Washington Post features Snyder, Detroit work

Washington Post features Snyder, Detroit work

“Less than a year ago, Snyder pushed Detroit into bankruptcy. Now he’s an unlikely driving force rallying the rest of the state to help this overwhelmingly Democratic city back on its feet,” The Washington Post observes. “It’s not unusual considering that Snyder, 55, has become one of the most hard-to-pin-down Republicans in the country.”

The politics surrounding Detroit’s bankruptcy in the city and the state capitol haven’t gone unnoticed by local columnists, reporters and politicos. But this week, The Washington Post took note. Calling him a unique Republican, the Post reviews several of the governor’s initiatives, with a large focus on his Detroit-related efforts. The Post finds some of them are seemingly at odds with the usual Republican party platform:

Like some other GOP governors, Snyder has signed controversial right-to-work legislation preventing unions from requiring workers to pay dues — a crushing defeat for organized labor in a state that was once a hub of union power. Working with a GOP-controlled legislature, he also has cut unemployment benefits and slashed business taxes while imposing a new tax on pensioners.

But unlike many Republican governors, he pushed to expand Medicaid and is encouraging immigration of high-skill workers. He vetoed legislation requiring voters to have government-issued identification. And while Snyder forced Detroit into bankruptcy, he has become perhaps the most influential advocate for an aid plan to put the city back on sound financial footing.

The Post notes only 5 percent of Detroiters casting gubernatorial ballots in 2010 did so for the “one tough nerd.” But that hasn’t lessened his interest in the city’s restructuring. The Post writes Snyder has “earned grudging praise” from some Democrats in Michigan.

November — and history — will show how deserved that is.