Governor Gretchen Whitmer and other Great Lakes Governors are looking to catch the eye of presidential candidates on the issue of Great Lakes commerce, food and tourism.
Today in Glen Arbor she pushed her 2020 Great Lakes Presidential Agenda, a test for how seriously the candidates take Michigan and the region.
“It defines us literally with our borders but also our psyche,” says Gov. Whitmer, “That is the Great Lakes.”
Michigan is nothing without the Great Lakes. Gov. Whitmer knows the state needs federal assistance to keep the lakes healthy. So she spearheaded a six point agenda for presidential candidates, addressing algae blooms, invasive species, drinking water contamination and funding for the Soo Locks, infrastructure, and the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative.
“Water is not partisan, water is a fundamental human necessity,” says Gov. Whitmer.
“It’s pretty simple, Michigan knows it is an attractive state to look at but it also knows it’s attractive to presidential candidates that want to win the White House. So Gov. Whitmer made it simple, if you’re willing to promise to support and protect the Great Lakes, you’re one step closer to getting the support of the Great Lakes State.
“Any candidate that comes into Michigan, I’m going to ask them if they have signed on to the Great Lakes Agenda before we roll out the red carpet officially here in our state,” says Gov. Whitmer.
The Great Lakes were missing from last week’s Democratic Debates in Detroit but the governor doesn’t expect that to continue.
“As we get closer to the presidential election,” says Gov. Whitmer, “We are going to be talking about the Great Lakes, we are going to be focusing on Michigan, Wisconsin, Pennsylvania. You can’t avoid conversation around the Great Lakes.”
Michigan can use that political power for our own good.
“It’s time for us to lead and change the conversation that is happening,” says Gov. Whitmer, “So people are focused on our great Great Lakes.”
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