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Top 10 From CapCon In ‘21: What Made You Look This Year

Here are the top 10 stories in 2021 for Michigan Capitol Confidential, based on page views.

No. 1

Date: Jan. 12, 2021

Headline: “Citing the American Revolution … Baraga County Officials Revolt Against State COVID Orders”

Several Baraga County commissioners, plus the sheriff, prosecuting attorney, clerk, and treasurer of the Upper Peninsula county, have all signed a manifesto that places the state on notice that they will no longer enforce the state's COVID-19 mandates and restrictions.

No. 2

Date: June 11, 2021

Headline: “Attorney General Wanted Lockdown-Defying Restaurant Owner Arrested Before Going On Fox News”

After learning that a Holland woman who defied state lockdown orders by keeping her restaurant open might go on Fox News to tell her story, Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel said in a March 12, 2021, email to her staff:

“Do we know her whereabouts? We should just have her picked up before she goes on. This is outrageous.”

Restaurant owner Marlena Hackney was arrested by the Michigan State Police seven days later, on March 19.

No. 3

Date: April 14, 2021

Headline: “Whitmer Administration: Face Masks For Everyone; They’ll Let You Know When They Can Come Off”

The administration of Gov. Gretchen Whitmer is drafting permanent rules that, once adopted, would impose an indefinite mandate for employees and customers to wear face masks.

No. 4

Date: Oct. 1, 2021

Headline: “’All White People Are Invested In And Collude With Racism,’ Says Author of MEA Book Club Selection”

The Michigan Education Association’s Center for Leadership & Learning Book Studies currently lists three book recommendations for participants to choose from: “White Fragility” by Robin DiAngelo, “How to Be an Anti-Racist” by Ibram X. Kendi, and “Safe is Not Enough – Better Schools for LGBTQ Students” by Michael Sadowski.

No. 5

Date: Jan. 27, 2021

Headline: “State Senate GOP Shuts Down Whitmer Board Appointments Until Lockdowns Lifted”

The Michigan Senate refused to confirm 13 individuals appointed by Gov. Gretchen Whitmer to various state boards and commissions. In a party-line vote, the Senate’s GOP majority defeated the nominations 19-14.

On Jan. 13, Republican state Sen. Jim Stamas stated in a press release that Whitmer’s appointments would be rejected until the administration ended COVID lockdowns and permitted the state to reopen.

No. 6

Date: Nov. 26, 2021

Headline: “Four Hospitals That Take Federal Money To Help Low-Income Patients Do Less To Help Than Those That Don’t”

A new issue brief published by the Pacific Research Institute finds four Michigan hospitals that take federal dollars from a government program to help low-income patients with drug costs assisted fewer at-risk people than hospitals that don’t use the program. The study also found the participating hospitals are more profitable than nonparticipating hospitals.

No. 7

Date: Jan. 11, 2021

Headline: “Metrics Appear To Meet Goals Specified To Reopen Michigan”

The state of Michigan appears to have met the three key metrics that officials said would determine whether they will allow the current COVID-19 lockdown to be lifted. Officials said they wanted them to decline, and all three have fallen since the current lockdown was ordered on Nov. 15, 2020.

No. 8

Date: Feb. 23, 2021

Headline: “Whitmer Declares Energy Emergency – Appears Short Of Legal Standard”

Gov. Gretchen Whitmer sent mixed signals in declaring a statewide energy emergency on Feb. 20, casting doubt on whether she met the legal standard for such a declaration.

A 1982 state law defines an “energy emergency” as a condition of danger to the health, safety, or welfare of the residents of this state due to an impending or present energy shortage.

Whitmer’s comments in the press release announcing the energy emergency, however, suggest there is no impending danger.

No. 9

Date: Feb. 15, 2021

Headline: “Whitmer’s Pandemic Management Inspires Pro-Indiana Billboards”

A Coldwater man who owns radio stations in Indiana has commissioned a message on an electronic billboard near Angola, Indiana, to criticize Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer.

One of the billboards states, “Indiana Chamber of Commerce 2020 Business Person of the Year.” It shows a photo of the Michigan governor, with the tagline, “Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer.”

A second billboard states, “Current State of Michigan Business Affairs: Half Full Half Empty.” It then asks, “You Decide?”

No. 10

Date: Feb. 22, 2021

Headline: “After Targeting Gas Pipeline, Whitmer Declares Propane Heating Fuel ‘Emergency’”

Gov. Gretchen Whitmer declared a Michigan energy emergency on Feb. 20 to “ensure adequate propane distribution” for the foreseeable future.

“While I am confident that our state has the energy supply we need to get through these cold winter days, we aren’t taking any chances after what happened in Texas this week,” Whitmer said in a press release.

In November, Whitmer took action to shut down the Line 5 pipeline that supplies much of the propane fuel used in Michigan.

Michigan Capitol Confidential is the news source produced by the Mackinac Center for Public Policy. Michigan Capitol Confidential reports with a free-market news perspective.