McMillin, VanRaaphorst: Candidate Questionnaire Form

This race has been highly emotionally charged, my last post was turned into a bashing and personal attacks, very childish and immature. How about an adult conversation?


This race in our local community for Michigan State Representative has been highly emotionally charged.  My last post was an attempt to state what each candidate had posted on their website and comments from an interview in a local paper.  I asked people to read this information and post who and why they choose their candidate in a positive message.  At the end of the post I stated my opinion based on the information I had.


Well, that did not seem to go as planned.  It turned into a negative attack on one candidate with no positive reasons to vote for the other.  Then it expanded into many other subjects with the spin doctors and targeted tag lines to cause confusion to push hidden agendas.  I thought it would be simple; state your opinion without bashing the other candidate, I was wrong.


Then I decided to create this Candidate Questionnaire Form and ask both candidates to fill it out to give us a better vision of their background, vision and plan for the State of Michigan.  I appreciated both candidates trust and information in filling out the form so I can post it on the Patch.  We also involved Kristin Bull in the process to ensure it is a fair process and the information submitted to me was accurately posted.  I also gave both candidates the opportunity to read both forms prior to the posting to ensure they agreed my document is accurate and see the other candidates form.


Now all that is done and all parties; Tom, Joanna and Kristin agree these documents are accurate and what they submitted to me.


The Challenge:


"If you cannot say something nice, don't say it!" 


Read both forms, make a personal assessment of each candidate and comment on why you are choosing your candidate in a POSITIVE way without bashing the other.  Let us all hear the various POSITIVE reasons why we are choosing one candidate.  I believe this will help the person with an open mind make a rational choice.


I also ask the NEGATIVE comments to not be posted.  I guess I am the optimist and hope people will take this serious and not push their hidden agendas.  I am not stupid, I understand this will happen, so let us all just ignore these comments and they will get the message that they are just meaningless noise.


Based on this information, who and why would you choose one candidate?

This post is contributed by a community member. The views expressed in this blog are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Patch Media Corporation. Everyone is welcome to submit a post to Patch. If you'd like to post a blog, go here to get started.

