Michigan residents can share power outage concerns with state officials in virtual town hall
State officials will hold a virtual town hall Tuesday afternoon, where residents can voice their concerns about power outages following several widespread outage events that have occurred in recent months and years.
Michigan leaders vote to change presidential primary election date from March to February
Michigan will become one of the first primaries in the country and the first in the Midwest after a National Democratic Party approved sweeping changes to the primary election calendar for the 2024 election on Saturday.
In outcome of Whitmer case, some see freedom, others danger
That a jury didn't convict any of the four men charged with planning to kidnap Michigan Gov_ Gretchen Whitmer is further evidence of the political polarization in the U_S_ A defense lawyer for one of the men says it shows freedom still exists, and that the men's actions were nothing more than “rough talk.”.
Surge of COVID cases prompts Rep. Debbie Dingell to hold virtual town hall
This was the chance for viewers to have a pretty intimate discussion with State Rep. Debbie Dingell and other leaders about COVID-19.Everyone involved had the chance to really speak their minds on where we are in the pandemic.
EPA looks to tighten rules for lead in drinking water while president works to replace pipelines
The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is looking to tighten rules for allowable levels of lead in drinking water while the Biden Administration is looking to replace the country’s lead lines using new funds.
Willow Run Airport awarded more than $15 million in federal funding for upgrades
Senators Debbie Stabenow (MI), Gary Peters (MI) announced on Tuesday that Willow Run Airport will receive $15,275,685 from the Department of Transportation. The airport will use the Federal Aviation Administration grant to improve its existing runways. “I’m pleased to announce this federal grant, which will help improve Willow Run’s daily operations.”“Investing in Willow Run Airport will support economic development in the region,” Senator Stabenow said in a release. “Willow Run Airport is a critical gateway for our local economy in Ypsilanti and Washtenaw, as well as throughout the entire tri-county area,” Congresswoman Dingell said in a release. “With more than $15 million in federal funds, Willow Run can make critical improvements to their runway that will keep pilots and passengers safe, while increasing cargo capability arriving at and departing from the airport.
How Michigan’s women lawmakers are breaking barriers
DETROIT – A group of Michigan women hold powerful positions in Washington, D.C., representing all of us in the House of Representatives and Senate. Rep. Rashida Tlaib is one of the first two Muslim women elected to Congress. When it comes to Michigan’s voices in the halls of power, many of those voices are women. “I believe in listening to people, hearing what they really have to say,” Dingell said. “She said, ‘Make sure you always know that you’re representing women everywhere.’”And women everywhere now look to Michigan for their advice.
COVID-19 law sparks dialogue on nursing home alternatives
Now, the COVID-19 relief bill is offering states a generous funding boost for home- and community-based care as an alternative to institutionalizing disabled people. (AP Photo/Charles Krupa)WASHINGTON – With the memory of the pandemic's toll in nursing homes still raw, the COVID-19 relief law is offering states a generous funding boost for home- and community-based care as an alternative to institutionalizing disabled people. As it has grown to cover about 1 in 5 Americans, it's also become the nation's default long-term care program, although qualifying is often an arduous process. While the federal government requires state Medicaid programs to cover nursing home care for low-income people, that's not the case for home- and community-based support services. For now, states and advocates for the disabled are awaiting guidance from the federal Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services on how the money in the COVID-19 law can be spent.
Michigan lawmakers join 7UP workers picketing in Redford
REDFORD, Mich. – For the 10th day in a row, 7UP workers picket outside the distribution center in Redford. Workers said they are on strike to fight a two-tier wage system and for a fair disciplinary process. “He worked for this company and he’s out here saying he’s never seen anything like this. “They’re not going to let their jobs get diminished. We’re not going to work for a second-tier wage.”Parent company Keurig Dr Pepper released the following statement regarding the strike:
House Democrats vow to pass minimum wage hike
The version sent to the Senate won’t include a plan to raise the minimum wage. “When it comes to the minimum wage, I am going to be one of the loudest screamers about it,” Dingell said Feb. 7. “There will be a lot of discussions about minimum wage and you may see it being moved as a separate bill,” Dingell said. The last time the federal minimum wage was raised was July 24, 2009. It is currently the longest period the U.S. has gone without raising the federal minimum wage since it was instituted in 1938.
