The city that I love is not as progressive or liberal as it once was. Or is it that the elected officials that have weaseled their way into office on platforms of conspiracy theories, scare tactics and hyperbole are trying to turn our progressive city into a bastion of conservative principles without the public realizing it.
As I sit and watch the Ann Arbor city council meetings, I am astounded at what rhetoric comes out of some of the councilmembers mouths in the guise of a democrat. Sumi Kailasapathy, Stephen Kunselman, Mike Anglin, and Sally Peterson are all Democrats in name only-DINOs. Each calls themself a Democrat but their words and actions mimic the Teapublicans of congress. These councilmembers along with Jane Lumm, a so-called independent but really a Republican/Teapublican make up what I am going to be calling the Teapublican Caucus of the Ann Arbor City Council.
Our Teapublican Caucus on council votes NO on things that are popular, refuses to compromise on anything because quite frankly they don’t seem to understand the issues at times, use obstructionist tactics to purposely disrupt the process and have now started to refuse to appoint residents to serve on city boards and commissions because they, the city councilmembers, prefers someone else who is anti- to whatever the board discusses.
These are exactly the same tactics that the Tea Party uses in Congress in order to disrupt the governmental process. They vote against everything without regard for the consequences. Their ideology comes before the welfare of the country. They refuse to confirm the Presidents appointments causing seats to sit unfilled for years in the federal government
Here are some recent issues that show their disregard for Democratic values and governmental process:
- They have voted against taking federal funds for various progressive projects stating that we should not use any form of tax money, even if there is no local match required, to fund these projects….eg. wind turbines.
- They are anti-mass transit, repeatedly stating that commuter rail will never happen so we should not waste any dollars on it, even though the State of Michigan is ramping up and investing in rail.
- They are attempting to give back DDA Tiff dollars back to other tax authorities for them to spend in other places outside of the city of Ann Arbor. These dollars that once would have been spent on infrastructure improvements in the downtown will now be lost; we will have to use general fund dollars to get the same projects accomplished. Why are these counilmembers purposely taking money out of our pockets and handing it over to other tax jurisdictions? Where is their duty to serving the taxpayers of Ann Arbor? It is part of the Teaparty ideology to always give tax money back regardless of the consequences.
- They voted against a by-right development that would have resulted in a major lawsuit for the city if the vote failed….a pure disregard for the law.
- They are voting down nominations to boards using ridiculous accusations because they disagree with the idea that the Mayor gets to make the nominations. They vote them down because they, the city councilmembers, prefers someone else who is anti- to whatever the board discusses. They don’t want somebody who is too “Pro” whatever the board discusses. For example they used the term too “Pro-DDA” to vote against someone for a DDA board position. Really? Should the environmental commission include an anti-climate change person? Should the historic district commission include someone who only likes modern McMansions?
These are just some basic examples that I am listing as an overview for now. It is not an all-inclusive list and I acknowledge that on some votes they have not all voted in a block. However, even when one is an outlier they still spout the tea party reasoning while voting against their caucus.
This first post is just meant to be more of an introduction to why I think the DINOs are more conservative than many realize. I plan on covering many of the above topics in detail in future blog posts. As I tackle each topic I will go into more depth, using the Councilmember’s own words and actions to show their conservative Teaparty side. What I intend to show is a pattern or a trend in how this Tea Party Caucus is fooling the residents of Ann Arbor into thinking that they have the best interest of the residents in mind.
So Wake Up Ann Arbor! And pay attention to what your council member is actually saying. If they walk like a republican and talk like a teapublican, then……they are NOT a DEMOCRAT! (or an independent)
non sum qualis eram