Senate rejects another Whitmer appointee to hunting panel

Posted at 11:03 AM, Feb 27, 2020
and last updated 2020-02-27 13:04:53-05

LANSING, Mich. (AP) — For the second time this month, Michigan's Republican-led Senate has blocked one of Democratic Gov. Gretchen Whitmer's appointments to the state commission that regulates hunting and fishing.

The Senate on Thursday rejected George Heartwell, a former mayor of Grand Rapids.

Gun-rights groups opposed his nomination in part because, as mayor, he backed an ordinance banning guns in public buildings and was a member of a gun-control group co-founded by former New York Mayor Mike Bloomberg.

Heartwell, who no longer hunts but fishes, has said he supports the Second Amendment and hunting.

Wednesday night, the governor's office released a statement on the expected vote to reject Heartwell:

“George Heartwell is a former Christian minister, an avid fisherman, former gun owner, who testified in a public hearing that he supports the Second Amendment and the right to hunt. These partisan games to reject the governor’s appointees clearly depart from the long established tradition captured in the Sikkema standard of approving well-qualified gubernatorial appointees. It’s sad that Sen. Lucido would rather waste time on partisan games than focus on getting things done for the people of Michigan.”