doug November 05, 2012 at 01:17 PM
Linda: I respect your right to support your candidate. You articulate the reasons why in a very positive fashion. I have to take exception to one comment. JoAnne represents a set of ideas and supporters (MEA) that don't represent People of all parties. I consider myself a right leaning independent. In no way does Tom represent my social views. That said, Joanne doesn't represent my fiscal views. That is OK. I am voting very reluctantly for Tom, because I believe the Republicam majority in the House has the best chance of bringing the Michigan economy. I can't afford to vote for Joanne with the voting so close for that majority. A quick comment on names. Ideas presented on these posts should stand on their own merit. Having someone's full name offers no additional context unless the writer is well known, which would offer context. W
Brooke November 05, 2012 at 01:50 PM
I am voting for Joanna Vanraaphorst. I met her this summer. My child is special needs and I think she is the candidate that will stand up for families like mine. No offense to the McMillin supporters but he seems to be more about social issues that provoke people.
Char Kruse November 05, 2012 at 03:33 PM
Tom Lost my vote way last summer with all his Robo calls, even after 3 emails and 2 phone calls asking for them to stop they keep coming!
Daryl Patrishkoff November 05, 2012 at 04:00 PM
Char, Please respect the posting, read the idea behind this. It is not a bashing, we are asking for people to give POSITIVE comments only on why they are supporting a particular candidate without bashing the other. Read the info they provided and give us your POSITIVE thoughts, not a bashing. Thanks,
Chris Doan November 05, 2012 at 04:15 PM
I'm voting for Joanna. She's committed to doing the right thing for her constituents and also recognizes the value of our children's education. By the way, I don't think any comments here qualify as "bashing." Many of us don't agree with McMillin's record or positions. Saying so is not being negative, just stating our beliefs. Stop being so sensitive when we don't agree with your candidate.
Rochester Hills Mom November 05, 2012 at 04:43 PM
Joanna VanRaaphorst will be getting my vote. Her views align with my concerns for the community she would represent as well as her MODERATE position on many of the issues. Divisiveness does not lead to consensus and consensus is what's needed at the State level.
Joshua Raymond November 05, 2012 at 05:05 PM
Chris, I think the point is to tell people specific reasons to vote for your candidate, not just reasons to vote against the other person. I would be interested in hearing more detail about the two pro- points you made for her. I believe the same about McMillin, but probably for very different reasons when you look at the details. I believe McMillin mostly represents the views of the majority of our district socially and economically. (There are some where I don't believe he does.) I believe his pro-business philosophy will help Michigan come back by bringing more jobs to the state, which is desperately needed. I am strongly pro-life and I am glad that he is too. I believe his transparency-in-government bills are important to be educated citizens. I strongly support Rochester Community Schools, but I don't believe traditional public schools meet the needs of all students. I believe the parents that want to send their children to charter schools and cyber schools are taxpayers too and should not be penalized financially if they seek something different for their children. There are problems with every school system and the correct answer is to address the problems instead of removing the education option. I believe McMillin is closer to my view on this. Perhaps you could provide details on these two issues as to why you support Ms. VanRaaphorst. She deserves to have supporters who tell of her good traits.
patricia ozybko November 05, 2012 at 05:09 PM
I so wish more people would have attended the debate at city hall several weeks ago because they'd have made a decision right then and there, Joanna VanRaaphorst is the BEST CANDIDATE for this position. What a woman! I'm so happy to call her my friend.
June Hopaluk November 05, 2012 at 05:19 PM
Joanna is the best choice for State Representative. She is and always has been actively involved in our community. She didn't just get involved when she decided to run for political office. Her children attended Rochester Community Schools. She knows our community and what is important to our families.
Dan Welch November 05, 2012 at 05:27 PM
I'm voting for Joanna Vanraaphorst. I do not believe the majority of the the people in this community agree with Tom McMillin's social views. I think people are more like Joanna. In a piece Tom sent out to the district he refers to his facebook account. I checked it out. His friends include people like Peter Labarbera of Americans for Truth about Homosexuality. This is a hate group. These are facts, Daryl. I don't know many people in this community who run with hate groups. Tom does. Joanna has worked in small business, large corporations and has spear headed major philanthropic efforts in this area. Easy choice for me. Joanna Vanraaphorst has my vote.
Jon Awbrey November 05, 2012 at 06:10 PM
Since I can't imagine many people will be changing their minds between today and tomorrow, I find my own mind turning toward the day after tomorrow and the challenges ahead for the future of Michigan and the Nation. Whatever mix of executives, judges, and legislators we elect to each branch and level of government, they will all be charged to represent the People's Will in making one critical choice — the choice between democratic government and corporate government. That is a choice that affects every other — from education, the environment, equality of opportunity and protection under the law, to public safety, public service, and whether we even continue to have a meaningful public sector in the future. As far as education goes, it is clear that all of us and all of our elected officials need to become better informed about the consequences of the paths we choose — the very viability of our democracy is at stake. The necessary conversation is not a new one, but it seems necessary to renew it from time to time, and this is certainly one of those times. One of the places the needed conversation is occurring with rather more light than heat these days would have to be on the following site. • http://dianeravitch.net/ I recommend it to you all. If we don't become better educated about education, I fear we are doomed.
