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Posted on Wed, Aug 3, 2011 : 6:27 a.m.

3 incumbents prevail in Ann Arbor City Council primary with low voter turnout

By Ryan J. Stanton

(This story has been updated multiple times and now includes final counts in all races. Also, the total number of ballots cast has been corrected to note nearly 4,000 people voted.)

Ann Arbor City Council members Stephen Kunselman and Mike Anglin had targets on their backs heading into Tuesday's primary election.

Known for going against the grain at times and taking positions that conflict with the mainstream opinion on council, opposing political forces — including allies of Mayor John Hieftje and other council majority supporters — wanted them out of office.

But efforts to oust Kunselman, D-3rd Ward, and Anglin, D-5th Ward, came up short.

Now it appears the makeup of the City Council will remain unchanged for the next year after all three incumbents, including Stephen Rapundalo, D-2nd Ward, came out on top on Tuesday.


Stephen Rapundalo, left, celebrates his election victory Tuesday night with Mayor John Hieftje and other supporters at Arbor Brewing Co.

Ryan J. Stanton |

Anglin beat Democratic challenger Neal Elyakin 1,088 (66%) to 562 (34%). He goes on to compete against Republican Stuart Berry in November. However, Republicans rarely win council races in Ann Arbor, where all 11 council members right now are Democrats.

Kunselman beat two Democratic challengersIngrid Ault and Marwan Issa — with 637 votes (59%) compared to Ault's 389 (36%) and Issa's 55 (5%). He'll compete against Republican David Parker in November for a chance to serve another two-year term.

Rapundalo beat Democratic challenger Tim Hull 573 (57%) to 419 (42%). Rapundalo faces no opposition in November, though rumors are circulating that an independent candidate might run against him.

Council Members Sabra Briere, D-1st Ward, and Marcia Higgins, D-4th Ward, also are up for re-election this year. Both advanced unopposed on Tuesday and Briere currently faces no challengers in November. Higgins faces Republican Eric Scheie.

Of the nearly 4,000 ballots cast in Tuesday's primary, 205 were for Republicans; 100 people voted for Parker in the 3rd Ward, and 105 people voted for Berry in the 5th Ward.

In none of the wards did turnout top 10 percent. A total of 1,003 ballots were cast (6.4%) in the 2nd Ward where there are 15,611 registered voters; 1,188 ballots were cast (9.7%) in the 3rd Ward where there are 12,223 registered voters; and 1,766 ballots were cast (9.3%) in the 5th Ward where there are 18,963 registered voters.

Council majority supporters were backing Elyakin, Ault and Rapundalo in Tuesday's Democratic primary. All three held a joint post-election party at Arbor Brewing Co., where the mayor and several other political allies were in attendance.

That included Council Members Christopher Taylor, Tony Derezinski, Sandi Smith, Margie Teall and Higgins, as well as former Council Member Leigh Greden, who lost to Kunselman two years ago, and at least one Downtown Development Authority board member.

Kunselman celebrated victory across town at Dominick's, while Anglin was with Hull and others at the Wolverine Brewing Co. on West Stadium.

"The election turned out as I expected," Hieftje said. "I think if you try to look at the big picture and what's been going on with the economy and what's been going on with cities in this state, Ann Arbor has been doing reasonably well and people recognize that and they re-elected the incumbents."

Though his political allies — including some DDA board members — were backing Ault and Elyakin, Hieftje stressed he stayed neutral in the races.

Kunselman ran a campaign that was heavily critical of the DDA and its spending, a stance that has put him at odds with the mayor and other DDA board members.

His leading challenger, Ault, had political backing from a handful of DDA board members. Kunselman made it a point to criticize them for that after Tuesday's election.

"The DDA has been nothing more than a hotbed of political cronyism," he said, vowing to continue to hold the DDA accountable to taxpayers.

Kunselman said he thinks the DDA has been irresponsible with its spending on major capital projects. He specifically criticized the authority for showing more than $140 million in outstanding bond indebtedness in its last annual report while carrying no bond reserve.

"One of the first things I'll be proposing is an amendment to the DDA ordinance to require that the DDA carry the bond reserve for its debt," Kunselman said, adding he thinks the DDA should have a savings account funded at a level equal to 8 to 12 percent of its total debt.