Michigan Democrats call for federal COVID relief funds to be released immediately
LANSING, Mich. – Michigan Democrats are pressuring state Republicans to vote to release more than $5 billion in COVID relief, chastising them for holding the funds. “Republicans need to stop holding these federal stimulus dollars hostage. This is not a partisan issue, these dollars should be at work here in Michigan right now,” said Michigan House Minority Leader Donna Lasinski. READ: Michigan Republicans unveil $2B COVID relief plan for residents struggling due to shutdownsRepublicans have held funding, hoping to get Gov. In a statement, a spokesperson for Michigan House Speaker Jason Wentworth said, “Our plan addresses all needs...
Michigan officials walk seniors through COVID vaccine sign up process amid confusion
Beyond getting the actual shot, getting signed up for a vaccination appointment can be a huge and confusing process for elderly residents -- especially since computers are needed to do so. Congresswoman Debbie Dingell, from Michigan, had called on the state to set up a phone system to help simplify the appointment scheduling process for seniors. On Thursday, the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) held a virtual COVID vaccine information session, hearing from seniors who are beyond frustrated by the sign up process. Michigan health officials walked seniors through the state’s COVID vaccine website, where individuals are advised to seek information about vaccinations in their local communities. Officials then encouraged seniors to call 2-1-1 for assistance with scheduling a vaccination appointment, especially if they do not have access to the internet or a computer.
Cheney says she won't quit the House after Wyoming censure
FILE - In this March 6, 2019, file photo, Rep. Liz Cheney, R-Wyo., speaks during a news conference on Capitol Hill in Washington. The Wyoming Republican Party voted overwhelmingly Saturday, Feb. 6, 2021 to censure U.S. Rep. Liz Cheney for voting to impeach President Donald Trump for his role in the Jan. 6 riot at the U.S. Capitol. On Saturday, the Wyoming Republican Party voted overwhelmingly to censure Cheney. Ad“We need to honor President Trump. About two-thirds of House Republicans voted to back Trump’s effort to overturn his November election loss — just hours after his supporters’ deadly siege of the Capitol.
Flashpoint 2/7/21: SOS puts forth her prescription for strengthening Michigan’s elections
DETROIT – A million vaccines have been distributed in Michigan, which sounds like a lot, until you realize it isn’t nearly enough. On Sunday’s episode we turned to one of the leading authorities on vaccines. Dr. Arnold Monto, a professor of epidemiology at the University of Michigan School of Public Health spoke about where we stand on vaccine distribution. And Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson puts forth her prescription for strengthening Michigan’s elections. The state leader spoke about the issue more on Sunday.
Rep. Debbie Dingell pushes own vaccine fears aside to set example for others
Like many Americans, one congresswoman has some fears about receiving a coronavirus vaccine -- but she says that shouldn’t stop anyone from receiving their shot. Congresswoman Debbie Dingell, from Michigan, tells Local 4 that her personal experience with vaccinations has made her fearful about receiving a COVID-19 vaccine. However, the congresswoman says she has been assured by several experts -- including the nation’s top infectious disease expert Dr. Anthony Fauci -- that the COVID vaccine is not dangerous and will not affect her the same way. She says despite her fears, she is going to receive the vaccine when it’s her turn. She also hopes that anyone who is scared like her will overcome their fear of the vaccine and get vaccinated when they can.
Michigan lawmakers frustrated with vaccine rollout as most vulnerable struggle to get vaccinated
Ann Mapes is a Michigan senior who didn’t need to show identification, she was just asked to roll up her sleeve. We have to make the system work for everybody.”READ: Tracking COVID-19 cases, deaths by Michigan countyThe only local county leader to speak with the Local 4 Defenders was Macomb County executive Mark Hackel. Macomb County has 165,000 people over the age of 65. Gretchen Whitmer opened the state to Phase 1B to include more people, the number of Macomb County Reisdents eligible to be vaccinated jumped to 265,000. The state sent Macomb County 7,200 doses this week -- enough to last the county two days, Hackel said.
