Beto O’Rourke heads to Flint today

    Beto O'Rourke in Ferndale
    Beto O'Rourke with Michigan Regional Council of Carpenters President Tom Lutz in Ferndale, March 18, 2019 | Susan J. Demas

    Former U.S. Rep. Beto O’Rourke (D-Texas) is set to hold a town hall in Flint Wednesday afternoon following an appearance at a presidential forum for the national NAACP convention in Detroit.

    The O’Rourke campaign confirmed the event that was first reported by MLive. O’Rourke is slated to first tour 100K Ideas, a nonprofit business incubator that’s helped businesses since the Flint water crisis.

    “As a former small business owner, Beto understands the needs of entrepreneurs who are so often locked out of the exact resources their businesses need to continue to support their communities and the broader economy,” an O’Rourke spokesman said in a statement. “That’s why Beto is so excited to join leaders and innovators in Flint today to discuss the ways we can rebuild the community and local economy following the water crisis — starting with his plans to boost women- and minority-owned small businesses.”

    O’Rourke campaigned in Southeast Michigan in March.

    NAACP prez forum in Detroit slated for same time as Mueller testimony

    At the NAACP forum on Wednesday morning, O’Rourke will be joined by: former Vice President Joe Biden; U.S. Sen. Cory Booker (D-N.J.); South Bend, Ind., Mayor Pete Buttigieg; former U.S. Housing Secretary Julian Castro; U.S. Sen. Kamala Harris (D-Calif.), U.S. Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.); U.S. Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.); U.S. Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) and former Massachusetts Gov. Bill Weld.

    O’Rourke will be back in Detroit next week for the second round of Democratic National Committee debates on July 30 and 31.

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    Susan J. Demas is a 19-year journalism veteran and one of the state’s foremost experts on Michigan politics, appearing on MSNBC, CNN, NPR and WKAR-TV’s “Off the Record.” In addition to serving as Editor-in-Chief, she is the Advance’s chief columnist, writing on women, LGBTQs, the state budget, the economy and more. Most recently, she served as Vice President of Farough & Associates, Michigan’s premier political communications firm. For almost five years, Susan was the Editor and Publisher of Inside Michigan Politics, the most-cited political newsletter in the state. Susan’s award-winning political analysis has run in more than 80 national, international and regional media outlets, including the Guardian U.K., NBC News, the New York Times, the Detroit News and MLive. She is the only Michigan journalist to be named to the Washington Post’s list of “Best Political Reporters,” the Huffington Post’s list of “Best Political Tweeters” and the Washington Post’s list of “Best Political Bloggers.” Susan was the recipient of a prestigious Knight Foundation fellowship in nonprofits and politics. She served as Deputy Editor for MIRS News and helped launch the Michigan Truth Squad, the Center for Michigan’s fact-checking project. She started her journalism career reporting on the Iowa caucuses for The (Cedar Rapids) Gazette. Susan has hiked over 3,000 solo miles across four continents and climbed more than 60 mountains. She also enjoys dragging her husband and two teenagers along, even if no one else wants to sleep in a tent anymore.

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