Skubick: Seeds for Mark Brewer's removal were planted years ago
By Tim Skubick, Fox 2 News -
LANSING, Mich. (WJBK) -
From 30,000 feet it looks like Mark Brewer, the now dethroned former chair of the State Democratic Party, was a mere victim of circumstances.
During the last election cycle, the D's did not take control of the House, they garnered only one of two seats on the state supreme court and the labor-backed proposal 2 went down in flames.
No single person, or course is responsible for all that, but it happened on Mr. Brewer's watch so somebody had to go and he was it.
Getting a little closer to the ground, however, it turns out the seeds for his removal were planted years ago dating all the way back to the Presidential candidacy of Bill Clinton according to party player who was around at the time.
And in subsequent presidential campaigns involving John Kerry and President Obama, the same line kept coming up, "Mr. Brewer was an obstacle and didn't help" in those important races.
Even the national party raised some concerns, this source goes on, but it never reached critical mass. It's tough to turn grumbling into an ouster movement especially when no one else wants the job.
That was even the case this time out until the Michigan Congressional delegation led by pit-bull Congressman Sandy Levin went to work to oust Mr. Brewer.
Levin and congressional colleagues found someone and Lon Johnson now sits were Mr. Brewer sat for 19 years.
While the press corps was hoping for a Brewer vs. Johnson convention floor fight, Mr. Brewer dashed that when he did a nose count and discovered the other guy had more nostrils.
Yet some bad blood remains on the floor especially from Macomb County where a former aid to former Congressman David Bonior got into a shouting match with Mr. Levin. It was ugly and while it may blow over, Mr. Johnson begins his reign, not fighting to unseat the GOP governor, but trying to mend some fences in his own back year. Which is why they call them Democrats.
As for Mr.Brewer's take on all this, he walked out of the convention hall after a standing ovation and is not currently returning any phone calls.
(See Mr. Johnson on Off the Record this week at wkar.org starting Friday afternoon.)