After ‘full’ 2016, Michigan Attorney General Bill Schuette eyes governorship

Michigan Attorney General Bill Schuette addresses a news conference, Tuesday, Dec. 20, 2016 in Flint, Mich., where he charged two former State of Michigan Emergency Managers, Darnell Earley and Gerald Ambrose, with multiple 20-year felonies for their failure to protect the citizens of Flint from health hazards cased by contaminated drinking water. Schuette also charged Earley, Ambrose and Flint city employees Howard Croft and Daugherty Johnson with felony counts of false pretenses and conspiracy to commit false pretenses in the issuance of bonds to pay for a portion of the water project that led to the crisis. (AP Photo/Carlos Osorio)

LANSING, Mich. (AP) — The launch of Attorney General Bill Schuette’s 2018 gubernatorial campaign may not be imminent, but the Republican clearly is preparing to run as he enters the final two years of a tenure that most recently has been dominated by his criminal investigation of Flint’s water crisis.

Schuette told The Associated Press recently he intends to be “part of the conversation” about Michigan’s next generation of leadership.

He’s focused on two “big” issues — the economy and education — and warns against returning to Democratic leadership. He says state taxes should be lower.

Schuette’s probe of how Flint’s tap water became contaminated with lead has led to charges against 13 current or former government officials. The investigation isn’t over, though Schuette says “we’re far closer to the end than the beginning.”

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