Livingston County legislators continue call for resignation of Judge Brennan

LANSING, Mich.State Sen. Joe Hune, R-Fowlerville, has been joined by state Reps. Hank Vaupel and Lana Theis in calling for the suspension or resignation of 53rd District Court Judge Theresa Brennan.

The three legislators issued a letter to the Judicial Tenure Commission Thursday calling for the suspension of Brennan while final adjudication of her misconduct is under consideration.

“The Judicial Tenure Commission’s report shows some truly offensive behavior by Judge Brennan,” Hune said. “Given the nature of her violations and the ongoing impacts to the court and to the district, we strongly encourage the commission to follow up with a formal petition to suspend Judge Brennan until the Michigan Supreme Court makes a decision.”

The Judicial Tenure Commission submitted a formal complaint against Brennan earlier this week that included numerous scathing and inflammatory indictments. The Michigan Supreme Court will ultimately decide on punitive action, but in the meantime Brennan still holds a seat on the district court.

Brennan has reportedly been removed from all cases by the authority of County Chief Judge Miriam Cavanaugh, but she has not been formally suspended from her duties.

“This could be a long, drawn-out process lasting months or even years,” said Theis, R-Brighton. “It’s not fair to the taxpayers and residents of our community that this judge remains on the bench while she is brought to answer for her actions.”

The legislators made an appeal directly to Brennan as well, calling for her to resign and put an end to the ongoing controversy.

“To maintain public trust in the judicial system in Livingston County, it is imperative that Judge Theresa Brennan step down immediately or be removed from the bench,” said Vaupel, R-Fowlerville. “Too many lives are being adversely affected by the current situation. People must be able to rely on a fair and impartial judicial system.”

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Hune thanks Judicial Tenure Commission for formal complaint and asks Judge Brennan to resign now

Sen. Joe Hune

Sen. Joe Hune

LANSING, Mich. — State Sen. Joe Hune, R-Fowlerville, supported the decision of the Michigan Judicial Tenure Commission to file a formal complaint against Livingston County Judge Theresa Brennan.

“I’m glad the commission was finally able to do its duty and file a formal complaint against Judge Brennan,” said Hune. “My office has been flooded with heartbreaking and infuriating stories from constituents who have been wronged by this person. It’s comforting to know that justice is still in the justice system, and hopefully this means that Brennan won’t be harming people anymore from her position of power.”

The commission filed a formal complaint against Brennan Tuesday for 11 separate violations including failure to disclose, improper demeanor and providing misrepresentations under investigation. The complaint also showed that Brennen failed to act in a conduct and manner that promotes public confidence in the integrity and impartiality of the judiciary. Her behavior demonstrated a pattern counter to the precept that the judicial system is for the benefit of the litigant and the public, and not the judiciary.

The Judicial Tenure Commission’s complaint will now go to the Michigan Supreme Court which will decide on the ultimate penalties for Brennan’s actions.

“These are serious and embarrassing violations,” said Hune. “Again, I urge Judge Brennan to do the right thing and resign before this debacle continues on any further.”

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Hune calls for resignation of District Court Judge Theresa Brennan

Hune: ‘This charade must end!’

LANSING, Mich. — State Sen. Joe Hune, R-Fowlerville, has called for the resignation of Livingston County District Court Judge Theresa Brennan in a formal letter Friday.

Brennan has been mired in controversy since 2013. An ongoing investigation by the Judicial Tenure Commission into her professional and personal conduct has drawn criticism of Brennan’s behavior from constituents and local officials.

“I’m tired of the continual complaints that flood our office involving Judge Brennan’s antics inside and outside of the courtroom,” Hune said. “Our residents have been bullied far too long by her, and quite frankly I’m beyond sick of it.”

Brennan is being investigated for a conflict of interest violation on a 2013 court case and for misrepresenting the details of that conflict while being questioned. She is also under scrutiny for potentially violating professional standards becoming of a judge, egregious misconduct from the bench and allegedly misappropriating public resources for personal gain. A recent request for a grand jury investigation into Brennan’s behavior has also been made by retired Judge Daniel Burress.

“I hope that the ongoing investigations of Judge Brennan are proceeding with honesty and integrity, but the speed at which they are progressing is pathetic,” Hune said. “The Judicial Tenure Commission’s sloth speed and veil of secrecy are further weakening the confidence our citizens have in the judicial system. Judge Brennan should simply do the right thing and step down. Please end this miscarriage of justice!”

Should the Judicial Tenure Commission find wrongdoing in Brennan’s actions, they will make a recommendation for sanctions to the Michigan Supreme Court, which will decide on a penalty of censure, suspension or removal from office.

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Sen. Hune welcomes Fowlerville pastor to the Capitol

LANSING, Mich. Sen. Joe Hune, R-Fowlerville, welcomed the Rev. Nathaniel Sokol to the Michigan Capitol Wednesday to give the invocation before session.

Sokol serves as pastor at St. Agnes Catholic Church in Fowlerville.

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Editor’s note: The above photographs are available by clicking on the images or by visiting www.SenatorJoeHune.com/photowire.

Sen. Hune welcomes district guests for 24th Senate Memorial Day Service

LANSING, Mich. Sen. Joe Hune, R-Fowlerville, (right) welcomed World War II veteran Dwight Sachau from Hartland and Gold Star Mother Jennifer Clarke from Corunna to the Senate floor Thursday.

The guests from Hune’s 22nd district were part of the 24th Annual Senate Memorial Day Service — a special ceremony to honor our servicemen and servicewomen who have given their lives for our country.

After the ceremony, Hune hosted a luncheon with district veterans and their guests.