Ault called Kunselman to congratulate him after the election results came in Tuesday night. Even though she lost, she said she enjoyed running.


Neal Elyakin, center, chats with Mayor John Hieftje at Arbor Brewing Co. after finding out he lost his primary race to 5th Ward incumbent Mike Anglin.

Ryan J. Stanton |

"I'm really glad I had the opportunity to share my views," she said. "I always went into this with the understanding that I was running against an incumbent. And if I came out of it with a higher exposure for Think Local First, the nonprofit I am the executive director for, all the better."

Ault acknowledged her differences with Kunselman.

"I'm hopeful Steve will do what's best for the community and make smart choices," she said. "I personally thought I had some differing opinions that might have moved our community forward at a greater pace, but the voters spoke and who am I to question that."

Elyakin offered similar comments about Anglin.

"Mike's a nice guy. I like him. I just have disagreements with things about him," he said, adding he wants to be able to work with Anglin on issues going forward. "Mike, if he prevails in November, will continue on council as my representative. I'll want to be able to work with Mike and the rest of the council on the things that I believe are important to the city."

Elyakin and Ault expressed strong support throughout their campaigns for the Fuller Road Station project that the mayor and other members of the council majority are pushing. Anglin and Kunselman have expressed doubts about the project in recent months.

Ryan J. Stanton covers government and politics for Reach him at or 734-623-2529. You also can follow him on Twitter or subscribe to's e-mail newsletters.



Thu, Aug 4, 2011 : 2:29 p.m.

Yup. If anybody should know all about cronyism, it's Kunselman. Two more years of posturing, self serving, grandstanding, to look forward to. Most unfortunate!


Thu, Aug 4, 2011 : 1:29 p.m.

I am a little surprised that many of our more conservative posters did not run for office. They seem to have all of the answers.


Thu, Aug 4, 2011 : 5:14 p.m.

And NO chance of being elected.


Wed, Aug 3, 2011 : 8:30 p.m.

I'm a proud liberal Democrat, but in the November election I will be voting for a conservative alternative for the City Council -- read Republican, in an attempt to bring some balance and sanity to this Council which just does not listen to the community. I know my vote will most likely be in vain but maybe others may see the light and also vote in protest against the ongoing abuse of most of these members who have tuned out the voice of the constituents that they represent.


Thu, Aug 4, 2011 : 12:01 p.m.

Many people felt the same way, when elections were held in April. Dems would vote for the person in their Ward that they felt could MANAGE the city regardless of political affiliation. People would vote Republican in April and Democrat in November.


Wed, Aug 3, 2011 : 9:16 p.m.

Good idea. I am a Democrat, as well, but are ALL the council members really true Democrats? And you are soooo right---they are largely tuned out to their constituents' voices. We desperately need a change of attitude on council.

Tom Luczak

Wed, Aug 3, 2011 : 7:24 p.m.

First of all, thank you to all the candidates for running. The system doesn't work without particpation. Thank you for all the candidate's earnest interest and effort. Congratulations to the winners. The Ann Arbor voting turnout was pathetic, as usual, but what do we reasonably expect from a one issue vote. Now the real reason I'm writing. I'm laughing because someone called Tom Whitaker a "Tea Party Republican" earlier in this forum. Now that's a stretch. Nothing could be further from the truth. Nonetheless, I take great glee in future encounters with Tom when I can remind him that he was once castigated as being a Tea Party Republican.


Wed, Aug 3, 2011 : 6:06 p.m.

Back where we started, until we go round again...

Vivienne Armentrout

Wed, Aug 3, 2011 : 4:30 p.m.

Thanks, Ryan, for the incisive reporting on this election. You did a great job of bringing out all the diverse opinions.


Wed, Aug 3, 2011 : 3:21 p.m.

There was your election folks. About 1200 or so people in a city of 114,000 decided it all for Ann Arbor. And now we, like the good sheep we are, can all now go back to grazing until it's time for us to be sheared again. Bahhhh. And remember: Voting In November is Easy!


Wed, Aug 3, 2011 : 2:49 p.m.

So who won elections for the DDA? Oh, that's right. Nevermind....


