Engler asks Schuette to pull name from endorsement list

Editor's note: Vanguard President and CEO TJ Bucholz comments on John Engler distancing himself from Bill Schuette's gubernatorial campaign.

Attorney General Bill Schuette has removed John Engler’s name from a list of endorsements on his gubernatorial campaign website at the request of the Republican former governor who took over this week as Michigan State University’s interim president.

Engler “can’t be involved” in election-year politics as he helps MSU navigate continued fallout from the Larry Nassar sexual abuse scandal, spokesman John Truscott said Wednesday.

Schuette’s office is investigating the university’s handling of complaints against Nassar, a former university and USA Gymnastics doctor accused of assaulting more than 200 women and girls. The attorney general announced on Jan. 27 his “ongoing investigation.”

TJ Bucholz, a Democratic strategist who worked as a communications director for the Michigan Department of Education under Engler, said it makes sense for the former governor to distance himself from Schuette’s campaign to reduce any questions over political motives.

“John Engler is not a wall flower, and neither is Bill Schuette,” Bucholz said. “I think the public line on that is probably accurate, but I also think there’s probably a degree of animosity (over the campus raid) as well.”

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