The Stteen / Wedn esdy Otbe 7,21
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random student interview by will grundler
Wednesday October 27,2010 // The Statement
DINGELL, STEELE BRING DIFFERENT LEVELS OF
EXPERIENCE TO 15TH DISTRICT CONGRESSIONAL RACE
BY MICHELE NAROV
elcome to the Random
Student Political Inter-
view, in which we will
gauge whether most students are
liberal or extremely liberal. We're
at the circulation desk in the south
entrance of the Graduate Library.
Please state your name and class
standing for the record.
Nazifa, and I'm a senior.
on which side of the face does Gov-
ernor Granholm have that mole?
Correct. And who are the two can-
didates for governor of Michigan?
Um, Idon't know.
I've seen those commercials being
all, like, this guy is evil and laying off
Who are you going to vote for on
Is the 2nd a Tuesday? (Checks sched-
ule.) I'm probably not going to vote. I
have class from ten to seven.
Would you say you're pretty lib-
I'm pretty liberal.
Socially, fiscally, relationship-
What does that mean? You need to
define that before -
When you see a person wearing a
"Michigan Republican" shirt, do
you give them a disapproving look?
No. They can be Republicans if they
want to be.
At the University of Michigan?
it'd be surprising, but they do have a
table on the Diag.
It's a really small table. I think they
actually have the smallest table.
Anyway, you work here. When I'm
on "Ask a Librarian" is that you?
That's not me. That's one of the second
floor reference librarians who actu-
ally know what they're talking about.
Because I've asked them out on
dates and they always say no. Are
They are. They have degrees in library
You're joking. There's no degree in
Look it up!
Maybe at Michigan State.
I'm pretty sure there's one here.
(Checks online.) it's in the School of
What a waste of$80,000.Whatkind
of scare tactics would you use to
keep Republicans away from polls?
I don't think I'd use scare tactics.
What ifyou said -
Like, "If you vote, you'll die?"
No, no, they wouldn't go for that,
but what if you said the Rapture is
happening today, or something like
So they stay home and prepare?
Exactly. How long would you keep
Obama in office? Untilhe dies?
I would keep him around until Sarah
Palin, for whatever reason, wasn't eli-
gible to run for office.
Did you see Bill Cosby this weekend
You mean Bill Clinton?
So you do know a little bit about
politics. How many senators do we
have in Congress?
Well, it's like a 60 person majority, so...
would it be like 110?
Maybe you don't. Do we let people
from the U.P.vote?
But should we let them vote?
Because they're close to Canada? Is
that the argument?
That's one of the arguments.
I mean, if you let people from the
South vote, why not the U.P.?
Well, that's a whole other issue,
what with the Civil War and all.
Who did you vote for in the MSA
I didn't vote in the MSA elections.
Do you vote in any elections?
I voted in the presidential election.
But the president is asking you to
vote in this election, so he can get
That's true. Honestly, if my Tuesday
wasn't 10-7 class, I'd be more likely to
I actually wrote in Albus Dumb-
ledore for the last MSA elections.
Yes. Should we consider socialism
as a system of government?
It works for the UK.
What about in America? Don't you
want free tuition?
I don't see many problems with the
You get a free pass from the gov-
ernment, basically, I think.
Well, even communism isn't that bad
of a system when you look at it in its
ideal form -
Woah, woah. You're on record here.
Lastquestion: Sum upyourpolitical
three words can't be, "I don't care."
I like Obama. Sarah Palin frightens
me. I'm going to come off like a total
moron in this interview.
That's allright. Most people do, but
Does it ever get frustrating, writing
for a publication that nobody reads?
This interview is over.
- Nazifa is an LSA senior.
ith 55 years in office, Rep-
resentative John Ding-
ell is the longest serving
member of Congress. His opponent
in Michigan's 15th district, however,
is quite the opposite, having never
before run for office.
But despite his inexperience as a
politician, Republican Rob Steele, a
cardiologist, emphasizes his role as
a community member and career
man as attributes that will aid him
Steele varies greatly from Dingell
in his opinions on political over-reg-
ulation. Steele says that government
interference has lead to less action
in several areas and that his lack of
knowledge about Washington will
serve as a strength rather than a det-
While Dingell defends Medicare,
Steele calls the Medicare system
"broken" and believes that the new
government health care system will
only create more red tape problems
for citizens, according to his cam-
Elizabeth Barrett, communica-
tions director for Dingell's cam-
paign, wrote in an e-mail to The
Michigan Daily that Dingell whole-
heartedly supports these systems.
