Riley Beggin

Riley Beggin is a Capitol reporter covering Michigan politics, including legislative, gubernatorial and other statewide elections. She joined Bridge in January 2018 after working at KPCC, Los Angeles’ NPR member station. Before that, she was a fellow at ABC News’ Washington Bureau and an intern with NPR’s investigative unit. Riley majored in history and international relations at the University of Wisconsin—Madison. She also holds a master’s degree in investigative journalism from the University of Missouri. You can reach Riley at rbeggin@bridgemi.com or call her at 517-657-3580.

Articles

Michigan becomes the first state in U.S. to ban flavored vaping products

September 4, 2019 | Riley Beggin

The six-month ban bars the sale of flavored e-cigarettes commonly used by young people, including fruity, sweet and mint-flavored products. 

Michigan House Dem leader says Whitmer’s 45-cent gas tax is probably dead

August 29, 2019 | Riley Beggin

Republicans have said the hefty tax hike is dead on arrival. That’s why Democrats should start considering other alternatives to raise $2.5 billion for roads, House Minority Leader Christine Greig said. 

Michigan House urges resignation of Inman, who told donors ‘I need money’

August 29, 2019 | Riley Beggin

State Rep. Larry Inman, who says he’s struggling with addiction, has insisted he won’t step down. New texts submitted to court claim he sought a ‘load’ of money for his votes.

Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer: Leaders should 'stop playing games' on roads funding

August 28, 2019 | Riley Beggin

Time is running out for legislative leaders and the governor to come to an agreement on how to spend the state’s nearly $60 billion budget.

Michigan committee approves health warning labels for marijuana

August 27, 2019 | Riley Beggin

Under the legislation, all cannabis would need to be packaged with a warning against use during pregnancy.

Pressure builds on Michigan Republicans for roads plan to avoid shutdown

August 21, 2019 | Riley Beggin

Democratic Gov. Gretchen Whitmer is portraying GOP legislative leaders as failing to seriously negotiate on how to raise $2.5 billion to repair the state’s roads and bridges. Now, the business community is exerting its own pressure on the GOP.

What to expect from the Michigan Legislature this fall

August 20, 2019 | Riley Beggin

State lawmakers are back in Lansing Tuesday. Here are some of the major priorities the Legislature expects to tackle before the end of the year.

Michigan’s Secretary of State promised 30-minute waits — lines are worse

August 13, 2019 | Riley Beggin

Jocelyn Benson swept into office vowing to serve customers in 30 minutes. But wait times in 2019 are at their highest in five years, up to two or three hours in some branches. Benson says it's the result of long-term underinvestment to be solved with hard structural change.

Voters Not Politicians asks to intervene in Michigan GOP redistricting suit

August 12, 2019 | Riley Beggin

VNP, the group behind the successful drive to create an independent body to draw political lines in Michigan, seeks entry in a Republican lawsuit to have that commission shut down before it starts.

Michigan board approves recall petition for indicted Rep. Larry Inman

August 1, 2019 | Lindsay VanHulle, Riley Beggin

Voters in Grand Traverse County want to recall Inman after his indictment on federal charges for alleged bribery, extortion and lying to FBI agents while in office. His attorney says he will consider an appeal on the recall petition’s approval.

Michigan Republicans sue to stop redistricting commission before it starts

July 30, 2019 | Riley Beggin, Lindsay VanHulle

Republican plaintiffs argue the independent, voter-approved commission violates their First and 14th-Amendment rights by forbidding some people with political ties from serving. They want a federal judge to stop the state state officials from seating the commission.

Michigan jails fill as crime sinks and nobody seems to know why

July 24, 2019 | Riley Beggin

As a bipartisan task force looks into Michigan’s county data, researchers at the Pew Charitable Trusts are trying to make sense of a patchwork of jail records. It’s going to be a heavy lift, with only months to get the job done.

Will this application help Michigan select a fair redistricting commission?

July 18, 2019 | Riley Beggin

The Secretary of State has released a proposed application to serve on the new redistricting commission. The public can offer comment through Aug. 9.

New rules to give residents of poor cities piece of Michigan pot industry

July 18, 2019 | Riley Beggin

The state’s marijuana regulatory industry announced rules to give license discounts for qualified residents in cities that were most heavily targeted for pot crimes. An industry official said the rules are well-meaning, but she doubts their impact.

Michigan prison inmates need job skills, but technology books are banned

July 18, 2019 | Riley Beggin

Basic reference books on computers and electronics, starting a business or even driving a truck are prohibited as perceived threats to the “order and security” of prisons. Officials say they are now rethinking this policy.

From pastor’s son to power broker, Lee Chatfield takes Lansing

July 8, 2019 | Riley Beggin

The youngest Michigan Speaker in a century, Chatfield says humility gained through reading Scripture has helped him navigate the political minefields of divided government. The biggest test of his leadership skills is still to come.

3 ways Michigan elections remain vulnerable — and what the state can do about it

July 2, 2019 | Riley Beggin

Elections experts say Michigan is now ahead of the curve in making sure state elections are protected against tampering. But some threats still keep security officials up at night.

Gov. Whitmer to Benton Harbor High: Raise scores, balance books or close

July 1, 2019 | Riley Beggin

The state of Michigan released details of its one-year extension to the impoverished West Michigan school district. Improve performance of its high school or it will be closed next year and students sent to neighboring districts. 

 

What the U.S. Supreme Court gerrymandering ruling means for Michigan

June 27, 2019 | Riley Beggin, Lindsay VanHulle

The high court ruled Thursday that federal courts have no role to play in ensuring states avoid drawing political lines that favor one political party over another. The decision kills a lower court decision requiring Michigan Republicans to redraw lines for 2020.

Reaction in Michigan to U.S. Supreme Court gerrymandering decision

June 27, 2019 | Riley Beggin, Lindsay VanHulle

The high court ruled Thursday that federal courts won’t handle cases challenging partisan gerrymandering. In Michigan, Republicans applauded the decision, and Democrats lampooned it.

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