The Senate Memorial Day Service is archived on MISenate.viebit.com and is available to stream or download.

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Editor’s note: The above photograph is available by clicking on the image or by visiting www.SenatorJoeHune.com/photowire.

Sen. Hune and Rep. Vaupel welcome Adam Coon to the Capitol

LANSING, Mich. Sen. Joe Hune, R-Fowlerville, and Rep. Hank Vaupel, R-Fowlerville, welcomed Adam Coon Thursday to the state Capitol.

Coon, a Fowlerville native, is an All-American college wrestler for the University of Michigan and an NCAA championship medalist.

Coon was recognized on the Senate floor for his outstanding record of achievement in collegiate athletics and for his commitment to academic excellence. In addition to his accomplished record in wrestling, Coon managed to maintain a 4.0 GPA in his aerospace engineering program.

“It’s a rare pleasure to be able to honor a local hero like Adam,” Hune said. “This young man has a bright future ahead of him; I look forward to hearing about his future success.”

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Sen. Hune supports Medicaid workforce engagement

LANSING, Mich. — State Sen. Joe Hune, R-Fowlerville, voted Thursday to support a workforce engagement requirement for Medicaid benefits.

The new rules would require able-bodied adults between ages 19-64 to spend an average of 29 hours a week working, receiving job training, or getting formal education to receive Medicaid benefits.

Michigan joins three other states that have waivers approved to require workforce engagement for Medicaid and many other states are lining up get similar waivers approved.

“Making people reliant on the government for life’s necessities does not empower them or improve their situation,” Hune said. “I heard a lot of absurd language calling this bill disgraceful. What I think is truly disgraceful is trapping people in a cycle of poverty and victimhood so that they have no choice but to relinquish their God-given freedom to certain politicians who genuinely disdain them.”

Hune voted against the 2013 expansion of Medicaid benefits in Michigan that allowed citizens above the poverty line to enroll in the program. At the time, only 400,000 new people were expected to sign up, but currently Medicaid enrollment has ballooned to over 700,000.

“Michigan’s economy is roaring back, the leadership in both Washington and Lansing have cut taxes, and the unemployment rate is the lowest it’s been in 15 years,” Hune said. “Now is the time either to enter the workforce or to seek out the education or training that will enable someone to do so.”

Hune added that with more people engaged in productive work, there would be fewer costs associated with Medicaid.

“If we can sensibly stem the ever-increasing costs of government programs like Medicaid, we have an obligation to do so,” Hune said. “The measure of success for welfare programs should be how many people no longer need them.”

Senate Bill 897 includes many exceptions for circumstances such as pregnancy, illness, medical caregiving, disability, substance abuse treatment, deaths in the family, and others.

The bill now goes to the Michigan House of Representatives for consideration.

 

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Sen. Hune and Rep. Vaupel will honor Adam Coon

LANSING, Mich. Sen. Joe Hune, R-Fowlerville, and Rep. Hank Vaupel, R-Fowlerville, will welcome Adam Coon to the state capitol on Thursday.

Coon, a Fowlerville native, is an All-American college wrestler for the University of Michigan and a two-time NCAA championship medalist.

Coon will be given an honorary tribute on the Michigan Senate floor in recognition of his outstanding record of achievement.

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Sen. Hune welcomes Hartland hockey team to Capitol

LANSING, Mich. Sen. Joe Hune, R-Fowlerville, and Rep. Hank Vaupel, R-Fowlerville, welcomed the Hartland High School boys hockey team to the state capitol on Thursday.

Hartland won the Division 2 state hockey championship this year. While the team had made it to the state finals two times previously, this is the first state title the team has earned.

“This is an incredible achievement by a group of really exceptional young men,” Hune said. “Congratulations to Hartland and their coaching staff. These boys certainly have a bright future ahead of them.”

Hartland had an exceptional tournament, outscoring their six opponents by a combined score of 48-4.

Another Livingston County boys hockey team won a state championship this year. Brighton High School took home the Division 1 title for the second consecutive year.

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Editor’s note: A print-quality version of the above photo is available by clicking on the image or by visiting the senator’s website at www.SenatorPeterMacGregor.com and clicking “Photowire” under the Media Center tab.

 

Sen. Hune supports sexual assault legislation

Senator Joe Hune

Senator Joe Hune

LANSING, Mich. — The Michigan Senate on Wednesday approved legislation that would help legally address sexual assault charges and allow for extended protections against abuse in the state of Michigan.

“This topic is something that I and all of my colleagues in the Senate feel strongly about,” said Hune, R-Fowlerville. “The intention of this legislation is to protect our children from future abuse and to bring justice to those who have suffered abuse in the past. No child should have to deal with the emotional hardship of criminal sexual conduct.”

Senate Bills 871-880 would expand numerous existing laws and create new legal protections. The bills would allow prosecutors to bring charges of second-degree criminal sexual conduct against a minor, no matter when the act of abuse occurred. The bills would also allow charges of third-degree criminal sexual conduct against a minor up to the survivor’s 48th birthday, or within 30 years of an accused being identified by DNA evidence.

The bills would also allow victims of childhood sexual abuse to remain publicly anonymous when bringing a claim in the Michigan Court of Claims.

In addition to legal protections, the bill also would expand mandatory reporting requirements to include sports coaches, athletic trainers and college professors. If an employee fails to report such crimes, they could face a felony charge with up to two years imprisonment, a $5,000 fine, or both. A volunteer serving in one of these positions who fails to report abuse would face a misdemeanor of up to one year in jail, or a $1,000 fine, or both.

The legislation now heads to the House for further consideration.

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