Bill Monroe November 05, 2012 at 06:13 PM
Well, isn't this a who's who of Rochester Democrats. Folks who run fundraisers for JV and the local Democrat club. I'm glad the vocal minority is coming out in full force, like the 12 folks who always show up at Tom McMillin's office hours to scream about something. Be careful when you get to the polls tomorrow. You'll be accosted by these same dozen folks while you head into the polls to cast your secret ballot and re-elect Tom McMillin. Speaking of divisive, it seems the local Democrats are the ones being divisive. Tom doesn't talk about gays or these fake "divisive" issues until asked by Bruce Fealk or his merry band of agitators. I like how JV quotes County Exec Patterson on her literature against Tom McMillin. But why does Brooks Patterson support McMillin over JV? It's funny reading some of the quotes about ol' JV. She knows what's best for business. She knows what's best for our schools. She knows what's best for parents in our district, and charter schools aren't one of them. Euripides said "One can judge a man by the company he keeps." If JV is such a business maven, how come she hasn't been endorsed by NFIB or any chambers of commerce? If JV is able to cross the aisle and work with both sides, how come she hasn't been endorsed by any conservative groups? I think the reality of JV being a moderate is as fake as the controversy over Tom McMillin.
Daryl Patrishkoff November 05, 2012 at 06:30 PM
Dan, How about a recommendation on your candidate without bashing the other? That is the idea of this posting, POSITIVE comment without the attacks and spin. Did you actually read both Candidate Questionnaire forms? Did you analyze them and make a decision based on facts? Take the attacks out of it, it is meaningless noise and sheep love to follow the spin doctors. Sheep do not look at the facts and data they just follow, an informed voter is not a sheep.
Daryl Patrishkoff November 05, 2012 at 06:40 PM
Bill, Tell us in a POSITIVE way why you support McMillin, that is the idea of this posting. Both sides throw lots of mud, it does not help the conversation and becomes meaningless noise.
Carol November 05, 2012 at 06:47 PM
"One can judge a man by the company he keeps." - Tom McMillin is financed by Matty Moroun and backed by hate group leaders like Gary Glenn. McMillinWatch.com
Beth Kudla November 05, 2012 at 07:19 PM
I have already voted for Joanna. I am not a Republican or a Democrat but, an independent who truly looks at the background and caliber of the candidate. Who has shown up, has Rochester best interests at heart and is willing to work together to get things done. Joanna wins hands down.
Bill Monroe November 05, 2012 at 07:28 PM
Yep, looks like $1000 from Moroun and Moroun's wife. I'm not too worried. If we're going to compare special interest money, let's look at JV's campaign finances: Pre-General: http://bit.ly/Xejelw Pre-Primary: http://bit.ly/WriMBh Late Contribution: http://miboecfr.nictusa.com/cfr/idr/365059.html $5000 from the MEA Political Action Council? So... the MEA owns JV five times as much as Moroun owns McMillin? Or $2000 from the Carpenters' Union? $1000 from the UAW? How about the $500 from DTE? Is JV now committed to putting Smart meters on everyone's homes because she's bought and paid for? Or $500 from Domenic Moceri? How does a big developer like Moceri compare to Moroun? Or $500 from the Rochester Democrat club? Is she going to be more dedicated to the Democrat club than to the constituents? These accusations cut both ways, my friend.
doug November 05, 2012 at 07:30 PM
I have a sincere question for moderates and republicans in this district. Are you willing to risk the Republican majority in the House to vote for a more inviting democrat over an objectionable republican? It is a tough one. On the one hand, the local decision seems easy. However that could mean a political agenda in Lansing more along the lines of what Virg was offering when he ran against Snyder. Have you considered that possibility?
David Artenault November 05, 2012 at 07:57 PM
There are bad elected officials in each party. I'm a moderate and I don't think voting against McMillin is going to change any progress (unemployment actually rose) in this state. Companies and people who migrate to states look at a wide variety of issues, many of which McMillin can't grasp. Another 2 years of McMilin gives him an opportunity to fill up his coffers for a state senate run. I'm not voting for him.
Chris Doan November 05, 2012 at 10:33 PM
I posted earlier my positive decision to vote for Joanna. I met her and talked to her about her positions. I found that I agree with her on just about every issue. She is a moderate like I am. Later, I came home and looked at my mail. There was an 8 x 10 postcard from Taxpayers for McMillan, CPA that said she had a "RADICAL liberal agenda" (their capital letters). She is not a "radical" by any definition. So much for "positive" campaigning. Joanna is our best choice. She has not resorted to wild exaggerations and name calling, which is a reflection of her good character. Character counts!
Lisa Hook November 06, 2012 at 12:08 AM
JoAnna is an incredible individual with a rare talent for helping others. She is.a capable, intelligent, compassionate, level-headed, steadfast leader who will never give up without seeing to it justice is served. As a community servant, former teacher, concerned citizen and caring neighbor to all, there is no other candidate I'd rather see represent the State of Michigan in these uncertain times. Both parties have done a fine job representing themselves and their ideas. My faith is with JoAnna.
Beth Kudla November 06, 2012 at 02:01 AM
No comment at all about the caliber of the person you are sending to defend our communities interests? Shame on you!
Scot Beaton November 06, 2012 at 02:42 AM
