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E-M:/ In Michigan, environment is a hot political topic - Free Press



Title: In Michigan, environment is a hot political topic - Fr
In Michigan, environment is a hot political topic
Bush, Kerry learn their policies matter in a green-minded state
October 18, 2004

BY HUGH McDIARMID JR.

FREE PRESS STAFF WRITER



Presidential candidates learn the hard way not to mess around with Michigan's environment.


Case in point: Both President George W. Bush and Sen. John Kerry once suggested Great Lakes water diversion was worthy of discussion -- Bush in 2001 and Kerry in February.


Only once.


"There was a very quick public outcry condemning those statements," recalls James Clift, policy advisor to the Michigan Environmental Council. "They got caught blurting out general statements that could have been taken wrong."


Both candidates backtracked furiously and have consistently preached an "under no circumstances" diversion policy since then.
That environmental message and others are tailored to Michigan and other key Great Lakes swing states including Pennsylvania, Wisconsin and Ohio. It is a small anomaly in a national political landscape where clean air and water consistently rank below war, the economy and health care among voter concerns. The environment was virtually invisible in the presidential debates.

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In Michigan, environment is a hot political topic. Presidential candidates learn the hard way not to mess around with Michigan's environment. Detroit Free Press, Michigan.
http://www.freep.com/news/mich/evote18e_20041018.htm