I’ll be on First Shift this morning to discuss Bill Schuette’s actions so far as Attorney General. Here’s some of the research I have for the topic:
- Schuette is using his office to promote a right wing social agenda.
Saying that religious liberty is under attack, Schuette announced Thursday plans to make Michigan the lead state in filing briefs in support of lawsuits filed by the Becket Fund for Religious Liberty, a group that leans conservative and fights for religious rights (Warikoo, 2/10).
Mark Rienzi, senior counsel at The Becket Fund for Religious Liberty and a law professor at the Catholic University of America, said he thought Schuette was the first state attorney general to participate in Becket’s cases.
- Schuette has stated that police officers who return medical marijuana that has been legally OR illegally seized, may be prosecuted as drug dealers.
In his latest initiative, Schuette has opined that police have a legal obligation not to return pot seized from licensed medical marijuana patients because possession of marijuana is still prohibited under federal law. (Never mind that the U.S. Justice Department, which has bigger fish to fry, especially in Detroit, has made clear its lack of interest in prosecuting patients in Michigan and other states that have authorized medical marijuana.)
In fact, the AG warned in an opinion issued late last week, officers who return illegally confiscated marijuana (in seeming compliance with a provision of the MMA that specifically bars its seizure from medical users licensed by the state) are themselves risking criminal prosecution as drug dealers.
- Schuette is inconsistent in his views on constitutional authority.
In a brief filed with the court, Schuette sides with Livonia, arguing that the Michigan Medical Marijuana Act is preempted by federal law and that local communities should not be forced to sanction criminal activity.
On July 1, the appeals court, in a 2-1 decision, struck down Michigan’s Proposal 2, which bans the consideration of race and gender in college admissions and government hiring. Judges R. Guy Cole Jr. and Martha Craig Daughtrey said it put an unconstitutional burden on minorities who would have to launch their own statewide petition drive to try to undo the law.
Schuette is appealing the ruling because it is “nutty” and because Michigan residents have the right to make laws to protect white people at the state level
- Schuette interferes in elections
Gov. Rick Snyder and Attorney General Bill Schuette filed requests with the Michigan Supreme Court today, asking the court to delay the Nov. 8 recall election targeting state Rep. Paul Scott, R-Grand Blanc.
In documents filed with the court, Snyder and Schuette said the legal tangle surrounding the case – which has been ordered on, off and back on the ballot over the course of the last two months – has left voters confused and in danger of being disenfranchised.
- Schuette uses the AG office to interfere in university matters on a regular basis
In a friend of the court brief filed this week, Schuette asked the U.S. 6th Circuit Court of Appeals to overturn a lower court ruling that EMU was within its rights when it suggested that Julea Ward — a former graduate student who maintains that her Christian beliefs preclude her from ministering to gay and lesbian clients — find another course of study at another school.
- Schuette looking for media, face time
Justices denied a late bid by Schuette to join oral arguments over life sentences without chance of parole for minors in death cases.
The court’s March 5 rejection was quick, 10 days after Schuette’s office sought to participate in arguments that will help decide the fate of 2,500 inmates nationally. One in seven are in Michigan.
Schuette’s office limited its comments to a short statement by spokeswoman Joy Yearout, who said Schuette acted at the request of the defending attorneys general of Alabama and Arkansas.
“We will continue to defend and fight for justice for victims and their families at every opportunity,” she wrote.
- Schuette proposing bad policy to pander to electorate / campaign for higher office
Schuette’s proposal, which his office touted as his “plan to make Michigan safer,” calls for a mandatory 25-year sentence for a violent crime perpetrated by a criminal who has committed three previous felonies.
“For too long, there’s been too much fear, not enough jobs, too much fear, not enough cops,” Schuette said in announcing what he called his VO-4 plan. “Too much fear means seniors can’t walk in the park.”
Longer prison terms for habitual offenders, he suggested, would lead to safer streets – and, presumably, parks
- Schuette campaigned on keeping more people in prison: http://www.billschuette.com/protecting_our_families