Arbor Update

Ann Arbor Area Community News

Democratic Party Candidate Forum, July 8

7. July 2006 • Juliew
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10:00 a.m. to 12 noon
Courthouse Square (corner of Huron St. and Fourth Ave.)

This is the regular July meeting of the City Democrats, but the agenda is of particular interest to all Ann Arbor voters as this may be one of the few times you will be able to see many of these candidates.

Come hear the views of candidates in contested August Democratic Party primaries for city council, mayor, county commission (Ann Arbor seats), and state representative ( 52nd 53rd District). The forum will be moderated by former US Rep. Lynn Rivers. Parking is available for free 3 blocks from Courthouse Square at the Ann/Ashley structure or for a fee next door at the Washington St. structure.

  1. 53rd District, not 52nd. 52nd seems to include parts of northern Ann Arbor, plus Dexter, Lodi, etc.

       —David Boyle    Jul. 7 '06 - 07:03PM    #
  2. Here is the corrected announcement:

    Ann Arbor City Democratic Party

    What: Candidate Forum (July Monthly Meeting)

    When: Saturday July 8, from 10:00 a.m. to 12 noon

    Where: Courthouse Square (corner of Huron St.< /st1:address> and Fourth Ave.)

    Come hear the views of candidates in contested August Democratic Party primaries for city council, mayor, county commission (Ann Arbor seats), and state representative (53rd District). The forum will be moderated by former US Rep. Lynn Rivers. Parking is available for free 3 blocks from Courthouse Square at the Ann/Ashley structure or for a fee next door at the Washington St. structure.

    Upcoming meetings:

    * – Unity Breakfast Meeting: Saturday August 12 Ann Arbor Community Center (10:00 a.m. – 12:00 noon)

    * – Labor Day Picnic: September 4th (time/location TBD)

    * – Regular monthly meetings (10:00 a.m. – 12 noon): Sept. 9, Oct. 14, Nov. 11 and Dec. 9 (locations TBD)

    To receive updates on city party events contact us at or visit

    This message has been sent by Tim Colenback, Vice Chair for Organization on behalf of city party chair Susan Greenberg.

       —Tim Colenback    Jul. 7 '06 - 07:32PM    #
  3. That’s what I get for using text from the original e-mail. Corrected above.

       —Juliew    Jul. 7 '06 - 07:36PM    #
  4. Funny how they don’t give anyone transit directions. It’s like they aren’t even trying. Come on, Dems!

       —Brandon    Jul. 7 '06 - 10:16PM    #
  5. Transit directions to the center of town? From where? Brandon, are you geographically-challenged?

       —David Cahill    Jul. 7 '06 - 11:34PM    #
  6. No, I’m not, but it’s rather silly that drivers apparently are in the minds of the Democratic organizers and need extra help finding parking. It also implies an assumption (and thus encouragement) of automobile use… they could have said something like “2 blocks north of the Blake Transit Center” or something as well, you know, just to put that option in folks’ minds. A minor point, but it just seems rather par for the course.

       —Brandon    Jul. 7 '06 - 11:51PM    #
  7. I haven’t heard anything more nonsensical all day.

       —David Cahill    Jul. 8 '06 - 01:41AM    #
  8. Cahill, it’s really a rather simple (and minor) point (that does not deserve this many dang posts). As a lawyer (apparently), I think you can follow the logic:

    1. Special parking directions/distances from venue were given to drivers.
    2. No directions/tips were given for reaching the venue via other modes (distance/dir from transit center? bike parking?).
    3. The implication: we assume you’ll all be driving here and we don’t want to even nudge you to do otherwise (free parking, hooray!)
    4. This seems rather non-”progressive”, if you ask me. What’s left out can say as much as what’s included.

    You dig? Lord.

       —Brandon    Jul. 8 '06 - 05:44AM    #
  9. Or… there could be no directions, thus eliminating either problem :)

       —paul    Jul. 8 '06 - 06:31AM    #
  10. Can anyone who made it to the forum give us any quick highlights (if there were any)?

       —Mr Oy    Jul. 8 '06 - 10:55PM    #
  11. Here’s some, as I recall:

