Democratic Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer is set to give the Democratic response Tuesday night to President Donald Trump’s State of the Union address, saying she couldn’t turn down House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s request.
Whitmer told Fox 2 Detroit last week that giving the State of the Union Response was “mind-boggling,” but that she felt compelled to honor Pelosi’s request. (RELATED: The Tide Is Turning Against Democrats On Impeachment)
“It was mind-boggling, to be honest. This is not something that I’ve ever really thought about,” Whitmer said. “When Speaker Pelosi called, of course, I said yes because what else can you say to Speaker Pelosi.”
Whitmer was elected during the 2018 midterms in a state Trump won in 2016, but the governor has faced criticism for her progressive agenda, and her repeated clashes with Michigan’s Republican legislature. Whitmer’s proposal to increase the state’s gas tax, and her decision to veto several pro-life bills last year, among other things, has earned the governor significant criticism in the state. (RELATED: Michigan GOP Senate Candidate John James Raises Over $1.5 Million In Three Weeks)
Last week, Whitmer announced plans to borrow $3.5 billion to help fix roads in the state, without the input of the legislature. Still, the 48-year-old governor and former state senate minority leader is seen by some as a rising star in her party, and she will get her shot on the national stage Tuesday night.