Governor Rick Snyder, who is finishing eight years in office, is telling 6 News Capitol Correspondent Tim Skubick that it’s a good thing that he didn’t have political experience when he became governor.
But not everybody at the state capitol agrees.
When Rick Snyder was sworn in he had zippo political experience.
Voters wanted an outsider business guy to run state government.
Now as he prepares to leave office and life in the political meat grinder, he is reflecting on those eight years, including that debate about the need for political experience.
Skubick: “If you had had more hands-on political experience, would you have been a better governor?”
Gov. Snyder: “I don’t know the answer to that.”
Skubick: “What does your gut tell you?”
Gov. Snyder: “No.”
The governor concludes, “I think its a good thing not to have it.”
But if you ask around town you will find many of the players who argue Mr. Snyder would have handled some issues differently.
Such as the Flint water crisis or his failed effort to raise enough money to really fix the roads.
But the governor wonders about the credibility of those players, as he thinks political experience is a mixed bag.
Gov. Snyder: “On average there are a bunch of issue where it would be good to have the political experience and in my heart there would have been a whole bunch where it would not have a negative.”
Skubick: “If we did a poll in this town I’ll bet you a vast majority would say it’s better to have that experience.”
Gov. Snyder: “The vast majority of people never thought I’d be governor. (smiles)”
Other governors who had plenty of experience often got into battles for votes with recalcitrant lawmakers from both parties. John Engler would be Exhibit A.
Governor Rick Snyder would be Exhibit Zero.
Confrontation was not his style; in fact, he loathed it.
Gov. Snyder: “Whether people liked me or not, hopefully they can say I’ve never personalized this, have not bullied anyone. I’ve not fought with anyone and I’ve paid some price for that, people have said if he not going to fight back, go after him even more.”
Skubick: “Did you ever call out people on that and say I know what you are doing and it’s not going to work so knock it off?”
Gov. Snyder: “No, because again I’m not there for confrontation. I’m there to serve.”