Skubick Analysis: Can Whitmer and Senate Republican leader agree on budget fix?


LANSING, Mich (WLNS) – On the surface, it looked like there were two parts to the governor’s news conference today, one having to do with the massive state budget deficit and the need for cooperation from Washington to solve that problem.

And then her kerfuffle with the Senate Republican leader, Mike Shirkey.

And while they may not appear to be related on the surface, if you go underneath, they are inextricably related because the governor can probably not resolve the state budget crisis unless she has the cooperation of the Senate Republican leader.

And so she said this after she earlier said that she was distressed that he called her a liar yesterday.

“He called me names earlier. And you know what I did? I sent him a cake. That’s what going. Hi. Looks like I’m going to keep doing that in hopes that eventually these emotions will start getting the better of him. And I’ll come back to the table and start to work with me to really make sure that we’ve got a great agenda that supports the economic rebound we all want to see.”

So if there is help from Washington, the governor is confident they can solve the budget crisis.

But as the budget director Chris Kolb said, without help from Washington, essential state services, education, public safety will take some hits.

The question is, how deep are the hits?

And the other question is, can Mr. Shirkey and this governor put their act back together again?

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