 5:55 a.m.

"However, he said it wasn't a rigorous academic curriculum and he certainly doesn't flaunt the degree" From his own words in this interview he chose the lazy way out. I don't want lazy representation. An NO adult of even average intelligence is going to enroll in a school, pay lots of money, and not know in advance the value of that degree. I am not impressed by advanced degrees, per se. I am however impressed by the hard work and discipline needed to complete an advanced degree from an accredited school with a genuine acceptable curriculum. This doesn't pass the smell test. An elected county commissioner took the lazy way out, and that explains a lot about the state of Washtenaw County. And he surely doesn't earn a promotion from the voters.


Thu, Oct 28, 2010 : 5:42 a.m.

Wow...this is really getting low. Did he lie about getting a degree? No. Is anyone saying that this means he's not qualified? No. So, why is there any relevance at all?

Sean Gray

Thu, Oct 28, 2010 : 5:29 a.m.

Mark earned his degree in 1999, a full three years, according to the FBI, after the school stopped selling phony degrees. Mark took business classes from the school to further his education, which likely added to his skills as a business man, just look at what he did to lead the Board of Commissioners in balancing the County budget this past year. This just seems like more 11th hour political theater from his foes.


Thu, Oct 28, 2010 : 5:27 a.m.

"A Republican lying or distorting the "truth." Seems like the Republican play book to me.".. Now lets be fair. I assume you are familiar with Kwame Kilpatrick, Monica Conyers, Bill Clinton. Do you remember when Bill Clinton said "I want you to listen to me. I'm going to say this again: I did not have sexual relations with that woman, Miss Lewinsky. I never told anybody to lie, not a single time; never. These allegations are false. And I need to go back to work for the American people. Thank you."? Lets just say many of the people in public office seem to have a hard time finding the truth.


Thu, Oct 28, 2010 : 5:09 a.m.

Why is this news? A Republican lying or distorting the "truth." Seems like the Republican play book to me.