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Tim Skubick: Duggan, Obama get plenty of face time

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LANSING, Mich. (WJBK) -

During his quickie three hour in and out sojourn to East Lansing last Friday, President Barack Obama joked with the decidedly Spartan crowd that they were "greedy" given the Rose Bowl football win and the success of the B-Ball team, too.  (Little did he know they'd lose to the Badgers.)

But if you want to talk about greed, say hello to Detroit's new Mayor Mike Duggan who has had more face time with the President than the First Lady.

He met with the President at the White House in a group setting earlier this winter; then he had lunch with Vice President Joe Biden; then he dined with the President himself last Friday and will jump on a plane to D.C. on Thursday for yet another group encounter with the country's main man.

"He's a healthy eater," the not so healthy eater Mr. Duggan appraised the press corps after he scarfed up some salmon and rice with Mr.  Obama. He sheepishly admitted, however, he absconded with two cookies to get his sugar fix..  (Your tax dollars hard at work.)

The affable Mr.Duggan, who many believe is turning out to be everything that former aloof Mayor Dave Bing was not, knows the art of the "ask." Hence he left money off the luncheon menu.

"I did not ask for money,"  but he's looking for opportunities for the President to help the bankrupt city.  He's smart not to ask because Mr. Biden has already said there won't be any "bail-out" of the Motor City.  The V.P. is smart, too.  He knows a GOP Congress would never do that for the heavily Democratic city.

"It's about jobs," Mr. Duggan says as he hopes for a boost from Mr. Obama's administration.

The president also inquired about the mayor's relationship with the Gov. Snyder appointed Emergency Manager Kevin Orr.  Duggan entered the cone of silence on that one but he does say the two are getting along, having disagreements (no-duh) but working to get this job done.

Somewhere up there Duggan's mentor, former Wayne County executive Ed McNamara, must be over-joyed and proud watching his protégé working all the political levers even if it means forgoing a meal of meat and potatoes in order to dine on salmon and rice with the leader of the free world.

Hey.  You do what you gotta do in this biz.

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