Associated Press

Governor Gretchen Whitmer portrait

Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer is backing Joe Biden for president days before the state's Democratic primary. Whitmer's endorsement gives the former vice president another boost after his Super Tuesday success. Whitmer had not planned to endorse a candidate but told The Associated Press on Thursday that Biden "showed up for the people of Michigan" when they needed him. Whitmer cites Biden's work with President Barack Obama to add health coverage for millions of people and to rescue from financial ruin two of the Detroit Three automakers, General Motors and Chrysler.

Michelle Obama photo
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Former first lady Michelle Obama plans to host a rally in Detroit later this month for a nonpartisan, nonprofit voter advocacy organization she co-chairs. When We All Vote announced Wednesday that Obama is scheduled to headline the free, ticketed event March 27 at University of Detroit Mercy. It's open to the organization's volunteers and partners, as well as educators, college students and high school students who are eligible to vote. Obama and others launched When We All Vote in 2018 to boost voting.

Toyota logo
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Toyota is adding 1.2 million vehicles to a major recall in the U.S. to fix possible fuel pump failures that can cause engines to stall. The company said Wednesday that the added vehicles bring the total to 1.8 million. In January Toyota recalled nearly 700,000 vehicles in the U.S. for the same problems. The company said Wednesday that about 118,000 vehicles in the January recall shouldn't have been included. Engine stalling can increase the risk of a crash, although the company wouldn't say if there have been any.

Photo of Doctors
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A federal judge has invalidated Michigan's Medicaid work requirements, weeks after a U.S. appeals court affirmed his decision to strike down similar rules elsewhere. The short order came from U.S. District Judge James Boasberg in Washington, D.C. on Wednesday. He earlier invalidated Arkansas' requirement that low-income people work for government-provided health insurance, dealing a blow to the Trump administration's efforts to remake Medicaid. Four Michigan residents sued the federal government in November, with assistance from advocacy groups. Democratic Gov.

Ice fishing shanty photo

Ice conditions on Michigan lakes and other waterways may force the early removal of fishing shanties. Michigan's Department of Natural Resources says all shanties must be removed once ice no longer can safely support them. DNR Law Enforcement Division Lt. Jason Wicklund says "it's the angler's responsibility to safely remove their shanty before it falls through the ice." Repeated thawing and refreezing of ice weakens its integrity, decreasing its ability to support additional weight of people, snowmobiles, off-road vehicles and shanties.


 Police say a fisherman fell through thin ice and likely drowned in Tawas Bay in the northern Lower Peninsula. Walker Whitford drove his all-terrain vehicle on the bay, fell through ice and didn't survive Saturday. State police say the ice was only an inch thick in that spot. Reports say that, family members were concerned when Whitford didn't return home. The Department of Natural Resources has warned that fishing shanties in some areas might have to be removed earlier than usual because of ice conditions. 

Jocelyn Benson photo
Patrick Center / WGVU

More than 6,000 people have applied to serve on Michigan's new commission that will draw districts for seats in Congress and the state Legislature. Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson said nearly half of the applications have been processed. Her department is now accepting public comments on a method to identify 200 semifinalists. Ultimately 13 commissioners will be randomly selected: four affiliated with the Republican Party, four affiliated with the Democratic Party and five with no affiliation.

University of Michigan seal

The University of Michigan says it has received more than 100 "unique complaints" about a late physician accused of sexual abuse by former patients, including athletes who encountered him as a team doctor. In a statement Friday, a university spokesman urged others to contact the university. The university announced last week that it was investigating abuse allegations against Dr. Robert E. Anderson by five former patients.

Chemical barrels containing PFAS

A Michigan panel has endorsed drinking water standards designed to reduce exposure to a group of nonstick, water-resistant chemicals. The proposed rules would apply to seven compounds in a broad category known as PFAS. The substances are used in many household and industrial products, from food wrappings to clothing and firefighting foam. The limits won approval Thursday from a stakeholder committee established in 2018 to review draft environmental regulations.

Novel coronavirus

Gov. Gretchen Whitmer on Friday urged residents to follow simple steps to help limit the spread of a new type of virus that has not been confirmed in Michigan but could be eventually.

People should wash their hands, not touch their face, replace handshakes with elbow or fist bumps and cover their mouth when coughing or sneezing, she said.

“The main goal of these efforts is to help slow the spread of the virus,” Whitmer said. “I urge all Michiganders to take these recommendations very seriously and share this information with their friends, family and co-workers.”