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Jeb Bush says slimmed-down tax code, fewer enviro regs would help Michigan

Jeb Bush
Gage Skidmore
Wikimedia Commons

Former Florida Governor Jeb Bush says a slimmed-down tax code and fewer environmental regulations would boost the economies of manufacturing states – and promises to adopt that sort of “pro-growth” strategy should make the Republican ticket attractive to voters in industrial states like Michigan and Pennsylvania come November of 2016.

“The only way to grow income for the middle class and lift people out of poverty is to grow the economy, and I know how to do it,” he told a crowd gathered at the Kent County Republican headquarters in Grand Rapids.

Bush took aim at workplace rules and clean air regulations adopted by the Obama administration, and some that are the subject of court battles.

Bush also said he was perplexed  by opposition to hydraulic fracturing – or “fracking.” 

He said it has created a “veritable revolution” in the energy industry that deserves to be celebrated with “a marching band.”

“It’s the best deal American consumers have gotten because of lower utility prices and lower gas prices,” he said.

Environmentalists say the chemical used in fracking pose a threat to water supplies, and can create geological weaknesses. A petition campaign in Michigan is looking to put a fracking ban on the November 2016 ballot.

Bush was in Grand Rapids trying to build support in the March 8 primary, but he also said the GOP ticket should make a strong play next November for blue-leaning industrial states like Pennsylvania and Michigan.  

He says Michigan has experienced a surge of growth while Republican Governor Rick Snyder has been in charge.

“I would say Michigan should be in play because of the economic activity that is really – there’s a renewal here, and it isn’t because of Washington’s top-down policies.”

The last Republican presidential candidate to win Michigan in the November election was Bush’s father. That was in 1988. 

Rick Pluta is Senior Capitol Correspondent for the Michigan Public Radio Network. He has been covering Michigan’s Capitol, government, and politics since 1987.
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