Wed, Aug 3, 2011 : 3:51 p.m.

Darn good idea. DDA members should be elected and allowed to spend the TIF funds as they see fit. The city can keep the parking revenues, but I think the council strong arms DDA to take funds to fix their bad ways.


Wed, Aug 3, 2011 : 2:48 p.m.

I have to say that I would be less likely to support Ms Ault's nonprofit than I was before the election. She gave it negative publicity. I don't trust her. She pulled a fast one by attacking Mr Kunselman in the debate in the last remarks when he had no chance to respond. She demonstrated a "win by attacking your opponent" strategy. She tried to mischaracterize Kunselman by saying he did not follow through on the ethics issue, when her supporters had been participating in the phone-ethics fiasco themselves. He followed through until the issue was resolved. In addition, he has shown his ethics by refusing to be a "me too" councilmember when it comes to these capital projects we can ill afford. Stick with the issues and be polite. We are neighbors and don't appreciate unfair strategies.


Thu, Aug 4, 2011 : 2:40 p.m.

Cmon, the "Poor Victem" defense again for his guy? He is is a grandstanding, spotlight lover. It's not about taking a firm stand on hard hitting issues, except for the adulation. He is all about Stephen Kunselman though, he is *REALLY* good at that, but that isn't necessarily what is good for Ann Arbor.

Jon Saalberg

Wed, Aug 3, 2011 : 2:40 p.m.

@Huron74: A 11 - 0 majority on the Council is irrelevant to my request that proof be given that demonstrates how Democrats have altered the city charter for their political gain. That Democrats occupy all Council positions is proof that Democrats have voted more than Republicans - nothing else. Also, your comment - "Ever since the VINE charter amendment moved city election from April and added them to the general election in November the council and mayoral races get thrown into the mixing bowl along with everything else on the ballot and people don't pay as much attention to them as they should." - does not specifically give any party an advantage - either party could vote less in an election, and in fact, since there are more Democrats, it would seem to discourage far more Democrats from voting than Republicans.

Joslyn at the U

Wed, Aug 3, 2011 : 2:27 p.m.

Wow you people keep electing these politicaly non sensical candidates...........(shakes head) you get what you ask for.I pray May your eyes open before the train crash. Excuse me while I stand a safe distance from the train tracks.


Wed, Aug 3, 2011 : 2:23 p.m.

Ann Arbor truly needs a more diverse city council. The city needs a balanced approach to solving problems. More people would run for office if the council meetings weren't so convoluted with garbage and real work happened more often rather than discussing the impact of non-historical looking fences .


Wed, Aug 3, 2011 : 2:21 p.m.

Regardless of who won and who lost, to me, this was the most telling bit of information in this report: About 2100 people voted, and except for one ward, turnout did not exceed 10 percent anywhere in the city. That is pathetic. It's pathetic at any time, but given the economic crises being faced at every level of government, it's shameful. I wonder how many of the people who post here voted. And how many just sit on their butts and wail and moan.

Ryan J. Stanton

Wed, Aug 3, 2011 : 4:59 p.m.

The 2,100 figure was a spreadsheet error. The story is now updated with the final numbers.


Wed, Aug 3, 2011 : 3:47 p.m.

Maybe I am missing something here. I added up the votes cast noted in the story and my total is 3723 votes cast in the wards with two or more candidates. Where is this 2100 people voted figure coming from? The article notes "2100+ votes cast in Tuesday's primary." Why not 3700+? What am I missing here? I agree the turnout is pathetic but what can you do? If more people were upset with council there would be more turnout. I always though voting should be mandatory.

Ryan J. Stanton

Wed, Aug 3, 2011 : 3:43 p.m.

I actually have final numbers and it turns out turnout did not top 10 percent in any of the wards. A total of 1,003 ballots were cast (6.4%) in the 2nd Ward where there are 15,611 registered voters; 1,188 ballots were cast (9.7%) in the 3rd Ward where there are 12,223 registered voters; and 1,766 ballots were cast (9.3%) in the 5th Ward where there are 18,963 registered voters.


Wed, Aug 3, 2011 : 2:24 p.m.

I voted.


Wed, Aug 3, 2011 : 2:10 p.m.

