80ºF

Flashpoint: Latest from Lansing, Lewand previews Lions season

photo

DETROIT – This week, Devin Scillian and the Flashpoint panel talked about some of the most pressing issues going on for lawmakers in Lansing. Devin asked the panel about the process that ruled on Reps. Todd Courser and Cindy Gamrat, who faced expulsion after they tried to cover up an affair.

Randy Richardville, former Michigan Senate Majority Leader, said that the process and the voting took too long. He said their number one allegiance is to their constituents, but as a leader, it's to the institutions. He said the institutions suffered as a result of the incident.

Detroit Free Press columnist Brian Dickerson called it "a political embarrassment" for republicans and "a political opportunity" for democrats. He said the decision happened quickly once it was put to work, compared to past instances.

Nolan Finley, of the Detroit News, said democrats wanted to drag more embarrassment out of the details and called it "your typical bungling" by the leadership and the product of inexperience and term limits.

"The truth of the matter is this has been a joke for five weeks now," said Portia Roberson of the Detroit Div. of Ethics and Civial Rights. "It was time for them both to go."

The panel continued to talk about the ruling and what it means for Lansing. You can watch the entire conversation in the video posted above.

In the second segment, Devin asked the panel about the intersection of people working their jobs and upholding their religious beliefs.

Roberson said that if religion stops somebody from doing the crux of their job, then it isn't the job for them.

"If you've been there for 15 or 20 years doing a job and you have religious beliefs that are sincere, and I believe they were in this case, and you've been told 'hey your job changed and you have to do this from now on,' was there somebody else there who could have done it?" Richardville said. He talked about how bills presented when he was in the House accommodated peoples' religious beliefs.

Dickerson said that there isn't a legal issue because she's only being asked to certify that people applying for a marriage license meet the criteria established by law. He said she got put in jail because she was ordered by a federal judge to do something and she didn't do it.

You can watch the rest of the conversation in the video below.

35249900

In the final segment, Lions president Tom Lewand talked about the upcoming season and expectations for the team coming off a playoff berth.

Lewand talked about the role young players and new draft picks will play this season and even touched on the negotitations that ended with star defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh leaving Detroit to play for the Miami Dolphins.

Click on the video below to see that interview with Lewand.

35249902

In the web-only segment, Devin spoke with Brent Bittenbender, a community activist from Detroit's east side, about his efforts to raise money for children's school supplies and after school activities.

You can find out more at revolution313.com.

The interview is posted in the video below.

35249904