OT: MSU Board of Trustees

Submitted by Boner Stabone on November 5th, 2018 at 9:24 AM

I know.....the no politics on here, but with everyone who is on the ballot for MSU B.o.T. having MSU ties and  contining the cover up for Mork and Izzo, I am writing in Devin Bush and Chase Winovich on my ballot for tomorrow to be the next trustees for MSU.  They need some outsiders for their Board and these two men would serve well.  Are there any other candidates that would be worthy of a write in vote?



November 5th, 2018 at 9:30 AM ^

I am for the candidates that I think will fight for changing the culture. Two have endorsed more transparency and support the Reclaim MSU pledge. I want that cesspool cleaned up and Engler and the cronyism gone that permeates MSU. 

Before voting check out the candidates.


November 5th, 2018 at 9:40 AM ^

can you imagine the first BoT meeting that Brian would attend as a member?  

BC: i want to make a motion, its long overdue

HH (head honcho, meeting director): mr cook, welcome to the BoT, but its not the time for that

BC:  the heck it isn't!  this motion is about 20 yrs overdue.

HH:  what are you talking about?  what motion?  and we observe roberts rules of order here, so wait your turn.

BC:  yeah, well whatever roberts rules are, you don't apparently observe society's rules, you guys are rapists and steroid junkies.  i make a motion we give ourselves the death penalty for football and basketball, and maybe some other stuff too.  and i make a motion we apologize like actual, real human beings and not like jaba-the-engler.   

(uproar in crowd.  HH pounds gavel, screaming, order!  order!)

BC:  and i'm just getting started! you get 8 more years of me!!  go blue!! 


November 5th, 2018 at 9:39 AM ^

Serious answer: Kelly Tebay and Brianna Scott. They are two amazing women who graduated from MSU. I would encourage you and everyone to help clean up the garbage up there by voting for these two.




November 5th, 2018 at 9:54 AM ^

People can vote for whomever they want, but now is not the time (if it ever is) to throw away votes on non-serious write-ins.

For example, in a recent interview "Kelly says she disappointed with how the current board has handled recent situations, including the Larry Nassar case and the hiring of interim university president John Engler."

So do a bit of research, and vote accordingly. 


November 5th, 2018 at 11:24 AM ^


So those are the only two?

No one else has expressed how they will address the current climate there?

They will get my votes as that seriously has to stop and Engler as to go back into a hole somewhere.

Just hope it's not lip service and they are serious about it.



November 5th, 2018 at 9:47 AM ^

if you are serious about voting them out do not do a write in.  vote directly against them with the person on the ticket.  writing in doesn't do anything but take away votes from the person who could replace them


November 5th, 2018 at 9:54 AM ^

Don't the BOT people run against other people that have a shot at winning? Why not vote for those guys instead of a write-in with no chance?

Bando Calrissian

November 5th, 2018 at 10:01 AM ^

Did you actually look at the websites for the candidates? I did when I was preparing my ballot (I vote absentee). At least two of them are very up front about accountability for the Nassar scandal and putting the prevention of sexual harassment and assault at the center of the university's priorities.

Just because someone went to MSU doesn't mean they can't be working to change the system. Writing in pointless candidates is just that: Pointless. Do your homework and think critically.

Section 1.8

November 5th, 2018 at 10:24 AM ^

I think that what Bando is trying to say, is "Don't hold it against the Democrats, that they have degrees from MSU.  And don't write in pointless names like 'Boner Staboner.'  Because that won't help the Democrats win."


Seriously, folks.  This is going to be a really interesting election for all of the university boards in Michigan.  And here's why.  Now that we have gotten rid of straight-ticket voting, we will see if the Democrats' outsize influence on university boards will be diminished.  This is because for decades, with straight-ticket voting, Democrats in Michigan's down-ballot races (and university board membership is one of the least-known offices on your ballot, right?) got a boost of thousands and thousands of votes by virtue of the fact that in Democrat-dominated Detroit and Wayne County, where union leaders and churches and community activists were really active in not just getting people to vote, but also to get them to vote a "straight Democratic ticket," voters who knew nothing about the memberships of university boards effectively cast automatic votes for the Democrats for university boards, when those names would be largely unknown to voters.  That is why Michigan's doing away with straight-ticket voting was so bitterly partisan, and so hotly contested that the battle moved from legislation, to referenda, back to legislation, and then to the federal courts. Indeed, one of the pieces of evidence that Democrats (and/or their surrogates) brought to the federal court litigation was the fact that in the City of Detroit, a huge number of voters cast a straight-ticket ballot.  I think that now, the Republicans' reasonable expectation is that in a place like Detroit, many thousands of voters will vote for the top-of-ticket offices that they know, and will leave blank the lower-level offices where they don't recognize any names.


