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Poll Showing Schauer Closing in on Snyder Reveals Misperceptions About School Spending

Even among his Republican base, governor fights the perception he's cut education spending – when, in fact, education spending is at its highest level since 2009.

Gov. Rick Snyder is still leading in a poll released by a bipartisan public relations firm in Lansing, but voters appear to be unclear on his support for public education. (Patch file photo)
Gov. Rick Snyder is still leading in a poll released by a bipartisan public relations firm in Lansing, but voters appear to be unclear on his support for public education. (Patch file photo)

Democrat Mark Schauer is inching closer in his campaign to unseat Republican Gov. Rick Snyder.

Schauer is still trailing the governor with 39 percent of likely voters, compared with 42 percent for Snyder, the Detroit News reports. The results of the poll of 600 potential voters by the bipartisan public relations firm Lambert, Edwards & Associates were released exclusively to the Detroit News.

The report said that although Snyder has increased public education spending $1 billion during his three years in office, 53.8 percent thought education spending had declined, while only 18 percent said it had risen.

Even among his Republican base, Snyder is fighting the perception that he’s cut spending for public education, with 34 percent saying state school aid has declined. Only 27.5 percent of Republicans said it had increased, and 35 percent were unsure.

That’s could be a problem for the governor, T.J. Bucholz, senior director of public affairs for the firm conducting the poll, told the newspaper.

“They are going to be on the road trying to convince voters that they have increased education funding to the highest level since ’09, and while that may be true, it’s not what the voters believe right now,” he said.

Schauer, a former congressman from Battle Creek, has been running an ad paid for by the Democratic Governors Association that blast Snyder’s record on public education, saying he cut direct aid to schools by nearly $1 billion during his first year in office.

Snyder said the majority of the $470-per-pupil cut in 2011 resulted from the expiration of one-time federal aid of $300 per student. He also said he put money into different areas of education, including teacher retirement payments, the newspaper said.

Though the poll results don’t reflect Snyder’s actual record on education spending, “the poll confirms what parents and school leaders have been saying for a while: We need to invest in the classroom and schools,” William Mayes, Michigan Association of School administrators, told the newspaper.

>>> Read more poll results on The Detroit News.
niteman March 18, 2014 at 01:08 PM
Also - Look at what you are getting back from your State tax return. You'll see that you aren't getting the refund from MI that you used to (and it is not because you are paying less taxes).
DJG March 18, 2014 at 03:28 PM
niteman, how much has your pay gone down since RTW was enacted? None. Thought so. You can thank Bob King and trying to ram Prop 2 down our throats for RTW. If Prop 2 wouldn't have been defeated so soundly, there would be absolutely no reason for RTW. Guess that shoe doesn't work so well on the other foot. Sorry you need a union to tell you what you're worth, it's clear you can't provide for yourself of your family on your own without the shepherd tending his sheep. Here's my challenge for you, which you will never, ever answer. Show me a state that was prosperous before RTW. Then show me, as a direct result, how that state went into decline as a result of RTW. Your "race to the bottom" as you call it. Facts are...you can't. Race to the bottom is just your union talking points of fear 101. It's all you have left. Membership and dues are declining because people no longer need a union. What unions used to stand for, better working conditions and fair pay...and what they used to be against, greed...has switched. Rank and file needs their paycheck for doing nothing and gaining their golden parachute. Go get them paid....
Frank Smair April 19, 2014 at 08:08 PM
I’m not sure that I care for either candidate.
niteman April 23, 2014 at 12:52 PM
DJG - Sorry but was busy working. No - my pay hasn't gone down since RTW, but that is simpleton's way of thinking. It is not about how it affects those with established careers and employment, it is about those who are starting new jobs for less pay. Here's a link that shows that there is no discernable benefit for peoples way of life in RTW states, in fact - they are now worse off. Of course, you will blow it off because this info is supplied by the AFL-CIO and they must be bad, right? After all, they helped create the evil middle class you so like to demonize. You should really try this thing called Google. You might find that there's more than meets the Fox-watcher's eye. http://www.mnaflcio.org/news/right-work-laws-get-facts
Bob May 14, 2014 at 12:23 PM
niteman Don't confuse DJG with the facts.

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