Michigan House Republicans
Rep. VanderWall: Governor claims to save taxpayers money while touting cost-raising policies
RELEASE|January 25, 2024

State Rep. Curt VanderWall (R-Ludington) issued the following statement in response to Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s 2024 State of the State Address on Wednesday:

“Though the governor obscurely veiled her overtly partisan speech with references to 80’s songs, it was clear that she has no direction for the State. Despite claiming her administration was working to lower costs for Michiganders, she touted cost-raising policies as ‘wins.’ Her economic development plan has been more of a “handout of the day” approach than an actual coordinated effort to bring Michigan’s national standing up from 39th in personal incomes and 49th in population growth.

“She also touted her new laws that are far from legislative wins, like an unnecessary bill that codified Obamacare into Michigan law though it was already enforced under federal law.

“I was, however, pleased to hear the governor mention childcare, acknowledging a huge problem Michiganders face, though I am concerned by her proposed solution. By proposing universal pre-K, she is essentially condemning the in-home childcare industry. Due to burdensome government regulations and ratio requirements, in-home childcare providers can’t stay in business if they only see children up to age 3. Putting all four-year-olds in the state system actually makes the problem worse.

“She also failed to mention our failing health care system. While bringing up a plan to give tax breaks to caregivers, she completely ignored Michigan’s concerning shortage of healthcare professionals. Unpaid family caregivers are great, but our seniors need doctors and nurses too.

“Finally, I was encouraged to hear her discuss workforce housing. But she plans to build just 10,000 homes with taxpayer dollars costing us a staggering $1.4 billion. The true scope of the need is more like 190,000 homes, and her existing policies will make reaching this goal immensely harder. Due to prevailing wage laws, the cost of building homes at mandatory union rates will be more expensive.

“I came to Lansing to work for my district, not pass purposeless bills and make performative speeches. It’s clear that the best song reference for her speech would have been Fleetwood Mac’s ‘Little Lies.’”


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