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

Dana Nessel, Michigan’s brash attorney general, plows through Lansing

Dana Nessel, Michigan’s brash attorney general, plows through Lansing

April 19, 2019 | Riley Beggin

Just months into office, the state’s top lawyer has dueled with Lansing Republicans, the Trump administration and the Catholic church, while reversing course on lawsuits by her conservative predecessor. Got a problem with that?

Jocelyn Benson plans overhaul of Michigan Secretary of State offices

Jocelyn Benson plans overhaul of Michigan Secretary of State offices

April 11, 2019 | Riley Beggin

The Secretary of State visited all 131 branch offices in her first 100 days in office. What she found, she said, “was heartbreaking.”

Bills to bar Michigan 'sanctuary cities' face headwinds in Lansing

Bills to bar Michigan 'sanctuary cities' face headwinds in Lansing

April 11, 2019 | Riley Beggin

Proponents say they would protect law enforcement from political retribution. Opponents say it would encourage racial profiling and destroy trust between local police and immigrant communities. The bills face headwinds in Lansing.

After years of impasse, bipartisan Lansing drive for criminal justice reform

After years of impasse, bipartisan Lansing drive for criminal justice reform

April 9, 2019 | Riley Beggin

Republicans and Democrats are teaming up on measures ranging from cash bail to asset forfeiture reform to finding ways to better protect young prisoners.

How high is too high to drive? That’s up to police in Michigan

How high is too high to drive? That’s up to police in Michigan

April 8, 2019 | Riley Beggin

A state commission tells lawmakers not to set a blood limit for stoned driving because science hasn’t caught up with legalization. Critics fear that’s ripe for abuse.

Katie Fahey of Voters Not Politicians to take Michigan model national

Katie Fahey of Voters Not Politicians to take Michigan model national

March 31, 2019 | Riley Beggin

At 27, she was a political novice. Now 29, Fahey is jumping to the national stage. She shares some hard lessons from the campaign to end gerrymandering in Michigan that she launched with a simple Facebook post.

Voters Not Politicians mulls its next Michigan battle

Voters Not Politicians mulls its next Michigan battle

March 31, 2019 | Riley Beggin

VNP spearheaded the successful 2018 campaign to end legislatively-drawn voting lines in Michigan. Now the group is marching forward with a new leader, looking to take cues from voters across the state on what to fight for next.

Grand Rapids seeks to raise African-Americans’ stake in marijuana boom

Grand Rapids seeks to raise African-Americans’ stake in marijuana boom

March 26, 2019 | Riley Beggin

Minority communities have borne the brunt of marijuana arrests. Now that pot is legal in Michigan, the city is giving priority to residents in lower-income communities seeking to profit from licensed businesses.

Michigan House approves records transparency for Legislature and Governor

Michigan House approves records transparency for Legislature and Governor

March 19, 2019 | Riley Beggin

Following unanimous House approval, the bipartisan package will now move to a Senate committee, where it could face headwinds.

Bills to improve Michigan transparency still have loopholes, critics say

Bills to improve Michigan transparency still have loopholes, critics say

March 12, 2019 | Riley Beggin

Transparency advocates say the FOIA package would be a big step forward for the state, but push back on loopholes still present in legislation.

For cash-strapped police in Michigan, asset forfeiture bills could be a blow

For cash-strapped police in Michigan, asset forfeiture bills could be a blow

March 12, 2019 | Riley Beggin

Whether the concern is personal liberty or social justice, legislation reining in police property seizures is a bipartisan priority in Lansing. Some law enforcement agencies are not happy.

Analysis: Gretchen Whitmer's budget banks on Michigan GOP backing one historic tax hike

Analysis: Gretchen Whitmer's budget banks on Michigan GOP backing one historic tax hike

March 5, 2019 | Lindsay VanHulle, Riley Beggin

Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s budget proposal is based on a series of interlocking monetary moves to fund roads, schools, cleanups and more. The Rube Goldberg-like plan is certainly bold, drawing a mix of admiration and caution.  

Six big proposals in Gretchen Whitmer’s first Michigan budget

Six big proposals in Gretchen Whitmer’s first Michigan budget

March 5, 2019 | Riley Beggin, Lindsay VanHulle

The new governor urges a state spending increase of 3.6 percent, with the centerpiece a 45-cent gas tax hike. She also proposes spending more for schools and to protect drinking water. The budget will test bipartisan pledges with state Republicans.

Is this the year Michigan joins the rest of America on public records?

Is this the year Michigan joins the rest of America on public records?

March 4, 2019 | Jim Malewitz, Riley Beggin

Michigan is one of only two states that exempt the Legislature and the Governor’s office from public records requests. Attempts to change the state’s FOIA act have failed year after year.

Dana Nessel shakes up Flint prosecutions; civil settlement talks underway

Dana Nessel shakes up Flint prosecutions; civil settlement talks underway

February 21, 2019 | Jim Malewitz, Riley Beggin

Saying “the people of Flint deserve nothing short of justice,” Michigan’s attorney general is moving quickly to resolve dozens of civil lawsuits filed in the wake of the Flint lead poisoning crisis.

Michigan AG Dana Nessel turns up heat with Catholic Church over sex abuse

Michigan AG Dana Nessel turns up heat with Catholic Church over sex abuse

February 21, 2019 | Riley Beggin

Catholic dioceses in Michigan are having alleged sex abuse victims sign non-disclosure agreements, Attorney General Dana Nessel said Thursday. She encouraged victims to report their abuse to authorities even if they’ve signed agreements not to talk.

Dana Nessel to MSU: ‘Do the right thing’ and cooperate more with Nassar investigation

Dana Nessel to MSU: ‘Do the right thing’ and cooperate more with Nassar investigation

February 21, 2019 | Riley Beggin

At a news conference Thursday, Michigan’s attorney general said she’s frustrated with Michigan State University’s level of cooperation in the investigation surrounding Larry Nassar.

Republicans to Whitmer: Where’s the cash? Doubts on climate plan.

Republicans to Whitmer: Where’s the cash? Doubts on climate plan.

February 13, 2019 | Riley Beggin

Republican leaders say they agree with the Democratic governor that roads need fixing, but aren’t ready to raise taxes or fees to do it. They also signaled opposition to raising the state’s college-going rate and Whitmer’s PFAS and climate change plans.

Analysis: Eight ways Gretchen Whitmer vows to improve Michigan

Analysis: Eight ways Gretchen Whitmer vows to improve Michigan

February 12, 2019 | Riley Beggin, Lindsay VanHulle

The new Democratic governor outlined her policy priorities during her first State of the State address Tuesday. Bridge offers context behind the proposals and what Republicans and other skeptics had to say in response.

Pro-Whitmer group broke Michigan campaign finance laws, Benson finds

Pro-Whitmer group broke Michigan campaign finance laws, Benson finds

February 8, 2019 | Riley Beggin

Build a Better Michigan and Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s campaign committee engaged in express advocacy, Democratic Sec. of State Jocelyn Benson announced Friday, and must pay pay a $37,500 fine.

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