Tim Skubick: Can Snyder win 2nd term despite raising taxes?

Tim Skubick: Can Snyder win 2nd term despite raising taxes?

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LANSING, Mich. (WJBK) - After raising taxes during his first year as governor, Jim Blanchard ran the second time as the “Comeback Kid” and was victorious.

Hum.

Didn’t Gov. Rick Snyder raises taxes his first year in office?  

Isn’t he running as the Comeback Governor from the Comeback state?

And so is Mr. Snyder poised to pull a Blanchard second term win out of the hat despite raising taxes?

Not yet, if GOP pollster Tom Shields is correct.

While the Snyder team can hawk the comeback theme, if the voters don’t buy it, it won’t work.

Voters “are split on whether or not we’ve made that jump that things are real positive.  They’re really positive about the things getting better next year.  They think things have gotten better in the last year,” he explains but then this, “but they are not quite sure Michigan is 100% over the hump.”

Does that mean some are not embracing the comeback mantra?

“Not yet.  They think it will be” but they aren’t there and therein lies the opening Mark Schauer must exploit if the Democrats have any hopes of pulling an upset win in November.

Mr. Shields, who has been at this game for decades, concludes the Snyder guys have an easier sell:  Don’t change economic horses in the middle of the stream.

Mr. Scahuer must  sell not one but two products.  (1)  The other guys plan is a piece of junk and (2) my strategy will do better.  “It is the tougher sell,” the GOP consultant asserts.

Having said that he also believes “the governor will not run away with this.  He is not that popular,” which leaves another opening for Mr. Schauer to capitalize upon.

But history is on the incumbent’s side. Michigan voters tend to re-elect incumbents.  Which is where the irony comes in.

Mr. Blanchard won on the Comeback theme but four years later lost to John Engler.  Lesson learned: Incumbents can be knocked off if they get too cocky that nobody can beat them.

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