Dingell staffer joins Biden administration, becomes first Arab American to serve in Office of Congressional and Intergovernmental Affairs
According to Dingell, Ramadan will become the first Arab American to serve in the Office of Congressional and Intergovernmental Affairs. Ahmad will also be the first Arab American to serve in the Office of Congressional and Intergovernmental Affairs and I have no doubt he will continue to build broad coalitions throughout our federal government. It is with tremendous gratitude to both Rep. Debbie Dingell and my colleagues that I look back on my two years as a member of team Dingell. I’m honored to serve in the Biden administration and hope to make you proud. I can’t wait to celebrate the success and appointments of many more individuals in the near future,” said Ramadan.
Metro Detroit leaders respond to the repeal of Trump’s ‘Muslim travel ban’
DETROIT – One of President Joe Biden’s first moves in the White House was to repeal former President Donald Trump’s travel ban on people from several predominantly Muslim countries. When Trump enacted the travel ban, thousands of Metro Detroiters protested nearly immediately. Initially the ban restricted travel from many Middle Eastern countries. And when visa applicants request entry to the United States, we will apply a rigorous, individualized vetting system. But we will not turn our backs on our values with discriminatory bans on entry into the United States.
Democratic Michigan leaders eager to ‘get to work’ with Biden, Harris sworn in
Senator Debbie Stabenow, from Michigan“It was such an honor to witness history today as President Biden and Vice President Harris were sworn into office. More than a trailblazer and trusted voice for President Biden, Vice President Harris will fight for justice and equality in this nation. And I look forward to getting the job done with President Biden and Vice President Harris.” Rep. DingellU.S. Representative Rashida Tlaib, Michigan’s 13th district“I congratulate President Joe Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris on their historic inauguration. The inauguration of President Biden and Vice President Harris completed the peaceful transfer of power as required by our Constitution. The success of President Biden and Vice President Harris will be a success we all share.
Washtenaw County law enforcement, Rep. Debbie Dingell release joint statement ahead of presidential inauguration
ANN ARBOR – Rep. Debbie Dingell and police departments across Washtenaw County have released a joint statement about community safety ahead of Inauguration Day. Although the group said no imminent threat within the county leading up to the inauguration has been reported, officials said they are working closely with their state and federal colleagues to ensure the community remains safe. “Together, we have been monitoring the activities related to the attack on the Capitol building in Washington D.C. and the subsequent fallout leading to the upcoming Presidential Inauguration,” read the statement. Ahead of expected armed protests this weekend at Michigan’s Capitol, Michigan State Police, the Michigan National Guard and the FBI now have an increased presence at the building and throughout downtown Lansing. To see the full statement, click here.
Fury at the shaken Capitol over the attack, security, virus
Scott Applewhite)WASHINGTON – This time the fury enveloping the U.S. Capitol comes not from an insurgent mob but from within. The anger on display is searing — Democrat against Republican; Republican against Republican; legislators of both parties against the catastrophic security failure that left top leaders of the government vulnerable to last week's violence as well as to the coronavirus in their ranks. Shaken members, long accustomed to protective bubbles, inquired whether they can expense their own bulletproof vests to taxpayers (yes they can). McCarthy had joined most House Republicans in December in supporting a lawsuit to block Biden’s election, and again last week in two votes against certifying Biden’s win. In their oath of office, lawmakers vow to defend the Constitution “against all enemies, foreign and domestic.”
Fury at the shaken Capitol over the attack, security, virus
Scott Applewhite)WASHINGTON – This time the fury enveloping the Capitol comes not from an insurgent mob but from within. The anger on display is searing — Democrat against Republican; Republican against Republican; legislators of both parties against the catastrophic security failure that left top leaders of the government vulnerable to last week's violence as well as to the coronavirus in their ranks. Shaken members, long accustomed to protective bubbles, inquired whether they can expense their own bulletproof vests to taxpayers (yes they can). McCarthy had joined most House Republicans in December in supporting a lawsuit to block Biden’s election, and again last week in two votes against certifying Biden’s win. In their oath of office, lawmakers vow to defend the Constitution “against all enemies, foreign and domestic.”
