Poll's message to pols: Fix this mess

LANSING - A new poll of Michigan residents shows broad dissatisfaction with the performance of state government and deep concern about economic-related issues. Michiganders had the most negative view about the direction of their state in the five-state Midwestern survey: 16 percent right track, 81 percent wrong track.

The poll points out that concerns about money in state politics are on par with concerns about health care, state taxes and public education. Seventy-three percent of residents say they trust state government only “some of the time” or “almost never.” Only 21 percent believe Governor Granholm is doing a “good job” while 11 percent believe the Michigan Legislature is doing a “good job.”

Despite this poor regard for state government, Michiganders expressed optimism that a number of specific political reforms could improve the performance of state government. By a margin of two-to-one, Michiganders say they are inclined to support candidates who recognize that political reform is essential to making progress on “bread and butter” economic issues.

“Michiganders are deeply disappointed in the overall performance of their state government,” said Rich Robinson of the Michigan Campaign Finance Network. “They see a dysfunctional political environment holding back progress on critical economic issues. The presidential candidates have shown an understanding of this desire for better politics and better government, and it’s about time for state politicians to get on board.”

The comprehensive poll was conducted by Belden Russonello and Stewart for the Midwest Democracy Network, a coalition of political reform organizations in Illinois, Michigan, Minnesota, Ohio and Wisconsin. The Michigan Campaign Finance Network is a state partner in the Midwest Democracy Network.

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