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September 25, 2006 - Image 7

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 2006-09-25

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Monday, September 25, 2006 - The Michigan Daily - 7A

Continued from page 1A again.
but her
"Had I had that abortion, I said b
would have probably been forced recordt
to be a liberal in order to live abortio
with myself," she said. "I would him.
have had to surround myself with Thr
a group of people that told me Wilkin
that was OK." conser
That's only part of the roller with.
coaster of events that led her to "Mo
Michigan. erals, s
As a child, Wilkins lived a room
comfortable life in Lexington, she sai
Ky. I was
"I went from the perfect Chris- conser
tian home, leader of my Bible correct
study in middle school - we Soon
never missed church," she said grip on
"Everybody kind of looked up cash, V
to us as the perfect conservative ily. She
Christian home." was ba
Her life got complicated when got out
Wilkins was 14 and her parents Afte
divorced. She and her mother friends
moved in with her mother's boy- to chuo
friend in Louisville, Ky. Forced Christi
to go to high school in a new town age 18
and still reeling from her parents' change
split, Wilkins was adrift. She Wilk
found a boyfriend who had spent boyfrie
time in juvenile detention and nity c
abused drugs. She stole cocaine for the
from her mother and began using Colleg
it herself. care of
At 15, Wilkins moved into an This
apartment with her boyfriend. hired b
At first, because of her age, she Michig
could only find a job bagging and rec
groceries. She later worked in Republ
a pizza parlor, then as a hostess she re
in a restaurant. Later that year, Republ
Wilkins did her first stint in drug 3-year-
rehabilitation. grandpa
After having the baby, Wilkins But
was working 40 hours a week, Univer:
going to school and taking care of lege Re
her son. She maintained a grade group's
point average of 4.0 throughout his gro
high school, she said. she pr
Wilkins said she stayed off Immign
cocaine during the pregnancy cratic u
and immediately afterward, but called
relapsed when her boyfriend Wilk
went to prison on a drug charge. with th
"After he got sent to prison, I ty's ch
just went back," she said. "I don't for Fre
know what caused it. I'm just sit- the rig
ting there one day; I haven't talk- licans,
ed to my drug buddies in years." Illegal
Not knowing how to contact Whe
her former friends, Wilkins Wilkin
opened the phone book. ic rally
"I just open it up and I find the babies"
first person I think that might asked
have it," she said. called t
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person did have cocaine,
ilkins was soon addicted
She held onto her son,
grandparents, whom she
oth have felonies on their
s relates to protesting
n clinics, helped care for
tughout her addiction,
s clung to the Christian
vatism she was raised
st druggie people are lib-
o I'd always be stuck in a
with a bunch of liberals,"
d. "No matter what state
in in my life, I knew the
vative policies were the
, she began to lose her
life. Strung out and out of
Wilkins turned to her fam-
e went back to rehab but
ck on drugs soon after she
r prodding from family
Wilkins started going
ich and rediscovered the
anity of her youth. Around
her life slowly began to
ins broke up with her
nd and went to commu-
ollege, where she wrote
newspaper and joined the
e Republicans. She took
her son.
summer, Wilkins was
ty the CRNC to travel to
an as a field representative
ruit student volunteers for
ican campaigns. She said
cruited 450 new College
icans around the state. Her
old son is staying with her
arents in Kentucky.
Wilkins clashed with the
sity's chapter of the Col-
publicans. Rob Scott, the
chair, sought to distance
oup from Wilkins after
oposed "Catch an Illegal
rant Day" and the Demo-
arget practice, which she
"Fun with Guns."
ins never carried through
e plans, but the Universi-
apter of Young Americans
edom, a group further to
ht than the College Repub-
has adopted "Catch an
Immigrant Day."
n Scott found out that
s was at the Democrat-
with her "Debbie kills
sign, he called her and
her to leave. Later, he
he CRNC.

"I asked them to make it clear
to her why her role on our campus
had to change," Scott said. "And
to make it clear that there were
certain types of events that she
wasn't going to be able to attend
either unofficially or officially."
The CRNC responded by tell-
ing Wilkins to stay away from
the University. Wilkins thought
the University's College Republi-
cans had caved to pressure from
those who decried her ideas.
"The U of M College Repub-
licans are a bunch of appeasers,"
she said. "They have this naive
outlook on the world that we can
work together with the Demo-
crats and la la la things will hap-
pen. But working together with
the Democrats doesn't mean
hiding in some closet and not
offending anybody. That's not
what we do."
Scott disagreed, saying
Wilkins's confrontational style
has no place at the University.
"Our public statements about
it are pretty clear. Those events
undermined the goals of our
group," he said. "Those events
were not appropriate for our
The CRNC did not return calls
for comment yesterday.
Wilkins said she plans to
return to Kentucky after Novem-
ber's midterm elections to run
for statewide chair of the College
Wilkins is confident that
despite the publicity she has gen-
erated, she will be able to find
a job on the campaign trail in
Michigan this fall.
She said the Michigan Civil
Rights Initiative, a group working
to ban some forms of affirmative
action in the state, had offered
her a job. MCRI campaign man-
ager Doug Tietz denied making
an offer. Wilkins said she has
had other interviews with cam-
paigns in Michigan but refused
to name them.
Wilkins said her tumultu-
ous past should make her more
attractive to employers, not less.
"I want to have a life in poli-
tics, and people have said you
can't with your record," she said.
"If anything, it shows that I can
overcome stuff, that I can put my
money where my mouth is on a
lot of things because I've been to
hell and back. I'm not just saying
this stuff because it was piped
into me from my parents."

Continued from page 1A
Kryk said that Fielding Yost,
the athletic director who first
envisioned Michigan Stadium,
would have approved of the ren-
ovations were he still alive.
Meanwhile, Fielding Yost III,
Yost's grandson, sat at the back
of the meeting room, unable to
argue otherwise.
Yost, a member of Save the
Big House, had tried to secure a
spot on the speaker's list on July
24, but he was too late.
When Pollack and Wilson
discovered luxury box sup-
porters had filled the list, they
requested the list be expanded
to guarantee the regents heard
both sides of the arguments.

The administration denied their
request, citing the rule that only
six people can speak on any one
Pollack and Wilson said the
University's public comments
procedure can make it hard for
dissenters to make their voices
"In the spirit of the Universi-
ty and the values of intellectual
inquiry, it would seem that the
University has an institutional
interest in a full, fair, intellec-
tually honest debate," Wilson
University spokeswoman
Julie Peterson said the Univer-
sity has repeatedly expressed
openness to ideas from the Uni-
versity community. Members of
the public can offer feedback on
the process at www.umich.edu/

Peterson said she regrets that
both sides weren't equally rep-
resented at the September meet-
ing, but the regents can't change
the rules to accommodate one
side or the other. The same
process allowed seven speak-
ers - including Pollack - to
speak against-the luxury boxes
at July's meeting. No one spoke
in favor of the athletic depart-
ment's plan then.
"The process for signing up
for public comments has been
entirely fair," Peterson said. "It
was fair in July when it resulted
in many people speaking who
were opposed to the project, and
it was fair in September when it
resulted in many people speak-
ing who were in support of the


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Continued from page 1A
in other fields such as hydrogen
and solar energy, as well as how
those technologies could interact
with public policy.
Was will have three associate
directors in the categories of sci-
ence and technology, public policy
and outreach. He will report to Ste-
phen Forrest, the University's vice
president for research.
"The interdisciplinary culture
compared to other top research
institutions gives us a big advan-
tage because energy research is
interdisciplinary in nature, and
draws upon disparate fields,;

Forrest said in a written state-
ment. "This institute will bring
together U-M's energy research
activities to achieve maximum
Once established, the institute
will principally be funded through
private foundations, industry part-
nerships and federal government
project bids, Was said.
The University hopes to recruit
top faculty to the institute. Some
of the institute's funding will be
devoted to creating new chair posi-
tions and fellowships in LSA, the
College of Engineering and the
Rackham Graduate School.
Was said he also hopes to attract
big names in energy research to
campus by hosting an energy sym-

posium in February at Rackham
As the institute launches, Was
said he will focus on making sure
researchers and faculty across
campus become involved through
a series of workshops designed to
advertise the project's opportuni-
Was said he will also hire new
faculty to strengthen key areas of
The re-establishment of the
institute was a key recommenda-
tion from the Michigan Energy
Research Council, a commission
led by former University President
James Duderstadt to find ways
to strengthen hydrogen energy

ects and
dren are
home. C
sary an'
act, iron
suade at
will he,
plans fo
thing; yr
is can b
to you.
occurs t
black at
you hav
dotn' w
You I
You dot
you, it'
enced to