Congrads to Mr. Kunselman and Mr. Anglin. Mr. Kunselman's description of the DDA, "The DDA has been nothing more than a hotbed of political cronyism." fits well for the Ann Arbor ruling political class as a whole. Why single out just the DDA, Mr. Kunselman? At least they seem to be making a profit. What about the AATA? The mayor appointed this board as well. The AATA has embarked on a ridiculous plan to morph into a regional transportation authority (pending a $450 million county wide millage vote). When did the citizens of Ann Arbor ask to provide busing and trains for the whole county? How much money will be wasted on consultants, etc., on this pie in the sky, fantasy world in which the AATA board lives? Even their director gets paid more than the new city administrator. The connection between this new regional transportation authority and the proposed Fuller Station is so blatantly obvious yet seldom discussed publicly by city council. Why is that?

Tom Whitaker

Wed, Aug 3, 2011 : 1:44 p.m.

Despite his usual attempts to downplay anything negative, this result is a clear rebuke of the Mayor and Council Party agenda of spending on huge capital projects like the Fuller Park parking structure and "smart plans" for mega-growth---growth that simply isn't going to happen in our lifetimes. The public wants careful and responsible spending by our City as federal, state and local funds continue to dry up and the nation is staring down a possible double-dip recession. Both Kunselman and Anglin won against the Mayor's handpicked challengers (who he cowardly chose not to formally endorse), but the real news was the ability of a young, underfunded, unknown challenger to garner 42% of the vote against Rapundalo in the 2nd Ward. Winds of change are blowing and a smart politician would drop his personal ambitions for Ann Arbor to become the new Southeastern Michigan Mega-metropolis and start focusing on police, fire, streets, sewers and parks. We can't afford any more huge, unnecessary capital projects, built for the benefit of others.


Thu, Aug 4, 2011 : 12:23 a.m.

The Tim Hull vote was a pleasant surprise. He soundly beat Rapundalo in one precinct.


Wed, Aug 3, 2011 : 3:38 p.m.

If "the people" are so upset with council decisions, why didn't those who supported these projects get re-elected? The results seem to indicate most people are okay with council decisions, like Stephen points out. (I do not disagree that council is a runaway high speed train, I am just presuming the results indicate overall approval).

Stephen Landes

Wed, Aug 3, 2011 : 3:28 p.m.

Unfortunately there is no such thing as a moral victory. Nothing happened that will change the direction of the Mayor or City Council. Mr. Hull lost in the second ward and we are all losers because of that.


Wed, Aug 3, 2011 : 2:48 p.m.

To me, this is the absolutely PERFECT comment in that it reflects my thoughts precisely. Listen to the people of Ann Arbor, Council members! Most of us want our taxes to pay for safe streets, not overly ambitious, unnecessary projects that will put our city into debt for years and years and years.


Wed, Aug 3, 2011 : 2:36 p.m.

You articulated all the key elements demonstrated in this primary election. People are not happy with the focus on huge capital projects that are irresponsible in the current and foreseeable future economic climate. We are alarmed about those who ignore our other needs, the things that make life safe and good in Ann Arbor. Many of these capital projects tear interfere with those small businesses that make Ann Arbor the unique place it is, that give it character, and have the potential to turn it into another bland corporatized city. I'd love to see the Mayor replaced by someone with a more down-to-earth (Ann Arbor earth, that is) person. He is one of those bland corporatized kind of people. He doesn't get Ann Arbor and why it is loved.


Wed, Aug 3, 2011 : 1:43 p.m.

I find it revealing and ironic how many businesses the Issa family seems to own around town due to prevalence of Marwan Issa signs everywhere...versus a measly showing of only 55 votes.


Wed, Aug 3, 2011 : 5:44 p.m.

Naw, nothing else, just given the mass visibility of the signs, I would've expected a better result. There were alot of signs downtown and down Packard, etc.

Jeff Gaynor

Wed, Aug 3, 2011 : 2:52 p.m.

Marwan Issa admitted himself he did not run a good campaign - and by this showed he is not ready for public office - but he participated, and learned. No harm, no foul. Or are you insinuating something else?


Wed, Aug 3, 2011 : 1:39 p.m.

@saalberg For one having the party label style of nomination (which has outlived its purpose) moves all political activity into the hands of a small group of Democratic party insiders and small group of primary voters basically in charge of the selection process. Ever since the VINE charter amendment moved city election from April and added them to the general election in November the council and mayoral races get thrown into the mixing bowl along with everything else on the ballot and people don't pay as much attention to them as they should. Saalberg can argue "too bad; they're stupid then" and perhaps this is true. But it is what is. The fact that the Democratic party has gamed the system to its own benefit is undeniable. Saalberg wants "cites" for this? Okay here's one: 11 -Dems 0-anyone else. That good enough for you? Ann Arbor should go to an open non partisan system like nearly ever other city in Michigan and the rest of the country have. There's lots of good people here willing and able to serve but who aren't part of the Democrat/ Heiftje machine and so don't make the cut and never will.


Wed, Aug 3, 2011 : 1:35 p.m.

I would disagree with those indicating that having a single party is the cause of the problem. It is not the fact that the single party exists, it is the fact that keeping the same individuals in office provides for them to become more and more comfortable and less and less in touch with the people they were elected to represent. It would have been interesting to have something on the ballot regarding the wasteful spending and see if they public would have agreed. I suspect if the ballot included a vote on the art for the new courts building the decision would have been NO. People need to write and call the council and request time on the council agenda to question the council's decision regarding these budget items. The public can no longer allow the council to operate without representing the people. Attend the next council meeting and make yourselves heard!

Wolf's Bane

Wed, Aug 3, 2011 : 5:46 p.m.

I disagree with you.


Wed, Aug 3, 2011 : 3:33 p.m.

I have to disagree somewhat. You raise an interesting point that council may become more and more comfortable, but I am not sure you are correct that they are less in touch. Residents have a personal responsibility to know the candidates and can do so at least by reading media reports. In A2, with what I believe is a higher than average level of smarts, I think most people who vote do, should, know who they are voting for. Thus if a voting majority was not in favor of council decisions, they would not keep voting them in office. And you simply can't put every decision, like the court bldg art decision, on the ballot. Not sure if the city charter allows voter initiatives to reject such decisions but that would be the way for an upset electorate to address that issue. The reality seems to be that most people do not hold these decisions in a negative light. I think they are representing the people, if not people would be at the meetings.

Wolf's Bane

Wed, Aug 3, 2011 : 1:33 p.m.

As long as democrats have a firm control of city counsel, I'm fine with the outcome. I would add that it was a bit premature for Neal Elyakin to run gains Mike Anglin. Mike is in the middle of his work and well loved and respected. Bad move.

Mr Blue

Wed, Aug 3, 2011 : 1:53 p.m.

By virtue of Hieftje's hand picked candidates chosen to run against Anglin ever since he was first elected, the Mayor has made it known that he doesn't like Mike and will continue to manufacture candidates to run against him. Instead of working with Mike, Hieftje instead chooses to marginalize him on council and throw primary candidates OF HIS OWN PARTY at him.

Tony Dearing

Wed, Aug 3, 2011 : 1:24 p.m.

A comment has been temporarily removed while we verify information contained in it.


Wed, Aug 3, 2011 : 3:24 p.m.

Sounds like you guys got scooped.


Wed, Aug 3, 2011 : 1:18 p.m.

Oh no, I don't agree with this.........start the recalls, LOL.

Jon Saalberg

Wed, Aug 3, 2011 : 1:02 p.m.

@Diagenes: Please elucidate this claim - "The city charter was changed in order to favor the high level of Democrat voters." How, exactly, does the city charter "favor" Democrats? Please post wording that says as such, verbatim, from the charter. I'm sure all Ann Arborites would like to see this language. And how do Democrats "limit" political competition? Everyone has one vote and an equal chance to vote. If all Republicans who live in Ann Arbor voted, we might see a difference in our electoral outcomes. If our city has a Democratic majority, a logical thread from that is that Democrats will win most of the time. A low level of political participation affects all voters - I don't see how that can be considered a partisan issue. Also: one of the other things you cite - in particular, the bridge issue - was, I believe, an issue of federal funding, not city funding.


Thu, Aug 4, 2011 : 11:52 a.m.