Section 1.8

November 5th, 2018 at 10:50 AM ^


I actually didn't realize it when I posted my comment just a little while ago, because I hadn't read Seth's posting of the MGoPodcast interviews with the (R) and (D) U-M Regent candidates.

But now that I have seen that, I note that just like me, Seth called attention to the fact that the university board elections should be watched closely now that Michigan has done away with straight-ticket voting.

Hahaha!  I guess the message depends on who is the messenger, eh?



November 5th, 2018 at 11:42 AM ^

I don't live in Michigan any more and found his post extremely interesting. 


When I was in high school one of my teachers basically said straight party voting was good only for idiots who don't care what happens. He laughed that you could stumble in blind drunk and as long as you could find the right lever (it's been a while) you could get everyone you wanted with one pull. And he was right. Straight party voting is a bad idea and you should feel bad if you try to enforce it on people who don't want it. My opinion is you should feel bad if you even support it.

Section 1.8

November 5th, 2018 at 11:58 AM ^

Thank you very much.

Straight-party voting is almost non-existent now in the 50 states.  Michigan and North Carolina have been engaged in major battles to do away with it.  It leaves (I think) Texas and West Virginia as the only states that still have it.

A couple of years ago, Kansas Secretary of State (now running for Governor) Kris Kobach tried to get legislation passed to introduce straight-ticket voting in that state.  Obviously, going against the larger national trend to do away with it.  And Kobach's critics were unsurprisingly strident in their protests, saying that straight-ticket was a lazy option, and was intended to skew down-ballot races via a larger partisan majority in the area.  That it was a partisan power grab, essentially.  The exact same arguments that were being advanced in the Michigan federal court litigation (adding the "racist" and "long lines at polling places" arguments).



November 5th, 2018 at 12:45 PM ^

States’ Rights. If the voters of a state want to have straight party voting, cool.

But I do find the push against straight party voting strange, in that it is just limiting the voter’s options. If someone feels that no extra information is needed than the candidate’s party affiliation, why remove that option? Everyone else can proceed as we currently do.

Would you be in favor of removing party affiliation from the ballot altogether? That would seem reasonable according to your rationale above — a truly informed electorate is better than an uninformed one. Informed voters would know which candidate belongs to which party. It would force people to pay attention more than they currently do. Yet, I don’t think that’s a good idea? You?


November 5th, 2018 at 1:19 PM ^

Good grief.  The long lines are a legit concern if you actually care about voter participation.  The 'lazy option' criticisms are just stupid.  The entire country depends on lazy voters (voting based on slogans or not bothering to vote) and lazy consumers (convenience stores, microwaves, fast food, online shopping, pet-related services) 

Eliminating the straight party option did not make the system somehow more virtuous, it just gave us another thing to fight about. 


November 5th, 2018 at 3:14 PM ^

Alabama, Indiana, Kentucky, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Texas, and Utah still have straight ticket voting.

I’m not sure where North Carolina has come down on it — I believe they’ve done away with it legislatively, but I think there’s a fight there as well.

Perhaps interestingly, each of those states is controlled by the same political party, and polls have demonstrated that party line voting helps that party in those particular states. It looks like the party leadership in those states does not care enough about its citizens to assure that the citizens remain well-informed. 