vonday, Sept. 25, 2006
h 21 to April 19)
hel determined about something
cThat's because you have your
ng-range plans for the future.
ook good.)
i20 to May 20)
ntic relationships are unusually
ate today. Similarly, artistic proj-
educating or working with chil-
very important to you.
21 to June 20)
want to make big changes at
Get rid of whatever is unneces-
d unused. If you clean up your
ically, you'll have more room to
21 to July 22)
ability to convince, sell, per-
nd market your ideas is fabulous
In particular, family members
ar you. (You have long-range
your personal life.)
23 to Aug. 22)
have determined ideas about
l matters right now for some-
o realty want 1o buy. Whatever it
e a practical, long-lasting benefit
;23 to Sept. 22)
feet intensely about whatever
today. Everything seems to be
nd white. This could be because
e some cash-flow ideas and you
ant to see them upset!
23 to Oct. 22)
feel driven by something today.
n't want to do things halfway. To
s all or nothing. Seek out the
of someone older or more experi-
o discuss this.

(Oct. 23 to Nov. 21)
Discussions with a friend or perhaps a
group are powerful today. However, you
could run into opposition. Perhaps this is
because you're too insistent on getting
your own way.
(Nov. 22 to Dec. 21)
You feet so strongly about a particular
issue that you might elect to leave a rela-
tionship, a friendship or a group of peo-
ple. (Actually, you have been thinking
about this for a long time.)
(Dec. 22 to Jan. 19)
Your ideals are aroused today.
Whether it's about politics, religion or a
philosophical concept, you're prepared
to defend your point of view.
(Jan. 20 to Feb. 18)
You feel very passionate today! This
could be about a personal relationship,
or it could be about how to share some-
thing with someone.(That's because you
have loug-rauge plans.)
(Feb. 19to March 20)
Discussions with partners and close
friends might be heated. You don't wat
to give any ground. You have definite
ideas about how to share something, and
you won't budge.
YOU BORN TODAY Not only are
you goal-oriented, you work extremely
hard so achieve these goals. You're
determined, persevering and focused!
(This is your recipe for success.) You
have strong family values, and often
place the high demands yosu make of
youeselfon your loved ones as well. You
are a perfectionist. You work hard to cre-
ate the world you want. The year ahead
is social, romantic and fun-loving.
Birthdate of: Will Smith, actor; Aida
Turturro, actress; Heather Locklear,

1 11

Continued from page 1A
CARE employees and customers
concerned about the deal.
Now is the right time to sell
M-CARE because of recent
trends in the insurance indus-
try, Kelch said. In order for
M-CARE to continue to be prof-
itable, he said, the University
Health System would have to
make large capital investments
in technology systems.
Kelch said doing so would
detract from the University
Health System's main objectives
of research and care.
"I fully support the plan they
are bringing forward and the
rigid analysis that went into this
proposal," University President
Mary Sue Coleman said at the
The University hired Cain
Brothers, an investment banking
firm, to help with the negotia-
tions and to provide an analysis
of the price of the sale.
M-CARE covers about
200,000 members, including
60,000 University employees,
graduate students, retirees and

their dependents.
M-CAID, which insures the
Medicaid populations of Washt-
enaw, Livingston and part of
Wayne counties, will also be
sold to Blue Care Network.
M-CARE's remaining PPO
programs managed by the Mich-
igan Health Insurance Corpora-
tion will be sold directly to Blue
Cross Blue Shield of Michigan.
M-CARE employs about 400
people in the Ann Arbor and
Southfield areas.
The number of jobs that will
be eliminated because of the
sale is still unclear, Kelch said.
Until the sale is finalized, M-
CARE employees will be offered
a retention incentive to continue to
work in their current positions. After
that time, many employees may
remain on staff during the transition
period under a lease agreement with
Blue Cross. Employees may also be
transferred to other positions within
the University.
If their jobs are cut, employ-
ees will receive at least 60 days
notice, according to federal reg-
ulations and University policy.
The University will not offer
a severance package, but will
provide career consoling for

employees seeking new jobs.
M-CARE customers will not
experience any lapses in cover-
age, Kelch said.
M-CARE will continue
health care plans for University
employees through 2007. At that
time, employees can enroll in a
plan with equivalent coverage
and benefits through Blue Cross,
Kelch said.
The University will retain
control over its benefits pack-
ages and will also have a seat on
Blue Care Network's advisory
board, he said.
Kelch said because M-CARE
and Blue Cross share many
health care providers, customers
will likely be able to continue
seeing their current physician.
Premiums will not go up as a
result of the sale, Kelch said.
As part of the sale, Blue Cross
and the University are launch-
ing a joint venture to improve
health care in Michigan includ-
ing quality, safety and efficiency
An eight-member board
- with an equal number of
University and Blue Cross rep-
resentatives - will manage the

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