Can It Be Done?

In 1998 I decided to run for Governor of Michigan. It was a, shall I say… unique experience. With no experience in politics and a few weeks to go in the Democratic primary race, I jumped into the campaign if for no other reason than to get the establishment candidates to begin talking about meaningful issues. I won the nomination with a guerilla campaign, organized from the streets up. I walked picket lines with UAW workers protesting the exporting of jobs to third world countries. I went to decrepit schools to illustrate the poverty and hopelessness prevailing. I went to events organized by other candidates and funded by their corporate sponsors, to challenge and debate them.  But the part that I was most proud of was the fact that I proposed radical (for the time) policies that, had they been implemented, would have made a tremendous difference to the people of Michigan.  These policies included a medical insurance exchange to reduce health care costs by up to 30% (which insurance companies and their Republican employees in the Legislature still resist), consolidating school districts before they became bankrupt (as they are now), and legislating safeguards against becoming a “right to (not) work” State. It was a pro-consumer, Social Libertarian platform.

Years of disastrous administrations like Engler, Granholm and Snyder have put Michigan on the brink of financial and social collapse. How many jobs are being lost, cities going bankrupt and school districts are collapsing today, while the religious extremists in the Republican Party are exclusively focused on legislating how you live your life? These should be the questions in the next campaign for Governor:  is Michigan a place you would want to start and raise a family today? Is there a future for them here, in Michigan?

I’ve been asked many times since 1998, but for the first time since then I am thinking about it… about challenging the powers again next year. Can it be done?

9 Responses to Can It Be Done?

  1. Bill Burton says:

    I would like to see you run for Govenor again. We cannot survive another Snyder term…
    I am a 77 year old GM Retiree and I will willing to work for your election..
    Please think about running and I pledge to you, my support…

  2. laratante says:

    Yes, please do it!

  3. I voted for you then and will do it again. You make sense. Not too many people do these days. Go for it.

  4. Lenny Wells says:


  5. Probably nervy of me to ask but I am rather curious… Is it true that in your ’98 campaign you said you wouldn’t support physician-assisted suicide? Or did the writers of You Don’t Know Jack merely take dramatic license?

  6. Rex A. Umney says:

    I’d say go for it Mr. Fieger!

    You got a well established name that is very well known and highly respected in Michigan with the core voters. That’s an advantage that no one else has. Whenever I hear someone talking about being done wrong and needing a guy who will fight to the bitter end your name comes up, “Call Fieger” everyone says! That’s a powerful endorsement that no-one else has and lord knows whenever I vote I’m always looking for a name that I know.

    Of course, I’m not a Democrat; but only because I don’t make my living working for the government, unions, or big corporations. I am a self employed “Mom and Pops” if you will so my ideals align more with the Republican side, but that’s not to say I wouldn’t vote for you.

    It’s screwed up this two party system we have, as there are some things Democrats stand for that have really helped me in my life, for example the excellent heath care we have in Michigan for kids. Being self employed I don’t have access to good insurance for a reasonable price, but Michigan IS a good place to raise a family if only because we make sure our kids have access to these kinds of insurance programs and trust me when I say it’s an incredible load off parents shoulders who otherwise could not afford these insane insurance rates for their children. All states have bad areas, and it’s not just exclusive to our state. Michigan is a great place with lots to offer.

    Don’t be afraid, as it’s not your style. You can do it! The only question is will it change you? Will it corrupt you? These are all things you can worry about after you win, but remember you would no longer be a private citizen, you have to want this kind of job to make a difference (for the better) and trust me when I say it will be very easy to forget this when the power has been handed over to you. I would imagine everything will change overnight and we will finally get to see the “real” Geoffrey Fieger.

    Seems there are very few who exit politics without being tarnished. Seems the only people to exit politics with respect are the ones who get assassinated, which just means they fought so hard they had to be killed. I understand you can’t please everyone and for that reason you really have to strike a balance. But I think you will do just fine and I think you have an advantage that many do not. You have worked long and hard at your profession to build your name, it would be a shame not to put it to use providing your intentions are good.

    Unfortunately, to win in politics you’re going to have to make some changes. You are going to have to have to show a compassionate side with a view that everyone can agree with, even if they don’t want to. It’s hard to fault someone if their intentions are good and your campaign will require level headiness at all times. Don’t pull an Obama and blame everyone else to get in office, even though Granholm was a pathetic excuse for a governor I’d focus more on what you can offer and how you plan to get it done. If a worthless bag of flesh from Canada like Granholm could become governor, then it should be a cake-walk for you!

    It’s been a long time since 1998, the stigma of Dr. Kevorkian may have had something to do with the upset, but what are you going to do? It had to be done, it was your job and it got your name out there.

    I am sure running for governor is no small feat, the financial end of it would crush many right off the bat and if that didn’t the stress and day to day grind running would most defiantly take its toll. But I don’t see you as someone who cowers to a challenge. If your ducks are in a row put your best foot forward and put your wheels in motion!

    Good luck Mr. Fieger! You can do it!

  7. Kim Delks says:

    PLEASE run for Governor of Michigan!! This state has a careless, power-drunk man running it. it needs to stop! He and the republicans are changing and creating all types of crazy, self-serving laws, behind closed doors. They don’t care about the people, only their parties interest. SOMEBODY NEEDS TO STOP THEM! You can do it, you definitely have my vote and I will volunteer for your campaign!!

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