Daryl Patrishkoff... gets his underwear in a bunch every time I use my own words -- likes to call me the town fool when we don't draw the same conclusion. So to appease Daryl and all his sensitives... I'll cut and paste other quotes where I share the similar opinion. L. Brooks Patterson supports the inclusion of sexual orientation in state hate crime laws. "We don't kill young gay guys just because they're gay. Maybe McMillin's brand of Christianity accepts that. Mine does not," Patterson was quoted as saying in the Oakland Press L. Brooks Patterson said McMillin hailed from the "Taliban wing of the Party," after McMillin used robocalls against the Oakland County executive that said he embraced the homosexual agenda. Patterson also said that McMillin wasn't a member of the Christian Coalition because, in fact, he embarrasses the Christian Coalition. Oakland Press "Republicans did less mischief at their convention, mainly because all the top spots were already determined. They get the award, however, for picking the absolutely worst candidate for any job. That would be Tom McMillan, the former Auburn Hills mayor who became famous for his hatred of gay people. He was so over-the-top that L. Brooks Patterson called him a member of the Taliban, and once famously gave him a kiss to make fun of his obsession." Jack Lessonberry
Scot Beaton November 06, 2012 at 02:43 AM
Michigan Politician: Being Gay Is a Choice -- "Michigan state representative Tom McMillin says that being gay is a choice for those "who have come out the lifestyle." McMillin, a Republican who previously compared being gay to smoking cigarettes, was confronted as a recent town hall meeting by gay constituent Bruce Fealk. When Fealk asked whether he still believed being gay is a choice, McMillin responded by saying, "Well, I think that the thousands of people that have been in that lifestyle and come out would say that it was their choice when they were in and came out of the lifestyle." Neal Broverman "Republican state Representative Tom McMillin has proposed a law that would forbid civil rights protections that are more expansive than Michigan’s civil rights law. The measure would apply to local governments, school districts and state agencies. Its aim is to block ordinances that offer legal protection against discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender identity. Right now at least 18 Michigan communities have such laws on the books." http://www.anonymoses.dailykos.com/story/2011/10/10/1025007/-New-Mich-GOP-law-will-override-local-laws-roll-back-LGBT-protections-the-lie-of-Small-Government
Scot Beaton November 06, 2012 at 02:43 AM
Tom McMillin mailed a piece of campaign literature to my house his words. "Left Wing Social Groups: NOW & Planned Parenthood Tom NO Joanna YES -- MI Equality (Leading Gay Adoption Advocates) Tom NO Joanna YES -- Sierra Club Tom NO Joanna YES -- Can we really afford to send a radical, untested liberal like Joanna to represent us in Lansing?" -- Tom McMillin My big question regarding this political race... who's the radical, looks like to me Joanna supports basic human rights issues -- Tom McMillin represents some kind of authoritarian type rule. Daryl Patrishkoff... please explain to Patch readers when you click on the big document at the top of your post all you get is a Tom McMillin questionnaire and you have to dig and go to the bottom to find Joanna VanRaaphorst questionnaire?
Timothy Maurer November 06, 2012 at 03:20 AM
Tom NO Joanna YES -- MI Equality (Leading Gay Adoption Advocates) Tom NO Joanna YES -- I'm voting for Joanna VanRaaphorst because she believes that children are better off in a home with 2 people who love them than in the system.
Bill Monroe November 06, 2012 at 03:52 AM
Pretty cool quotes from Brooks Patterson. So how come he's not endorsing JV? You'd think, for as often as JV brings up Patterson's quotes that she'd be voting for him. Instead, she's supporting the socialist running against Patterson. It's only a political opportunity. How quickly you want to forget about Anne Heche. She makes a big deal about being gay, gets into a monogamous relationship with Ellen Degeneres, breaks up with her - and suddenly she's straight and gets married. Or maybe she's bisexual. Who knows. For some being gay is a choice. We could find other examples like Anne Heche. Nothing McMillen said was wrong, but it provides a political opportunity and the vocal minority won't miss an opportunity to pounce. I think it's a mistake targeting her campaign this way. It's a fake issue that didn't need a champion. JV tried to make a big deal about the Gay Rights Ordinance to the CIty Council and failed because nobody's civil rights are being impacted. In all of these articles that you post links to, nobody has been discriminated against by Tom McMillin. We'll see for sure, one way or another, in 24 hours.
N. C. November 06, 2012 at 07:48 AM
I am an INDEPENDENT voter. Voted for McMillin in his last run, but because of votes he cast and comments he makes, I was open for a better option. Joanna Vanraaphorst will get my vote this election. Met Joanna at a coffee hosted by neighbors, whose integrity and character I truly respect. Any candidate this couple chooses to support has, in essence, already been ethically vetted. I really wanted to meet the candidate they felt so strongly about. After listening to Joanna and watching her interact with people, I came away knowing that she is a VERY POSITIVE, ENERGETIC, HARD-WORKING person who really CARES and LISTENS to her future constituents. Vanraaphorst’s ENTHUSIASM and DETERMINATION are off the charts. Voting for Joanna is something I am looking forward to doing! I hope she wins!
Cheryl November 06, 2012 at 02:39 PM
Since I know Joanna, her values, her energy and her passion, my support was an absolute. Hearing so many former McMillan supporters dedicate their vote to her is a clear indicator that her values ring truer to members of this community than those of her opponent. For the few who indicated that they would vote with her opponent for the sole purpose of aligning with a party, I hope they have considered the local consequences. Local government has the most impact on commmunities, so I expect Rochester will vote VanRaaphorst.
Char Kruse November 06, 2012 at 09:01 PM
excuse me I will then say Joanna will get my vote because she didn't disturb me and wake up my napping granson with 25 robo calls! I did not think what I wrote was " bashing "anyone


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