    One of the most inspirational speakers was Audrey Jackson, running for Wash C. Commissioner, and speaking about homeless and jobless people being left out the equation too often.
    —As for “urban planning” stuff: there was a merciful lack of it (at least compared to what is on this website), but much of what there was was not the “Kill Cahill” rant we hear around here, but sort of the opposite. That is, there seemed to be a majority of candidates supporting AA people voting in a referendum, a la CARD, about that $40 million bond thing. (The C. Council incumbents were usually more like, “I could support a popular vote, but we CC people can handle it ourselves.” ...I think Wendy Woods was more solidly for the referendum though.) 5th Ward challenger Sonia Schmerl seemed the most adamantly in favor of the referendum, and did not seem happy about the $40 million bond at all.
    —One guy, Rich Ankli?, also running against 5th Ward incumbent Chris Easthope, was a comic genius of sorts, talking about all sorts of things including his life as a male nurse and his love of jet plane rides. He provided some needed comic relief.
    —As for Lynn Rivers’ “What should be supported and un-negotiable for the Democratic Party at federal and local levels?” question to everybody, the clear favorite was “universal health care”, though “end the Iraq war” and “fiscal responsibility” got some mentions too.
    —That’s all for now. Others can give their own additions or versions.
       —David Boyle    Jul. 8 '06 - 11:34PM    #
  12. All right, here’s more from the campaign literature on the tables there:
    —Richard Ankli (5th Ward): “My last dog was a Doberman/Shepherd mix. ...She never barked. I think she was a Buddhist.”
    —Alice Ralph (3rd Ward): “3 Things About Alice Ralph: [3]...Worms eat her garbage.”
    —Christina Montague (Wash. C. Comm., Dist. 8): “CONVICTION: ...She will succeed because of her positive attitude, strong work ethic, her belief in the goodness of people and her faith in God.”
    —Ron Suarez (1st Ward): “Supporting home-grown artists to maintain our cultural diversity.”
    —Leigh Greden (53rd Dist. Rep.): “4 E’s” (Education, Environment, Economy, Equality). (Note: this is not wholly unlike what I myself have been writing about on Daily Kos, suggesting a “Liberty, Security, Opportunity” Democrat framework that sort of post-9/11 updates Bill Clinton’s “Opportunity, Responsibility, Community” triad of slogans)
    —Alice Ralph again: “3 Things Alice Will Do: [1]...Alice will work toward a livable and lovable Ann Arbor.”
    —and, Barbara Levin Bergman (Wash. C. Comm., incumbent, Dist. 8): “Barbara Levin Bergman: Navigating the Issues” (with photo of her in a kayak, presumably on the Huron)
    —Share your own if you like.

       —David Boyle    Jul. 9 '06 - 12:11AM    #
  13. I haven’t heard anything more nonsensical all day.

    Unequivocal proof that not even Cahill pays attention when Cahill speaks.

       —Jeff Dean    Jul. 9 '06 - 12:31AM    #
  14. Did all of the City Council incumbents who are seeking reelection show up?

       —Mr Oy    Jul. 9 '06 - 12:37AM    #
  15. ...Let’s see now: Woods, Easthope, Roberts, Greden, I saw at the big table. Sorry if am forgetting any AACC members. (Others were in audience)

       —David Boyle    Jul. 9 '06 - 01:05AM    #
  16. It’s good to know that I’m in the mainstream of Dem opinion on the bond. 8-)

       —David Cahill    Jul. 9 '06 - 02:12AM    #
  17. These seats will all be won by Democrats. The only question is, which Democrats?

    If you want to take part in the primary, the deadline to be registered is tomorrow, Monday, July 10. If you’re not registered, or if you’re moved and haven’t updated your registration address yet, take notice! You need to go visit your city or township clerk’s office, or any Secretary of State branch office.

       —Larry Kestenbaum    Jul. 9 '06 - 07:36PM    #
  18. Larry, when is the final deadline for absentee ballot requests?

       —jeph    Jul. 9 '06 - 10:05PM    #
  19. You can get a regular (non-emergency) absentee ballot right up to the Saturday before the election, but if you’re voting by mail from out of town, better get started ASAP to allow for snailmail lag.

    The ballots are already printed, and previously requested absentee ballots have gone out already.

       —Larry Kestenbaum    Jul. 10 '06 - 02:20AM    #
  20. NOTE:
    The League of Women Voters is sponsoring a Candidates Forum tomorrow (Monday, July 10, from 7:00 to 9:00pm) at the Ann Arbor Community Television Studios (425 S. Main, Suite LL114 Edison Center, corner William and Main). Call (734) 769-7422 to reserve a seat in the audience.

    It will be televised live on CTN Monday night from 7:00 to 9:00 pm and will also be replayed several times.

       —Juliew    Jul. 10 '06 - 02:38AM    #
  21. We recorded video of the candidates forum that I will be posting and I will provide a link here when it’s ready.

       —Ron Suarez    Jul. 10 '06 - 03:28AM    #
  22. Thanks Ron, nice to see you yesterday. (Sorry to hear about the Mafia problems with New York City cab unions etc. ...) —How is the struggle for “Net Neutrality” re the Internet going?

       —David Boyle    Jul. 10 '06 - 03:56AM    #
  23. Did anyone else watch the LWV broadcast of the candidates forum last night? Is it just me, or do Ankli and Roberts seem completely clueless? I’m not sure they were even listening to the questions.

       —jbailey    Jul. 11 '06 - 10:36PM    #
  24. jbailey, Ankli was unabashed about his revelation that he hadn’t heard of this report that the question was about (Calthorpe) and that he’d just have to pass on the question. I don’t think anyone else had anything like a similar moment.

       —HD    Jul. 11 '06 - 11:30PM    #
  25. These are NEW, not replays:

    1st Ward, LIVE, 7:00pm Tuesday, July 11th

    3rd Ward, LIVE, 8:00pm Tuesday, July 11th

       —Live on 11 July    Jul. 12 '06 - 02:59AM    #
  26. jbailey: Mr. Ankli is having fun with running for council. At the earlier debate he said he was a former stand up comic. I disagree about Roberts, he seems more in tune with actual city issue than his opponent who seems to have a national focus.

       —Dustin    Jul. 12 '06 - 03:11AM    #
  27. Dustin: I don’t remember any national issues. The questions were all about local issues, and I thought all of Saurez’s answers were locally focused. Which response are you referring to?

       —jbailey    Jul. 12 '06 - 08:12AM    #