She wrote that Dingell hopes not
only to protect Medicare for citi-
zens, but also to continue to work
for better health care within the
parameters of the new government
"He will be a watchdog for health
care reform to protect the patients'
bill of rights, which he authored,"
she wrote. "And he will work to
make sure it is effectively imple-
mented for a solid, lasting and help-
Steele and Dingell also differ on
their education reform objectives.
The former feels that government
funding is not the problem with edu-
cation and instead points to proper
schooling as the larger issue.
Dingell, on the other hand, hopes
to fight for more government funds
to make higher education more
"He will protect the Direct Loan
and the Pell Grant Award Programs
for Michigan higher education so
that more young people have access
to higher education to keep the great
minds of the future here in the Unit-
ed States," Barrett told the Daily.
According to his campaign site,
Steele believes Dingell has not
done enough to protect the district
against unemployment problems
plaguing the state, but Barrett wrote
that Dingell aims to continue to
focus on this issue in the future.
"He knows the job situation is dif-
ficult for young people right now,"
she wrote. "That is why he is work-
ing with new industries to bring jobs
back to Michigan.
Steele cites fair taxes and govern-
ment accountability as other impor-
tant issues, writing on his website
that government spending in Wash-
ington is out of control and must be
n Dingell (right), candidates for U.S. Representa
In an October -5, interview with
The Michigan Daily, Steele said he
feels his opponent is too consumed
with larger government interven-
"(Dingell has) been in the posi-
tion where he thinks every solution
starts and ends in Washington D.C.,
and that's just not the case," Steele
Because of the vast differences
tive for Michigan's 15th Congressional district
between the candidates, Barrett
urged students to become informed
and vote. She wrote that Dingell
feels it is important for students to
be involved in the election.
"He wants to make sure students
are aware and vote on Tuesday," she
wrote. "As he says, our young people
are only a quarter of our popula-
tion, but they are 100 percent of our
PROPOSAL 2: PROHIBIT FELONS FROM H OLDING ELECTIVE OFFICE
BY CLAIRE GOSCICKI
Want to know if it's any good?
Enter it into the Daily's
Home Brew Competition.
FOR MORE INFORMATION
One of two statewide proposals
on the upcoming November
ballot, Proposal 10-2 is reconsider-
ing the state's current criteria for
who can and cannot run for elect-
ed office or work in certain public
If approved, the proposal would
amend the state's constitution by
prohibiting people from holding
future elected, appointed or public
employment if they have committed
a crime in the preceding 20 years.
The crime has to have involved dis-
honesty, deceit, fraud or a breach of
public trust related to that person's
official capacity in an elected or
The new legislation comes after
Michigan government officials
Kwame Kilpatrick and Monica
Conyers, among others, received
criminal charges in recent years for
felonies committed while serving
the city of Detroit.
State Senator Tupac Hunter (D-
Detroit), in an interview with The
Associated Press, said the proposal
is about "sending an anti-corrup-
tion message to officeholders and
In a Sept. 23 press release issued
by his office, Hunter - who spon-
sored the proposal when it was in
development in the Senate - said
the proposal will give voters the
chance to "clean up government."
"Proposal 10-2 will give voters
the chance to...say, once and for all,
that they will not tolerate politi-
cians who use their office or their
jobs at the expense of the people
they serve," Hunter said in the
Senator Mark Jansen (R-Grand
Rapids) has also voiced his support
for the proposal, calling to attention
the importance of integrity in pub-
"Integrity is of the utmost impor-
tance for our public officials who
have the responsibility to impact
public policy or spend taxpayer dol-
lars," he said in the Sept. 23 press
Vincent Hutchings, a professor
in the University's political sci-
ence department and a research
professor at the Institute for Social
Research, said he doubts there are
a large number of voters who are
particularly interested in the issue
"It seems to me that there's a con-
cern out there that the people who
are currently in office are engaged
in corrupt actions," he said, "...not
that people who are guilty will get
Hutchings, who has studied vot-
ing issues, added that the general
public is probably mostly unedu-
cated about the proposal.
"People aren't combing the
Internet to find out what sort of ini-
tiatives are on the ballot," he said.
"They're concerned about far more
The proposal, if approved, will
take effect on Dec. 18.
BREW YOUR OWN BEER?
Want to know if it's any good? Enter it into the Daily's second annual Home Brew Competition.
E-MAIL CALERO@MICHIGANDAILY.COM FOR MORE INFORMATION.