Senator Gretchen Whitmer

Ingham County: Alaiedon Township, Aurelius Township, Delhi Charter Township, East Lansing, Ingham Township, Lansing, Lansing Township, Leroy Township, Locke Township, Meridian Township, Onondaga Township, Wheatfield Township, White Oak Township, Williamston, Williamstown Township

Senator Whitmer Says MEDC Violated Its Own Policy in Controversial Pure Michigan Ad

Calls for Thorough Investigation into How Ad Was Approved

Lansing – Senate Democratic Leader Gretchen Whitmer cited an official document from the Michigan Economic Development Corporation today that raises further questions into how the use of the Pure Michigan brand was approved to tout the Governor’s “Right to Work” agenda in a full page advertisement in the Wall Street Journal. Whitmer said the ad seemingly violates the MEDC’s own statement about the importance of protecting the integrity of the Pure Michigan brand.

“This administration’s use of the beloved Pure Michigan brand to advance the political agenda of Governor Snyder is outright unacceptable and an insult to the people of Michigan,” said Whitmer. “The MEDC itself acknowledges the need to protect the Pure Michigan brand from being misused yet somehow its inclusion in this blatantly political advertisement was approved. We deserve to know how that could be allowed to happen.”

In a document dated February 2012, entitled “Pure Michigan Brand Guidelines,” an introductory letter from Finney himself reads “like any brand, the Pure Michigan brand will only remain powerful by being both pervasive and consistent…it will be increasingly critical that everyone involved maintain the look, tone, feel and voice of the brand.”

“The Governor continues to deny involvement in this advertisement’s creation, but it’s time for either he or MEDC President Mike Finney to step up and demand accountability,” added Whitmer. “This terrible idea has already raised significant concerns about damage to the Pure Michigan brand and our state’s tourism industry as a result, so the Governor must order a full investigation into how this was allowed to happen so that we can believe it won’t happen again.”

A video was released today that highlights the difference between Pure Michigan and Snyder’s Michigan. It is available online at: