Jennifer Granholm & Tom Coburn

Consider Jennifer Granholm and Tom Coburn for a robust debate on the most talked about political issues of the day.

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Jennifer Granholm headshot

Jennifer Granholm

  • 47th Governor of Michigan (2002-2011)
  • Senior Political Commentator, CNN
  • Distinguished Practitioner of Law and Public Policy at the UC Berkeley
  • Bestselling Author of "A Governor's Story: The Fight for Jobs and America's Economic Future"

Jennifer M. Granholm is a former two-term governor and former attorney general of Michigan. She currently serves as the co-chair of Priorities USA Action and is the Director of The American Jobs Project at UC Berkeley, where she also teaches courses in law and public policy.

After leaving office, Granholm hosted Current TV’s national political analysis show The War Room with Jennifer Granholm and co-authored the Washington Post political bestseller, A Governor’s Story: The Fight for Jobs and America’s Economic Future. Today, Granholm advocates for a national commitment to advanced manufacturing, worker training, and clean energy.

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Tom Coburn headshot

Tom Coburn

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  • U.S. Senator from Oklahoma (2005-2015)
  • U.S. Representative from Oklahoma (1995-2001)
  • Physician
  • Guardian Against Washington Spending

Dr. Coburn challenges the broken partisan culture of Washington. When audiences hear Dr. Coburn speak, they hear what The Week calls "authentic, adult conservatism."  Coburn serves as the antidote to a high-tension political environment, with level-headed, thoughtful and practical solutions to reduce wasteful Washington spending, increase accountability and transparency for all taxpayers, restore Constitutional government, and make healthcare more affordable and accessible for all Americans.  Dr. Tom Coburn is a medical doctor and retired member of Congress, who represented the state of Oklahoma in both the U.S. House of Representatives and Senate. Described by newspapers as a budget hawk, he established himself as "a statesman willing to reach across the aisle to find solutions to the nation's budget woes" (Associated Press) and as a man who is "thoughtful and willing to seek solutions to big problems" (Politico).

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Biography

Jennifer Granholm's Biography

Former two-term governor of Michigan Jennifer M. Granholm, who is credited with leading Michigan though a period of unprecedented economic challenge and change, is an authority on leadership; politics; economic diversification; clean energy policy; advanced manufacturing; and industrial clusters.

Granholm became the first woman to be elected as governor of Michigan in 2002, and in 2006 she was re-elected with the largest number of votes ever cast for governor in the state. Due to the meltdown in the auto industry and the global shift in manufacturing jobs, Michigan had the toughest economy in the nation and Granholm worked relentlessly to diversify, add new jobs and add emerging sectors, such as clean energy, to Michigan’s economic portfolio. As a result of her leadership, Michigan led the country in the improvement of job market conditions between 2009 and 2010, according to the Gallup Job Creation Index

As governor, Granholm pioneered clean energy policies, working with business and labor, Republicans and Democrats to create new economic opportunities and jobs in Michigan. She led an aggressive strategy to make Michigan the hub of clean-energy development in North America by developing entire supply chains in Michigan, fostering critical partnerships between industry, government and researchers and by creating economic incentives that made Michigan the place to locate. Granholm’s plan included specific clustering strategies targeted at battery manufacturing, bio-energy, solar, and wind power.

In addition to diversifying Michigan's economy, Granholm focused on creating jobs, attracting international investment, improving education, and training Michigan’s workers to promote the state’s long-term economic health. She pushed Michigan to double the number of college graduates and signed into law a college prep curriculum for every high school student in Michigan, in addition to some of the toughest turnaround requirements for low-performing schools in the nation. In 2007, she launched the No Worker Left Behind program, which gave unemployed and under-employed citizens the opportunity to attend community college or technical school and receive training for high-demand jobs by offering state-paid tuition to Michigan’s displaced adults.

Prior to her tenure as Governor, Granholm served as Michigan’s attorney general, from 1998-2002. After her last term as Governor, Granholm began teaching courses in law and public policy at UC Berkeley, where she continues to serve as faculty.  In addition, Granholm is a senior research fellow at the Berkeley Energy and Climate Institute, a project scientist at the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, a senior advisor to Correct the Record, and an ABC News contributor. She is also co-author of the political bestseller, A Governor’s Story: The Fight for Jobs and America’s Economic Future and an avid supporter of Hillary Clinton’s 2016 presidential campaign, where she is a senior partner on energy policy.

Granholm is an honors graduate of UC Berkeley and Harvard Law School. She and her husband have three children.

Tom Coburn's Biography

Described by newspapers as a budget hawk, junior Senator from Oklahoma and medical doctor Tom A. Coburn led the fight to reduce wasteful Washington spending, increase accountability and transparency for all taxpayers, restore Constitutional government, and make healthcare more affordable and accessible for all Americans.

During his tenure he also fought for the sanctity of life and private property rights. Sen. Coburn successfully challenged the broken culture of Washington; offering more amendments than any other senator to end waste and protect liberties.

From 1995-2001, Dr. Coburn represented Oklahoma's 2nd Congressional District in the U.S. House of Representatives, and was the first Republican to hold that seat for consecutive terms. He played a central role in Medicare and healthcare debates. After a short time in the House, Dr. Coburn kept his word to serve no more than six years and returned full-time to his medical practice in Muskogee, Oklahoma.

From 1970-78, Dr. Coburn was the manufacturing manager at the Ophthalmic Division of Coburn Optical Industries in Colonial Heights, Virginia, growing the division from 13 employees to more than 350 and capturing 35% of the U.S. market. After the family business was sold, Coburn returned to school to become a physician, attending the University of Oklahoma’s Medical School and graduating with his M.D. Dr. Coburn returned to Muskogee in 1983 to practice family medicine, allergy, and obstetrics. Dr. Coburn has personally delivered more than 4,000 babies.

Dr. Coburn and his wife Carolyn have three children and seven grandchildren.