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Politics & Government

Week in Review: Rogers leaves Trump's team, newspaper cutbacks and a potential flag redo

Michigan flag.
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Michigan's state flag would get a makeover under a proposed bill.

This Week in Review, Weekend Edition host Rebecca Kruth and senior news analyst Jack Lessenberry talk about a loss to Trump’s transition team, newspaper cutbacks, a possible state flag makeover.

Conversation highlights:

Rogers is out

Former Michigan senator and retired Congressman Mike Rogers was supposed to be in charge of national security planning on Donald Trump’s transition team, but on Tuesday Rogers announced his resignation. Some reports say he was forced off. 

Lessenberry called the move an “ominous sign.”

“Rogers is a dyed in the wool Republican, a very partisan man, but he also lived in a reality-based universe. He told the truth, and he got fired for it which, for me, doesn’t bode well for the coming administration,” Lessenberry said.

Tough times for newspapers

Both of Detroit’s two major newspapers are making deep cuts to their editorial staffs. The Detroit News this week offered buyouts to its entire editorial staff, some 80 people. The Detroit Free Press needs to cut 17 members of its editorial staff to make its 2017 budget. 

Lessenberry says newspapers have been debilitated by classified advertising’s flight to the internet. However he’s not sure either of Detroit’s papers have been run very well.

“[Both papers] seem to have the theory that you can cut your way to prosperity. What they’re doing is making their paper weaker and less valuable and charging more for it,” he said.

A state flag redo?

Michigan’s state flag might be heading for a makeover. A proposed bill would allow for a revamp of the flag and a contest to choose who’ll redesign it. 

When it comes to doing away with the flag’s deep blue and coat of arms with the eagle and the elk and the moose, Lessenberry has just four words for bill sponsor Sen. Steve Bieda (D-Warren):

“Don’t touch my flag.”

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