Traverse City Record-Eagle

Region

July 8, 2011

Local Snyder fundraiser email breaks law

TRAVERSE CITY — Area Democrats want to know why Gov. Rick Snyder used his staff and local county governments to spread invitations to a Grand Traverse County Republican Party fundraiser.

Greg Andrews, the governor's Marquette-based northern Michigan representative, sent an email to local governments that encouraged officials to attend the Governor's Breakfast on Saturday during the National Cherry Festival.

The breakfast is a traditional event that acts as a fundraiser for the local Democratic or Republican party before the Cherry Royale Parade.

The email was referred to Prosecutor Alan Schneider, who said he won't take action.

Schneider said a recent state Supreme Court decision determined that the use of even one taxpayer-funded keystroke for political fundraising violates state law, though it has to be a knowing violation.

"I guess someone should be asking Greg Andrews why he's using the Governor's office to send out invitations ... with an attachment that's a Republican Party request for donations," Schneider said.

Snyder spokeswoman Geralyn Lasher called the email "a serious lack of judgement."

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