At Blogging For Michigan, we are always working to craft a positive, productive, and progressive message for Michigan’s future. When we first heard about Progress Michigan, we rejoiced! An organization dedicated to a clear, unified progressive message in Michigan? It’s like Heaven, in the form of a non-profit organization.

Blogging For Michigan is an experiment in bottom-up messaging. When we started BFM, we were focused on demonstrating the success of Governor Granholm’s plan for the Next Michigan, and revealing the obstructionist nature of the Senate Republicans. Since then, we’ve brought new progressives online, to discuss issues in their areas of expertise. Pastor John talks to us each week about why Christianity is a progressive faith, and why it’s important to Michigan policy. Greenville businessman Mike Huckleberry blogs on how Michigan jobs are created through progressive policies such as renewable energy and universal health care. These are people who have never blogged before, but can connect with specific audiences who may otherwise feel that progressives have no message for them.

Does bottom-up messaging make a difference? Just ask Senate Republican leader Mike Bishop, who briefly shut down Senate access to our site, on the basis that we said ‘bad things’ about him. But despite Bishop’s obvious belief in the vast power of blogs, we know that it takes more than just blogging to communicate our values.

Effective messaging requires reaching out to new people, building alliances, and putting our values into action. Our first attempt with this was BFM Troop Care; a program that created partnerships between the online community, and disparate offline groups such as organized labor, business managers, churches, home realtor associations, and even a board of commissioners in a primarily Republican county. Troop Care showed the people of Michigan that supporting our troops and veterans is a progressive value.

If a small blog like BFM can pull off a program like Troop Care, just imagine what the progressive blogosphere can do with allies like Progress Michigan!

Welcome to the fray Progress Michigan! BFM has your back.