In recent days, various opinions have been expressed about the Mike Eller Campaign, in online forums both reputable and disreputable. While I appreciate the colorful discourse and fevered interest in my candidacy for City Council, please allow me to make a few factual corrections.
First, my initial run for City Council was not in 2008. It was in 1992, when I ran as a Democratic candidate in Ward 5 (back when there was a “Ward 5”). Local bloggers have correctly observed that I was once a member of a now-defunct organization, the America First Party of Michigan – a fact that I have never disputed nor attempted to hide. In 2008, I ran again for City Council as an Independent, but immediately thereafter returned to my roots in the Democratic Party, where I have been a dues-paying member ever since.
I think it is important to recognize that not all Democrats are the same. Case in point: Some in our community would argue that strong opposition to higher taxes can only be a “non-Democratic position.” Clearly this is not the case if Ypsilanti, a city that is overwhelmingly Democratic, overwhelmingly rejected the recent proposals for a new millage and city income tax.
The Democratic Party is, first and foremost, a party of the people. It is built upon a profound respect for the dignity of every individual; and its central tenet is that government serves the people – not the other way around. Nearly two in three of our neighbors opposed higher taxes. Did two in three City Council members do the same? No. Their support was unanimous. Which is to say, City Council is out of touch with its constituents.
This is why I decided to run for City Council. I want to add that missing voice. I want to protect the man on the street from policies that would destroy property values, take away jobs, and cause more foreclosures. I want to ensure that the city remains focused on its core mission of serving the people. Why? Because that is what a DEMOCRAT does. A Democrat does not get into bed with developers on your dime. A Democrat does not seize properties. A Democrat does not strip money from the poor and middle class to hide the consequences of bad policy and save the brand image of local elites.
You may disagree with me, and that is your right. But let me be perfectly clear: My only purpose is to serve the City of Ypsilanti – to serve the city where I was born, the city where I have chosen to raise my children, the city that I love.
Finally, while I understand the human penchant to demonize those one does not know, based on representations from people motivated to misrepresent, it would be misguided at best to believe that success in business or life could be built upon bigotry and hatred. If you want to know what I really think, you can find it here.
Paid for by The Mike Eller Campaign Committee
708 Carver Ave., Ypsilanti, MI 48198