Former Democrat City Councilman Dave DeVarti lead the effort to change city council election to coinside with the November general elections. November elections are partisan elections that favor Democrats. Elections used to be held in April. The April elections were focused on city issues and very competitive across the city. Since the move to November our politcal health has been reduced to a couple thousand people choosing leaders in an August primary dominated by Democrat activists.


Wed, Aug 3, 2011 : 3:24 p.m.

I would add that a city as fiscally healthy in A2, even in these tough economic times, should have created better (bigger) capital improvement accounts to keep things like bridge repair easier to fund. That is basic city administration which should be a bigger issue in elections, why the city is putting money into non essential programs rather than making sure essential services are in good repair. Before any new parking lots are built, or additions to city hall, that bridge should have been keep in good condition. I am not even sure if repairs have started yet, which might have been a good question for the incumbents during an election, and it going to be a real pain when football comes to town. Why did this bridge even reach the condition it is now in if these folks know how to do their jobs?


Wed, Aug 3, 2011 : 1:22 p.m.

Jon-The city has had money for years to fix the crumbling bridge. The first time they could have obtained a federal grant they did not fill out the paperwork in a timely manner for the grant. They though did secure it after a nice article in the paper chastised them for screwing up.

Roy Munson

Wed, Aug 3, 2011 : 1:01 p.m.

The People's Republic of Ann Arbor needs some checks and balances.


Thu, Aug 4, 2011 : 12:08 p.m.

Run for office.


Wed, Aug 3, 2011 : 9:25 p.m.

"The People's Republic of Ann Arbor?" Uh, Roy, Ann Arbor DOES have businesses. We don't buy our goods and services from the gubmint.

Wolf's Bane

Wed, Aug 3, 2011 : 5:49 p.m.

Trust me, Roy Munson, this is not a communist city. You have no idea how bad true communism is.


Wed, Aug 3, 2011 : 1:43 p.m.

with prejudice like that I'm sure you'll be first in line.


Wed, Aug 3, 2011 : 12:47 p.m.

Tuesday was a great example of how the Democrats limit political competition. Dems are only in favor of democracy when it serves there purpose. We used to have a very competitive political life in Ann Arbor, when we had City Council elections in April. The city charter was changed in order to favor the high level of Democrat voters. Now we have a system where only a couple thousand people bother to go to the polls and relect the same old crowd that cannot budget money to fix our bridges, spend $1000's on art instead of cops, and use regulations to run off developers that want to build in the city and add to the tax base.


Thu, Aug 4, 2011 : 12:07 p.m.

Who prevented other parties from having candidates in this election? Who is preventing GOP candidates from running in November. Just because you don't like the results...


Wed, Aug 3, 2011 : 3:17 p.m.

In elections where the majority of voters take issue with decisions made by an elected board, they turn out and vote for a candidate who promises change. The more outrageous council decisions are, the more likely the electorate will be stimulated and to vote. Thus we can assume that voters in A2 are in favor of all the decisions made by council, whether or not some prefer more money for police or fire than other programs on the council agenda. One interesting development here that raises the eyebrow is that Mr Kunselman, anti DDA, gets reelected but other pro DDA candidates remain and his intentions to limit DDA may have little support among council. Same with Mr Anglin. So voters in two wards may be a little irked at council decisions but overall it appears voters are wholly in favor of the policy decisions made by council. Whether we like it or not. The UM, or any large college like UM with a huge medical center is like a Fort Knox in your pocket. A guaranteed populace and high tenancy in homes. What it scary is what they do with the money make sure basic essential services are properly funded or go overboard with stuff like art.


Wed, Aug 3, 2011 : 12:36 p.m.

I never knew until this article how democratic A2 is. When I travel to other areas, and tell people how Detroit elections are decided by the democratic primary; they are astonished. Listening to talk radio, I understand toledo is nearly as bad, but I never knew this was the case with ann arbor. To me, that's scary. I would also liike to point out, that if elections were decided in republican primaries; I would be equally astonished. No party will do the will of their constituents with that kind of domination.


Wed, Aug 3, 2011 : 1:51 p.m.

This election isn't decided. There will be an election in November. You have the right to vote in that election. You also have the right to encourage others to vote. This is basic civics. Blindly complaining is not.


