By JUSTINE McGUIRE
Capital News Service
LANSING – If Michigan had an elected insurance commissioner rather than one appointed by the governor, consumers would benefit from more favorable policies and insurance rates, Sen. Virgil Smith, D-Detroit, said. Smith proposed a constitutional amendment to elect the insurance commissioner and said his research found that states that elect their commissioners tend to have “more progressive laws on the books.”
They are California, Kansas, Delaware, Georgia, Louisiana, Mississippi, Montana, North Carolina, North Dakota, Washington and Oklahoma. Smith pointed out that they’re not all-blue or all-red states politically. The constitution and current law require most Cabinet department heads to be appointed by the governor or a state commission. Only the secretary of state and attorney general are elected.