Congress members could face $1,000 fine for not wearing a face mask under proposed legislation
A second Democratic member of the House who was forced to go into lockdown during last weeks violent protest has tested positive for COVID-19. Rep. Pramila Jayapal of Washington says she has tested positive. She criticized Republican members of Congress who declined to wear a mask when it was offered to them. (Graeme Jennings/Pool via AP)Lawmakers are proposing that members of Congress should be fined if they do not wear a face mask on Capitol grounds after several representatives tested positive for COVID-19 this week. The legislation comes after multiple lawmakers tested positive for the virus this week following the attack on the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6 -- a potential super-spreader event.
Michigan’s members of Congress weigh in on possible second impeachment of President Trump
The U.S. House of Representatives geared up to move forward with impeachment, with proceedings on Monday led by Michigan Congresswoman Debbie Dingell. During the short session Monday morning, Democrats tried to pass a resolution urging Vice President Mike Pence to invoke the 25th Amendment. Michigan’s members of Congress weighed in on a possible second impeachment of President Donald Trump. So far, none of Michigan’s Republican members have said whether they will vote for the articles of impeachment introduced Monday. “We will act with urgency, because this President represents an imminent threat,” Pelosi said in a letter late Sunday to colleagues.
‘They didn’t care if they hurt people’ -- Michigan lawmakers react to deadly DC riots
DETROIT – Michigan members of Congress shared details of the violent and deadly siege on the U.S. Capitol Building Wednesday. READ: Michigan lawmakers respond to deadly siege on US Capitol BuildingMembers of Congress continue to reel from the insurrection on Capitol Hill as stories of fear, chaos and bravery have come out. Bill Huizenga was one of them trying to take benches to try and secure the chamber,” said Rep. Debbie Dingell. “I started seeing clips and began to realize that there were mobs that didn’t care if they hurt people or damaged people,” Dingell recalled. Michigan officials are calling for the removal of Maddock and any representative who participated in the violence.
Dingell renews push to change drunk driving law 2 years after Abbas family tragedy
DETROIT – It’s been two years since a drunk driver took the lives of a Metro Detroit family. All five in the vehicle, Issam Abbas, 42, Rima Abbas, 38, Ali Abbas, 14, Isabella Abbas, 13, and Giselle Abbas, 7, died. “The beautiful, young Abbas family was stolen from us by a drunk driver who never should have been behind the wheel of a car. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety released a study in July 2020 which found that more than 9,400 drunk driving deaths could be prevented each year when drunk driving prevention technology is made standard on every new car. Also see: Fund established in honor of Dearborn family killed in drunk driving crashLegislation Introduced Calling for Drunk Driving Safety & Technology Standards
Michigan lawmakers respond to deadly siege on US Capitol Building
DETROIT – Some Michigan lawmakers are calling for President Donald Trump to be removed from office as they recount the terrifying moments when they were told to hide and find shelter. READ: Michigan lawmakers call on Pence to invoke 25th Amendment to remove Trump from officeThe deadly siege on the U.S. Capitol Building took place while the entire Congress was on their respective floors. Sen. Debbie Stabenow described the chaos and confusion Thursday morning and said many staffers were visibly upset after reaching a secure location. Related: Michigan Rep. Debbie Dingell on Capitol riot: ‘They were attacking what is the symbol of our country and our democracy’“They opened some back doors and -- without telling us exactly what was happening -- they started yelling ‘Go go go go go!’” Stabenow recalled. Related: Michigan GOP Rep. Lisa McClain describes situation inside U.S. CapitolMore coverage
Michigan Rep. Debbie Dingell on Capitol riot: ‘They were attacking what is the symbol of our country and our democracy’
Michigan Rep. Debbie Dingell (D-Dearborn) has offered a description of what is was like to be in the U.S. House chambers on Wednesday when pro-Trump rioters stormed the Capitol building. “They were attacking the symbol of our country and our democracy, and we have to fight for it.”Rep. Debbie Dingell of Michigan gives @SavannahGuthrie a firsthand account of what it was like inside the Capitol as pro-Trump rioters broke in on Wednesday afternoon. You saw law enforcement obviously engaged on the floor. You saw law enforcement then -- their protection detail -- take leadership very quickly off of the floor. “They were attacking what is the symbol of our country and our democracy, and we have to fight for it, all of us ...