Wed, Aug 3, 2011 : 1:42 p.m.

mistake #1, listening to talk radio...

Les Gov

Wed, Aug 3, 2011 : 12:29 p.m.

Voters have spoken! No cops. No Firefighters. New Government Admin employees are to receive large pay increase. NO money spent on local artists. Art money from taxes to be sent out of country. This is what the voters want based on this election.

Wolf's Bane

Wed, Aug 3, 2011 : 5:48 p.m.

I speak 357.

Stephen Landes

Wed, Aug 3, 2011 : 3:23 p.m.

The comments are not illogical -- they are an accurate assessment of the situation. If voters don't like how the city is being run AND if they are upset enough about those feelings then they will get out and vote. The turnout was terrible and the result predictable: citizens obviously either like the way the City is being run or they aren't upset enough to do anything about it. We get what we vote for.


Wed, Aug 3, 2011 : 2:21 p.m.

Huh? This is illogical.

Smart Logic

Wed, Aug 3, 2011 : 1:26 p.m.

Hooray Democrats!

Andrew Smith

Wed, Aug 3, 2011 : 12:22 p.m.

All ten city council seats and the mayor are from the same political party - there is no opposition, no meaningful dialogue, no give-and-take: a one-part government. From history, we can learn about one-party governments: Stalin's Soviet Union, Mao's China, Castro's Cuba, etc. Does Ann Arbor really want to be a one-party state? Where's the diversity?


Thu, Aug 4, 2011 : 12:05 p.m.

"Stalin's Soviet Union, Mao's China, Castro's Cuba, etc" Michigan's governor, senate and house? Ann arbor is a city, not a state, FYI.

Mr. Me

Wed, Aug 3, 2011 : 1:52 p.m.

There are Republicans running. If you think the council needs one, vote for the one in your ward. If you don't live in one of those wards, maybe you should have run yourself. Everybody likes to complain about the politicians, but we have a citizen democracy so you have the right to get elected and fix it yourself.

Wolf's Bane

Wed, Aug 3, 2011 : 1:32 p.m.

I think you're being obtuse. Ann Arbor has traditionally always been democratic because, in part, of the highly educated citizens that call Ann Arbor home. Factor in the largest employer, University of Michigan, and you have the ideal recipe for a progressive and liberal city. Don't like it? Leave.

John A2

Wed, Aug 3, 2011 : 12:13 p.m.

There was an old lady who swallowed a fly; I don't now why she swallowed the fly, perhaps she will die.


Wed, Aug 3, 2011 : 12:11 p.m.

We complain about the poor decissions our elected officials make, but we still vote for them. John Dingell must be happy this morning. He knows that AA will support his tax and spend ideas again. At what point will we learn?


Wed, Aug 3, 2011 : 12:01 p.m.

Not happy that Rapundalo won again. We deserve a change.


Wed, Aug 3, 2011 : 4:54 p.m.

@A2_Wookie: I did vote. Number 48 at 4pm, Thurston School. Guess the majority of people dono't really care in Ann Arbor. Sigh.

Wolf's Bane

Wed, Aug 3, 2011 : 1:29 p.m.

Then get out and vote...!


Wed, Aug 3, 2011 : 11:48 a.m.

"all 11 council members right now are Democrats." Thank goodness we have a ruling class that knows more than we do, I feel blessed! :)


Thu, Aug 4, 2011 : 12:02 p.m.

Which of them claimed to "know more than you"?

Stephen Landes

Wed, Aug 3, 2011 : 3:20 p.m.

Joslyn, Unfortunately Forever27 actually seems to believe those statements. Probably the reason our city government is as screwed up as it is.

Joslyn at the U

Wed, Aug 3, 2011 : 2:36 p.m.

I do hope that is sarcasm lol


Wed, Aug 3, 2011 : 1:38 p.m.

You're creating a strawman argument. It's a local government and partisan politics have no place in local governments, where the "rubber meets the road" for public policy. When you focus soley on which party a candidate is from you ignore the real job of actually maintaining a city and its infrastructure. Not to mention the fact that most cities and towns have a fairly homogenous population in regards to political ideology.