WHAT MONEY CAN’T BUY


Kevin Rinke

Back in August, we referenced the writings of Bill Ballenger, former state lawmaker and Michigan dean of political newsletters, when he cryptically noted “personal issues” could gum up the works for then-rumored 2022 GOP gubernatorial candidate Kevin Rinke of Bloomfield Township. Yep, he has finally announced and appears to be making good on his claim that he is willing to spend $10 million of his own wealth to defeat Gretchen Whitmer, as evidenced by a November nearly quarter million-dollar commitment for digital and broadcast ads to make an announcement splash. But the glow of that introduction faded just a bit when past lawsuits were dredged up (Detroit News and West Michigan Politics blog) from his time as part of management and ownership of the Rinke Automotive Group. The lawsuits, two of which were settled out of court (we assume for money), alleged a toxic work environment, rife with “relentless” racial slurs and sexual harassment attributed to Rinke, not to mention a supposed quote that puts him in the class where the outdated but still prevailing belief is that women belong in the kitchen. Have voters heard it all? Fat chance. “There’s more to come,” said one bigwig familiar with sentiments circulating in the state Republican party which we hear is divided on the candidate.

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