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Posted on Thu, Apr 29, 2010 : 2:02 p.m.

Republican senators reject Granholm's appointments to EMU, other boards

By Staff

LANSING — Republicans who control the Michigan Senate on Wednesday rejected several of Democratic Gov. Jennifer Granholm's appointments to public university governing boards, including Eastern Michigan University.

The Senate voted 21-17 mostly along party lines to reject 14 of Granholm's appointments to the boards of Central Michigan, Eastern Michigan, Ferris State, Grand Valley State, Michigan Technological, Northern Michigan and Western Michigan university boards.

Jennifer Granholm 042910.jpg

Michigan Gov. Jennifer Granholm

It's a rare move that Democrats said smacked of partisan politics. The dispute is over whether an outgoing or incoming governor should have control over university board appointments that take effect Jan. 1.

Granholm leaves office at noon that day. She can't run for office again because of Michigan's term limits law.

Republican Senate Majority Leader Mike Bishop has said that many of the appointees nominated by Granholm are qualified. But he said the appointments should be reserved for the next governor, who takes office the same day the new university board terms begin.

Most of Granholm's appointees are Democrats but a few are Republicans.

Her administration says the move by Senate Republicans goes against past practices. The GOP-run Senate allowed Republican Gov. John Engler's appointments to stand as Granholm came into office in 2003.

Democrats blasted Republicans for pushing the university board issue rather than focusing on the economy or state budget. Michigan has the nation's highest unemployment rate and a state government budget deficit projected at $1.7 billion for the fiscal year starting Oct. 1.

Gubernatorial appointments are considered confirmed unless the Senate rejects them within 60 days. Granholm made the appointments, in late March. They included Michael D. Hawks of Saugatuck and Erane C. Washington-Kendrick of Ypsilanti to the Eastern Michigan University board of regents

"The citizens of this state and our state universities are the real losers today," Granholm spokeswoman Liz Boyd said in a statement. "Senator Bishop rejected qualified appointees to serve our state universities, making them nothing more than partisan political pawns."

Republican Sen. Bruce Patterson of Canton Township was the only member of his party to vote against rejecting Granholm's appointments.



Fri, Apr 30, 2010 : 12:46 p.m.

@insidethehall: Maybe Granholm should just resign now, like that quitter, Sarah Palin? She was elected to a full term, ought to serve her full term, and ought to be entitled to all the powers bestowed on a sitting governor until her term ends.


Fri, Apr 30, 2010 : 7:41 a.m.

negativity,negativity always and ever?LT


Fri, Apr 30, 2010 : 7:03 a.m.

Everything in Lansing is done along party lines these days. The animosity is boundless. One party is continually outraged at what the other party is doing or saying. Politicians have long since moved from discourse to denunciation.


Fri, Apr 30, 2010 : 6:55 a.m.

I disagree. It sounds like the appointments are across parties, and just because the term is limited does not mean that that person should not be held to high standards to do their job. If people believe she is a lame duck, then what incentive is there to not be a lame duk? I suggest we change our thinking and hold our officers to the same standards on their penultimate day as we do on inauguration day. If the candidate is qualified and if there is not a overt agenda obvious, then judge the candidates on the merit, not on some lame issue. The Universities end up suffering because the new administration I'm sure will have plenty of pressing issues on their plate to not have to deal with appointments to boards, and thus, the U's do suffer. What I do find interesting is the number of appointments, but I'm sure that has to do with the term limits at the boards, I'd have to research that more.


Thu, Apr 29, 2010 : 7:47 p.m.

Lameducks should not be making appointments. Kudos to the legislators who stood up on the right side of this issue.