November 6th, 2018 at 4:14 PM ^

Right, because if you take away the combo numbers at McDonalds, then everyone would know exactly what is on the menu and they'd make better choices.  You can't inform people by taking away an option.  You could increase access to information, and you could offset longer lines by offering more polling stations and resources and more ways to vote.  The people who want to ban straight party voting don't ever propose any of that, nor do those people ever demand more accurate information from the current elected officials or candidates or campaigns.  That's because they don't really want more informed voters, they just want more emotional voters than the other side gets, and they think they can achieve that by removing the straight-party option. 

Section 1.8

November 5th, 2018 at 1:15 PM ^

What you say is of course technically true.  In practice, it allows organized partisans to bump up vote totals in down-ballot races.  I submit that the only reason that Mike Behm is a Regent is because he was the beneficiary of straight-ticket votes for Democrats.  Behm beat Ron Weiser in 2014 by less than 5,000 votes, in a statewide election of about 5.5 million votes.  And in Detroit and Wayne County that year, the totals on Straight Ticket votes cast was 224,806 Democratic straight ticket votes, to 71,846 Republican straight-ticket votes.

Look; under the state constitution and even under the Elections Clause of Article I of the U.S. Constitution, the state legislature has the right and the power to establish the "manner" of conducting elections.

And in Michigan, this is how the majority of the legislature decided to go.

Section 1.8

November 5th, 2018 at 4:09 PM ^

There is a phenomenon known as "roll off" in election science.  It's not complicated; it is the phenomenon in which voters cast votes for well-recognized races at the top of the ballot, but do not cast votes for lesser-known races at the bottom of the ballot.  Roll off, the political scientists tell us, is even more pronounced among voters with less education.

But no one needs to worry about roll off when you have straight-ticket voting.  If you have a social structure in which you can enforce a strong ethic of straight-party voting, your side will have a very large advantage in the down-ballot races that are routinely subject to roll off.

49% of voters in Michigan used straight-party voting in 2014, but I could not find the partisan breakdown.  I would really like to know. I am guessing that it is at least 65-35 Democratic.

But however you slice and dice the numbers, the absolute, inescapable and irrefutable conclusion is that with straight-ticket voting in Michigan, Democrats in down-ballot races get a bump of many thousands of votes, all other things being equal.  In Detroit, in the low-turnout 2014 midterm, just 31% of eligible voters turned out.  About 167,000 total voters.  Of those, 122,000 cast "straight ticket" votes, and of those, an eye-popping 97.35% were for the Democratic Party via a straight-party vote.  So of those votes, there would have been zero roll off.

Amazing, isn't it?




November 5th, 2018 at 7:25 PM ^

While I never vote a straight ticket, I have no issue with it being there simply from a logistic standpoint. There are many voters who never (and, I would say irrationally) want to vote for someone in the other tribe. It slows down the voting process to make everyone fill every bubble. Long lines limit access and are a form of voter suppression.

Yes, I want more informed voters but getting rid of the straight ticket doesn't help much or at all. Now, instead, how about non-partisan ballots?


November 6th, 2018 at 3:59 PM ^

No, it's not amazing, it's not rocket science, and you aren't exposing some grand conspiracy with your weird crusade here.  Straight party is just an option that makes voting easier.  All you are saying is that you don't like it when Democrats get a bump from a certain voting option, and instead of trying to win straight-party voting, you just want that option to be taken away from everyone.  There's no corresponding increase in access to polling stations or booths or absentee voting or anything else that would offset the longer lines, and no increase in access to the information that you say people should have.  It's just a cynical power play that reduces the options available to voters, and dollars to donuts that it was written by some branch of the SPN and pushed through the legislatures through that back door.  


November 5th, 2018 at 2:16 PM ^

The MI state legislature has thrice done away with party-line voting. Twice, statewide referenda overruled the statutes, and it’s on the ballot again.

You wouldn’t strike me as the type to be against this kind of direct popular sovereignty with respect to other issues. The voters of Michigan have consistently been in favor of the party-line voting option.

Mark McBoneski

November 5th, 2018 at 11:17 AM ^

I think what Bando is trying to say is "Don't hold it against the candidates, that they have degrees from MSU. Some of them want to change the system." Nowhere does he imply that one party is better than the other. In fact, party matters a lot less on regent/trustee races than others. What matters more is do the candidates support change? Do they support Engler's obstruction?