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This month’s entry goes directly to Governor Rick Snyder – he who has always professed to being above politics, for an ultimate now-you-see-it-now-you-don’t manipulation that could make a true politician blush. Six years into the gubernatorial game, Snyder played a round of patronage. It seems the Michigan Court of Appeals was slated to lose a judge due to budget constraints, saving taxpayers money – going back to a plan Snyder pushed for in 2012. Appellate judge Donald Owens submitted his resignation in October 2016, effective New Year’s Day 2017. But, voila! Snyder appointed Brock Swartzle, 45, previously chief counsel to the House GOP caucus and with no prior judicial experience, to the seat on the court – nullifying the cost savings. An appellate judge in Michigan earns $153,000, plus staff and court costs. What happened to the plan? The savings was to come when a term ended for an appeals court position but a resignation before a term actually ends allowed the governor to make an appointment. That’s politics for you.


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