Ann Arbor Area Community News
With the Democratic hegemony of Ann Arbor’s City Council complete, people have started to discuss alternative ways of choosing Councilmembers. Ann Arbor News columnist Geoff Larcom suggests non-partisan Council elections:
My concern lies with a system that seems to shut out candidates with the wrong party label while Dems run unopposed in other wards.
Blogger (and County Clerk) Larry Kestenbaum has weighed in with an impressive account of Ann Arbor’s Council-picking mechanisms over the past 30 years, and some arguments against a non-partisan system and other popular recommendations:
The problem with the talent pool for city council is that few people are really interested in serving. City council, partisan or not, is rightly seen as being Real Life Politics, under the hot lights of media scrutiny and the pressures of interest group lobbying. It is a myth that a change to nonpartisan elections would suddenly unleash a flood of highly qualified candidates. If political parties no longer had the incentive or responsibility to recruit candidates, we might well end up with fewer candidates instead of more.
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