If I were Jennifer Granholm, I’d crawl under the desk and not come out for a good, long while. Her performance last night at the Democratic convention was so bizarre that an amused and bemused Nolan Finley of The Detroit News speculated that she was either possessed by the ghost of Joe Biden -- “or maybe she had a squirrel up her pant leg.” Cartoonist Henry Payne, editor of Michigan View, thought that maybe she was channeling “Arsenio Hall on crack.” Me? I think she got drunk on her own clever lines. (Her quip that “Mitt Romney’s cars take the elevator and workers get the shaft” was admittedly a hoot.)
But even more bizarre than Granholm’s convention appearance was that she was invited to make one in the first place. She was arguably the worst governor of her time who, during her eight-year term, took Michigan’s teetering economy into her firm hands and gave it a good, hard push off the cliff.
On her watch, the state's ranking in per capita GDP plummeted to 41st place from 24th. Michigan became the only state to suffer a net out-migration during the past decade, and its credit rating was repeatedly downgraded.
But since unemployment is the topic of the day, how was Granholm’s job-creation record? Worse than Katrina-struck Louisiana’s. Unemployment jumped from 6.8 percent when she was elected to 14.1 percent at its peak in 2009 – although some believe it reached as high as 15.2 percent. Consider this (generously inaccurate) chart from The Daily Caller comparing Michigan’s unemployment rate with the national average:
Michigan’s unemployment figures would undoubtedly have looked even worse if its residents hadn’t hit the exit doors. But none of that prevented Granholm from brazenly writing a grand paean to herself titled: A Governor's Story: The Fight for Jobs and America's Future.
Granholm, then, has long practice pretending that she has saved jobs that she has actually killed – which, of course, is precisely Obama’s campaign theme. Consider his jobs record:
In other words, Granholm understands Obama’s dilemma better than anyone else on the planet and the kind of political pole dances that must be performed on convention floors to keep people distracted.
And the loss of dignity is just a small price to pay for a future Cabinet position.