Inside and outside of Oakland

Patterson, former driver in America's Thanksgiving Parade?

  James Cram, former driver for Oakland County Executive L. Brooks Patterson who was left a quadriplegic in an August 2012 accident that also injured Patterson, will be in America's Thanksgiving Parade, Patterson's office says.

Politics and strange bedfellows, indeed. Tea party may be Democrats' biggest ally

  Republicans are a divided party between its tea party conservatives and its moderates, and that division looks like it will carry over to the 2014 elections where Democrats hope to keep the Senate and wrest the U.S. House from Republicans.
  There's no indication that the tea party will back down from the GOP moderates it calls RINOs, short for Republicans In Name Only. Tea party conservatives, in fact, anticipate challengers to their candidates next summer from candidates recruited by moderates, and vow to hold their ground.
  That division may give Democrats the edge it wants and needs in next year's congressional elections.
  Consider this message that Tea Party Nation sent out Monday morning from Judson Phillips, a former Tennessee assistant district attorney and founder of that group:

Blame game continues after partial federal government shutdown

  Fresh off the 16-day partial federal government shutdown, Michigan U.S. Rep. Sander Levin, a Royal Oak Democrat, offers his own perspective in the October newsletter of the Oakland County Democratic Party.
  Not surprisingly, Republicans get the blame for it from the long serving congressman, who criticizes the GOP's motivation, facts and bravery.
  Here's what he had to say:

Michigan U.S. Senate and House races gear up early for 2014

  Never at a loss for words, Republican L. Brooks Patterson is weighing in on two of the higher profile races on the 2014 ballot 13 months from now — U.S. Senate and the emerging battle for the 11th Congressional District.
  Both races for next year already have active campaigns working.

McKenzie enters race for Michigan 11th Congressional District

  Bobby McKenzie, a former counterterrorism advisor, has jumped into the 11th Congressional District race as a Democrat.
  McKenzie, 39, announced Thursday that we was running for the seat held by Milford Republican Kerry Bentivolio.
In making his announcement, the Canton resident was critical both of Bentivolio and Bentivolio's Republican primary opponent David Trott.

Conyers to endorse Benny Napoleon for Detroit mayor tomorrow

U.S. Rep. John Conyers, a Detroit Democrat, has announced he'll endorse Benny Napoleon for mayor of Detroit tomorrow. His office sent out the following:

Peters donates federal shutdown money to local nonprofits

  Two charities are the beneficiaries of the two-week partial federal government shutdown that ended Oct. 17.
  U.S. Rep. Gary Peters, a Bloomfield Township Democrat, is donating his $5,000 take-home pay during the two weeks to charities in Detroit and Pontiac.

Voters may punish members of Congress who supported shutdown

U.S. Rep. Gary Peters
  The 16 days of a partial government shutdown has done nothing for the popularity of Congress.
  But individual members who opposed the shutdown are getting a boost in some political polls, while those who supported it aren't.
  A poll released Wednesday as Congress teetered on the edge of ending the shutdown showed U.S. Rep. Gary Peters, a Bloomfield Township Democrat, ahead of Republican Terri Lynn Land in the race for U.S. Senate next year.

Schauer criticizes Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder on economy in advance of 2014 election

 Mark Schauer says the 2014 election will bring wholesale changes to Michigan's political makeup.
Mark Schauer
  The 52-year-old former one-term congressman hopes he'll be part of the change.
  Schauer, from Battle Creek, wants to unseat first-term incumbent Republican Gov. Rick Snyder next year, criticizing the Snyder policies he says have depressed wages, cut revenue sharing and education, taxed individual pensions, and rewarded the state's largest corporations.

Public anger may force Congress to reach a budget/debt deal the Dems and GOP aren't inclined to make

  Will Congress reach at least a short-term deal on the budget and borrowing power in time to end a partial government shutdown and avoid a financial default?
  The odds are that they will, if for no other reason than their collective popularity can't get much lower and the election cycle for next year is starting to gear up.

Land claims $2 million fundraising for Michigan U.S. Senate bid

  Republican Terri Lynn Land is reporting $2 million in receipts in her bid to replace retiring U.S. Sen. Carl Levin in 2014.