Rick Pluta has been covering Michigan’s Capitol, government, and politics since 1987. His journalism background includes stints with UPI, The Elizabeth (NJ) Daily Journal, The (Pontiac, MI) Oakland Press, and WJR. He is also a lifelong public radio listener.

Rick was one of the first Michigan political reporters to write about “pay-to-play” fundraising, and the controversies surrounding recognition of same-sex relationships. He broke the news that Gov. John Engler was planning a huge juvenile justice overhaul that included adult-time-for-adult-crime sentencing, and has continued to report since then on the effects of that policy decision.

He co-hosts the weekly segment “It’s Just Politics” on Michigan Radio with Zoe Clark.

Rick is fascinated by the game of politics, and the grand plans and human foibles that go into policy-making. You will never find him ice-fishing.

Current and Former Detroit Lawmakers Challenge New District Maps

A group of current and former Detroit-area legislators say they’re filing a lawsuit to force the state’s redistricting commission to...

Whitmer on COVID-19: “Next 4 to 6 Weeks Are Going To Be Tough”

Gov. Gretchen Whitmer said Wednesday that she’s not expecting to issue new COVID-19 restrictions in 2022, but that’s not out...

Petition Effort to Boost Michigan Minimum Wage Moves Closer to Collecting Signatures

The initiative campaign to increase Michigan’s minimum wage took another step Tuesday toward putting a question on the 2022 ballot....

LGBTQ Rights Group, Catholic Church Allowed to File Briefs in Supreme Court Case

An LGBTQ-focused health clinic in Detroit and the Catholic church in Michigan have been given permission to weigh in on...

Legislature to Take Up Controversial Incentives Before Break

The Legislature begins its year-end stretch Tuesday, and at the top of its to-do list is a controversial business incentive...

News Organizations Sue Michigan Redistricting Commission

Three news organizations and the Michigan Press Association are suing the Michigan Independent Citizens Redistricting Commission, and they’re taking their...

Oxford Shooting Investigation in Hands of Oakland County Prosecutor, Nessel Says

Attorney General Dana Nessel expressed disappointment Tuesday that Oxford school officials turned down her offer to conduct an independent investigation...

Bills Would Allow Out-of-State Medical Workers to Help Relieve Shortage

Office of Sen. Curt VanderWall The Michigan Senate is expected to vote Tuesday on a bill to help relieve a...

Michigan House Adds Funds for School Resource Officers After Oxford High School Shooting

The state House voted Thursday to dramatically boost funding for police officers in schools. It was in response to Tuesday’s...

Oxford High School Shooting Renews Debate in Lansing Over Gun Control

At the state Capitol Wednesday, the House and the Senate began their sessions with a moment of silence for the...

Whitmer: New Mandates Not Needed If People Get Vaccinated

Governor Gretchen Whitmer said Wednesday that new statewide COVID-19 restrictions are not under consideration at the moment despite the state’s...

“Truth-in-Sentencing” Repeal Drive Plans Launch in Early 2022

A petition drive to repeal Michigan’s 1998 “truth-in-sentencing” law expects to begin signature gathering early next year. If the law...