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Susan J. Demas

Susan J. Demas is a 21-year journalism veteran and one of the state’s foremost experts on Michigan politics, appearing on MSNBC, CNN, NPR and WKAR-TV’s “Off the Record.” In addition to serving as Editor-in-Chief, she is the Advance’s chief columnist, writing on women, LGBTQs, the state budget, the economy and more. Most recently, she served as Vice President of Farough & Associates, Michigan’s premier political communications firm. For almost five years, Susan was the Editor and Publisher of Inside Michigan Politics, the most-cited political newsletter in the state. Susan’s award-winning political analysis has run in more than 80 national, international and regional media outlets, including the Guardian U.K., NBC News, the New York Times, the Detroit News and MLive. She is the only Michigan journalist to be named to the Washington Post’s list of “Best Political Reporters,” the Huffington Post’s list of “Best Political Tweeters” and the Washington Post’s list of “Best Political Bloggers.” Susan was the recipient of a prestigious Knight Foundation fellowship in nonprofits and politics. She served as Deputy Editor for MIRS News and helped launch the Michigan Truth Squad, the Center for Michigan’s fact-checking project. She started her journalism career reporting on the Iowa caucuses for The (Cedar Rapids) Gazette. Susan has hiked over 4,000 solo miles across four continents and climbed more than 70 mountains. She also enjoys dragging her husband and two teenagers along, even if no one else wants to sleep in a tent anymore.

Former U.S. Rep. Dan Benishek dies at age 69

By: - October 16, 2021

Former U.S. Rep. Dan Benishek (R-Crystal Falls) has died at age 69. Benishek represented the 1st Congressional District spanning the Upper Peninsula and northern Lower Michigan from 2011 until he retired in 2017. He was a surgeon who had five children with his wife, Judy. They had five grandchildren. “We are heartbroken by the sudden loss […]

Battle Creek Kellogg workers picketing against contract givebacks are part of ‘Striketober’

By: - October 15, 2021

Almost 1,400 union workers at four Kellogg plants, including Battle Creek, have been on strike since last week — and they’re part of a growing national movement that supporters like U.S. Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.) have dubbed “Striketober.” “After years of being underserved and taken for granted – & doubly so during the pandemic – […]

COMMENTARY

Susan J. Demas: Killing all vaccine mandates was always the plan for extremists

By: - October 15, 2021

There’s been a growing, and understandable, horror that some Republican leaders are agitating against any vaccine mandates after pandering to angry conspiracy theorists for almost two years on COVID-19. This should be regarded as unequivocally insane, as vaccines are really great at the all-important societal goal of preventing death. However, recent polling shows a sharp […]

Whitmer: Goal is to replace all Benton Harbor lead service lines in 18 mos.

By: - October 14, 2021

Gov. Gretchen Whitmer on Thursday signed an executive directive aimed at coordinating her administration’s efforts on safe drinking water for Benton Harbor. Whitmer said the state is committed to expediting lead service line replacements using additional federal, state and local resources, with the goal of replacing 100% of lead service lines in Benton Harbor in 18 months. That comes after Benton Harbor received […]

Former U.S. Rep. Dale Kildee dies at 92

By: - October 13, 2021

Updated and corrected, 3:10 p.m., 10/13/21, with additional comments Former U.S. Rep. Dale Kildee (D-Flint) has died at the age of 92. Kildee served in Congress from 1977 until he retired in 2013. He was succeeded by his nephew, U.S. Rep. Dan Kildee (D-Flint), who is now the longest-serving member of Michigan’s Democratic House delegation […]

Feds OK Michigan COVID relief plan for K-12 schools, releasing $1.2B in funds

By: - October 8, 2021

Michigan’s plan for spending federal COVID-19 relief money on K-12 schools got the approval Friday from the U.S. Department of Education — which will unlock a final $1.2 billion in funding. “I am excited to announce approval of Michigan’s plan,” said U.S. Secretary of Education Miguel Cardona. “It is heartening to see, reflected in these […]

The Legislature got rid of prevailing wage in 2018, but Whitmer just brought it back

By: - October 7, 2021

Updated, 3:08 p.m., 8:13 p.m. 10/7/21 with comments from Whitmer’s office Democratic Gov. Gretchen Whitmer on Thursday announced that she’s bringing back prevailing wage for state construction projects. That comes after a 2018 ballot measure, backed by the Associated Builders and Contractors of Michigan (ABC), was enacted by the GOP-led Legislature killing the prevailing wage. […]

COMMENTARY

Susan J. Demas: How do you solve poverty? Throw money at the problem.

By: - October 7, 2021

If there’s one enduring myth in America, it’s that there’s nothing we can really do to end poverty. Most policy prescriptions during the last few decades — from setting up Byzantine barriers to programs like food stamps and Medicaid to doing nothing at all — are rooted in condescending lore that poor people deserve to […]

Rep. LaFave joins Republican SOS race after Trump endorsed opponent

By: - October 4, 2021

State Rep. Beau LaFave (R-Iron Mountain) said in a Facebook post Monday morning that he plans to run for secretary of state in 2022. However, President Donald Trump last month already endorsed another Republican running who has spread conspiracy theories about the 2020 election he lost. Trump’s pick is Kristina Karamo, a former GOP poll […]

New: Whitmer vetoes GOP bills part of ‘calculated misinformation’ about the 2020 election

By: - October 3, 2021

Updated, 10:21 a.m. 10/4/21 with comments from the NAACP Gov. Gretchen Whitmer on Sunday vetoed three Republican election bills introduced after former President Donald Trump lost the 2020 election as part of a nationwide right-wing effort to restrict voting and change election rules. She also vetoed a fourth measure she said lacked the proper funding. […]

Biden to promote plans for infrastructure, childcare, college and more in Howell

By: - October 3, 2021

President Joe Biden is scheduled to travel to Howell on Tuesday to make the case for his “Build Back Better” agenda to address infrastructure, childcare, college, health care, environmental needs and more, the White House said Sunday afternoon. No other details of the trip were released. The Biden administration has been intensely negotiating in the […]

State Rep. Schroeder dies of stomach cancer

By: - October 1, 2021

State Rep. Andrea Schroeder (R-Independence Twp.) died Friday after battling stomach cancer since 2018, House Speaker Jason Wentworth (R-Clare) has announced. She was 57. Schroeder was first elected in November 2018, a couple months after her diagnosis, and was reelected in 2020. She was a member of the Energy and Rules and Competitiveness committees. She […]