Wednesday, June 20, 2012

McCormack Brings Campaign for High Court to Livingston County

Earlier this month, a Michigan man left prison after 27 years behind bars -- where he never belonged in the first place.

David Gavitt was seriously injured in a 1985 fire that killed his wife and two daughters. He was convicted of arson and murder based on faulty arson testimony and lab results.

Students in the University of Michigan Law School’s Innocence Clinic proved that the fire was accidental and persuaded the prosecutor to dismiss the charges based on the new evidence.

Now the woman who heads the Innocence Clinic will come to Livingston County to talk about her campaign to join the Michigan Supreme Court.

Bridget Mary McCormack is dean of clinical affairs at the U of M Law School. She will speak on Wednesday, June 27, at 7 p.m. at Livingston County Democratic Party headquarters, 10321 Grand River Road, Suite 600, in Brighton.

McCormack is one of three candidates endorsed by the Michigan Democratic Party for three seats on the state's highest court being filled in November. The other two endorsed by the party are the Hon. Shelia Johnson of Oakland County and the Hon. Connie Kelley of Wayne County.

Although they are endorsed by the party, their names will appear on the non-partisan section of the ballot, as is the case with all candidates for the high court. Voters must vote for the judicial candidates separately. Voting a straight party ticket does not include the judicial candidates.

Besides the Innocence Clinic, McCormack is also responsible for the Pediatric Health Advocacy Clinic to represent families with sick children in cases involving their health. She also is responsible for the Domestic Violence Clinic, which helps victims of domestic violence and their families deal with the court system and other problems.

McCormack presents a strong contrast with the Republicans who now control the high court. The GOP-majority rules for corporations and insurance companies -- and against consumers and working people -- more than 80 percent of the time.

McCormack has taught law for 16 years and has been dean of clinical affairs at the University of Michigan Law School since 2003.

McCormack's speech will be followed by a dessert and coffee reception. There is no charge. Call (810) 229-4212 or email for more information.

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Denby Missing in Action -- Again

The sale of synthetic drugs throughout Livingston County and the rest of southeast Michigan is a topic that's been heating up for awhile. Lawmakers are finally taking notice, and even the Livingston Press and Argus notes that they're a little late to pick up on the issue.

In a story published Wednesday (June 6, 2012), the newspaper reported that some Livingston County residents complained our local lawmakers had been ignoring the issue. Rep. Bill Rogers, R-Brighton, said that wasn't true. They were just busy passing the budget. What? They can't multi-task?

Who knows what Livingston County's other state representative, Rep. Cindy Denby, R-Fowlerville, thinks about the issue? The article said: "Denby did not return a call regarding this story."

It's not the first time Denby has failed to return a phone call for comment in a news story. It's sort of a habit of Denby, who two years ago said she focused on constituent service rather than passing legislation. In this case, passing a bill dealing with synthetic drugs that are harming local residents would seem to qualify as constituent service. She could knock off two birds with one stone.

And failing to return a phone call for a story about how legislators are ignoring an issue probably isn't the best foot to put forward.