Back in September, James Craig attempted to make a big deal out of “joining” a Republican gubernatorial primary despite being the open favorite of MIGOP insiders since May. The hard reboot still remains the “messiest gubernatorial campaign announcement event” in Michigan election history.
In the lead-up to the reboot, Craig’s campaign was defined by a refusal to answer basic questions, no spelled-out solutions for Michigan’s biggest issues (like infrastructure, which he said wasn’t his priority), a virtually non-existent campaign schedule, and “scripted, canned talking points” that could only be heard during frequent appearances on national cable shows with anchors that would only ask softball questions.
Five months on, those features have changed little, and explains why Craig still “hasn’t moved out of first gear” and his fundraising “fell off a cliff” compared to his previous quarter, with “donations of $200 or less decreas[ing] 300% from July to October 2021.”
Michigan working families have still only seen occasional glimpses of the disastrous and extreme agenda he’s running to install that both “lack[s] specific policy” solutions and completely runs counter to improving their well-being.
At one of his few events, Craig advocated for cutting funding for underperforming public schools, saying that the public education death spiral that would come from altering Michigan’s constitution to funnel taxpayer resources to private schools would somehow spur school districts to improve, arguing that when “you incentivize progress, magical things begin to happen.”
Even as a week-long blockade of Ambassador Bridge brought Michigan’s auto industry to a halt, robbed auto workers of up to $51 million in lost wages, and blocked $356 million of goods daily, Craig positioned himself against Michican’s economy, throwing his support behind the blockade and rooting for it to continue.
And on the matter of choice, he endorsed stripping abortion rights from rape victims, landing him squarely the wrong side of this critical issue for Michigan women and families. Previously, he pledged to employ whatever means necessary to ensure that a severely restrictive Michigan law from 1931, that criminalizes abortion and makes reproductive health care providers felons, stays in place should Roe v. Wade get struck down.
MDP spokesperson Rodericka Applewhaite issued the following statement:
“Five months on since his disaster of a reboot on Belle Isle that ended up foreshadowing the rest of his year, Michiganders are still just as in the dark on what James proactively plans to do to keep them first. The only thing he’s managed to show after ten months of being propped up by insiders is his commitment to his extreme crusade to force pregnancy on rape victims and gut public education while also cheering on commerce blockade that robbed working families of hard-earned wages. It only makes sense that Craig continues to gain traction in this crowded and messy primary.”