Political actions of husband could jeopardize Hertel’s MDHHS director chances

Elizabeth Hertel will know this week if she is the new director of the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services, but political actions by her husband could jeopardize those chances.

"I think my wife deserves the appointment and deserves to be confirmed because she's the best person for the job," said Sen.Curtis Hertel Jr.

But political actions taken by the Democratic senator could get in the way of his wife’s confirmation.

Last week, he threatened to prevent Republicans from getting their new laws enacted right away.

Curtis Hertel said the couple keeps their jobs separate.

Elizabeth and Curtis Hertel

"If you are saying that I should do my job differently because of my wife's appointment, that can't happen," he said. "I can't make decisions soon about how I behave for the people of Michigan and the people that sent me here based on some threat that they could have on that."

Some Republicans also don’t support Elizabeth Hertel for the role, partially because she won’t admit that the department made some mistakes in regards to COVID-19.

"There's been so many decisions that didn't make sense, but there's not one single altering decision that Elizabeth Hertel came up with that she would change," Sen. Jim Runestad said.

Mike Shirkey has until Tuesday to decide if her nomination will be blocked.