House Democrats prepared to defend Michigan election results in Congress
LANSING, Mich. – Michigan’s house Democrats said they plan to defend Michigan’s election results if there is an objection Wednesday in Congress. President-Elect Joe Biden, who won the Electoral College 306-232, is set to be inaugurated Jan. 20. WATCH: Congress holds Electoral College confirmation vote for BidenThe process is ceremonial and is typically a smooth and easy process. Some members of congress who may object were on the ballot in the same election,” said Michigan Rep. Dan Kildee. “As they continue to sow doubt in Michigan’s election results when it comes to the presidential election, they have no issue taking their own oath of office a few days ago.
Flashpoint 1/3/21: Revisiting conversation on grief with poet, undertaker and philosopher Thomas Lynch
DETROIT – The year 2021 is here and for many it could not come soon enough. Still, does change on the calendar and in the White House mean a change of fortunes for so many struggling Americans? There was a roundtable discussion on the topic Sunday with guests. And with so much loss and heartache compounding every day we revisited a conversation with poet, essayist, undertaker and philosopher Thomas Lynch on processing grief in isolation. Segment OneMichigan Democratic Congresswoman, Debbie Dingell; Nolan Finley, editorial page editor of the Detroit News; Detroit journalist, Stephen Henderson; Sandy K. Baruah, president and CEO of the Detroit Regional ChamberSegment TwoPoet, essayist, undertaker and philosopher Thomas Lynch.
Trump signs massive measure funding government, COVID relief
The bill was passed with what lawmakers had thought was Trump's blessing, and after months of negotiations with his administration. It was unclear what, if anything, Trump accomplished with his delay, beyond angering all sides and empowering Democrats to continue their push for higher relief checks, which his own party opposes. In his statement, Trump repeated his frustrations with the COVID-19 relief bill for providing only $600 checks to most Americans instead of the $2,000 that his fellow Republicans already rejected. Lawmakers now have breathing room to continue debating whether the relief checks should be as large as the president has demanded. Aside from unemployment benefits and relief payments to families, money for vaccine distribution, businesses and more was on the line.
Unemployment benefits for millions in limbo as Trump rages
Unemployment benefits for millions of Americans struggling to make ends meet were set to lapse at midnight Saturday night unless Trump signed an end-of-year COVID relief and spending bill that had been considered a done deal before his sudden objections. Lauren Bauer, a fellow in economic studies at the Brookings Institution, has calculated that 11 million people would lose aid from the programs immediately without additional relief; millions more would exhaust other unemployment benefits within weeks. He said he will be left with no income by the second week of January if Trump fails to sign the bill. McCarthy said he already burned through much of his savings as he waited five months to begin receiving his unemployment benefits. She is receiving about $125 a week under the pandemic unemployment program and says she will be unable to pay her bills in about a month.
GOP blocks $2,000 checks as Trump leaves COVID aid in chaos
The congressional Republican leaders have been left almost speechless by Trump’s year-end scorching of their work. Instead, Washington is now hurtling toward a crisis with COVID aid about to collapse, as the president is at his Mar-a-Lago club. Many have opposed larger $2,000 checks as too costly and poorly targeted. Even if the House is able to approve Trump's $2,000 checks on Monday, that measure would likely die in the GOP-controlled Senate, which is due back in session on Tuesday. The year-end package Trump railed against as a “disgrace” is the product of months of work.
Michigan members of Congress weigh in on COVID stimulus status
LANSING, Mich. – Members of the Michigan delegation are weighing in on the stimulus stalemate. With President Donald Trump’s demand for $2,000 checks, some democrats are finding themselves in a pretty unusual situation. Trump’s sudden demand for $2,000 checks for most Americans was swiftly rejected by House Republicans on ThursdayREAD: GOP blocks $2,000 checks as Trump leaves COVID aid in chaosCongresswoman Debbie Dingell spoke out in Washington on Thursday. Republicans blocked the bill in part because they wanted to cut foreign aid before sending larger checks to Americans. The rare Christmas Eve session of the House lasted just minutes, with help for millions of Americans awaiting Trump’s signature on the bill.