Troy Transit Center - gathering dust and aging since 2013

Troy Transit Center – gathering dust and aging since 2013


In a previous blog post, I offered Troy City Council candidates the opportunity for free campaign space by responding to survey questions. This 2014 election, I’ll offer the same to all political candidates, posting their replies on the Patch and on the USA Melting Pot website.

Some of the club principles can be found in the description of our logo. Recent activities of this club, founded in 2011, are detailed in our update to the Troy City Council:


State Senate Race – 13th District

Five Republicans and two Democrats are running for the 13th District State Senate Seat, which includes Rochester and Rochester Hills, Troy, Clawson, Royal Oak, Berkley, Birmingham, and Bloomfield Hills.

Please see previous survey responses from Republicans Rocky RaczkowskiAl Gui, Marty Knollenberg and Democrat Ryan Fishman.


Survey Response from Ethan Baker, Republican Candidate for State Senate

Questions in italicsanswers from candidate in bold:

1.  The Troy Transit Center is a government project with federal funds allocated by the state, approved by a 4-3 majority on the Troy Council. All three levels of government were involved: federal, state and local. It has not yet opened because of an ownership dispute over the land. What lessons can be learned from this? (See more background in this article.)

As a Troy resident, I greatly look forward to the day when this issue will be behind us, so that Troy can once again be known for all that is good in our city and not for some stumbles over the past few years.  Lessons can be learned from this, however, and should be. 

We’ve learned that this project could be completed with a lesser cost than initially approved and we should always look at government projects with that in mind.  We’ve learned that contract language matters (i.e. requirements that the Transit Center be fully funded within ten years) and that agreements between parties, when properly negotiated and agreed upon, will be upheld by our courts. 

Most importantly, we’ve learned that all politics IS local and that single issues can driver voter attitudes and dominate city politics and news.  This project has dominated key Troy elections—mayoral, recall, and city council—and has demonstrated the importance of having a smaller, smarter, and more efficient government.

2.   Have you read The Liberty Amendments: Restoring the American Republic, by former Reagan Justice Department attorney and conservative talk show host Mark Levin?

Yes, I have.  Maintaining and protecting our liberties in this country are a must, and I was initially drawn to Mr. Levin’s book because of his outspokenness on reducing government overreach and our shared connection to President Reagan.   

3.   What do you think of the eleven specific amendments? You can read a summary of them in this National Review article. Should each of them be adopted, modified or discarded? Please explain. 

I think the Liberty Amendments are a fantastic model for reform and would undoubtedly do wonders to restore the constitutionally mandated power and authority to the states and the people instead of the federal government.  We must always remember that “We the People” tell the government what to do and not the other way around.  Unfortunately, that message seems to be getting lost as the federal government expands and the Executive Branch is acting with more and more unchecked power. 

There is no doubt that the Liberty Amendments would restructure our government and expand our God-given, and constitutionally mandated, liberties.  I would be supportive of starting a serious dialog on all eleven of the Amendments.

4.   What other statements would you like to make on behalf of your campaign?

Like many others, I greatly admire and have a deep respect for President Ronald Reagan. I proudly served President Reagan in his post-presidential office, and cherish those memories and the valuable lessons I learned from him every day. Ronald Reagan always considered himself to be a Citizen-Politician and often said he went into politics, in part, to put up his hand and say, “Stop.”

We need more Citizen-Politicians in Lansing, and bold citizens in Michigan who are willing to say “Stop” to Career Politicians, who have lost touch with what life is like outside of the Capitol, and “Stop” to runaway spending and governmental growth. 

We need new leadership to generate creative ideas and practical solutions, and need the wisdom to expand proven policies that are working, bringing ongoing opportunities for building coalitions, expanding across the board business incentives, and focusing on jobs returning to Michigan to revitalize our state.  Over the past few years, there have been many decisions made in Lansing, with the best of intentions, but it is time for new Citizen-Politicians with a fresh perspective and excellent, efficient implementation to move Michigan forward. 

We need a smaller, smarter and more efficient government—one that doesn’t intrude unnecessarily in our personal or professional lives and understands its limited role.  This type of government can only be accomplished by electing Citizen-Politicians who will stand up for these principles in Lansing and work every day to keep government off our backs. I am running for State Senate because I am that citizen.


More information can be found on Ethan Baker’s campaign website.


Liberty Amendments Summary

I’ve read Levin’s book and am interested to know what candidates for public office think of it. More description is in a previous blog post, including links to a National Review article summarizing the book. Below is a brief summary:

Term Limits for Congress, Supreme Court and More Control for State Governments

The first amendment limits members to a total of 12 years in Congress! Supreme Court justices would also be limited to 12 year terms. Other provisions would return more decisions to the states and promote economic growth through the “laboratories of democracy.” (the states)

The closer government is to the people it represents, the more responsive and less wasteful it will be.

Fiscal Tipping Point

President Franklin Roosevelt said, “Any Government, like any family, can for a year spend a little more than it earns. But you and I know that a continuation of that habit means the poorhouse.”

America has reached the tipping point, where its debts will soon be unmanageable if it doesn’t act soon. The growth of the Federal Government must be restrained. Levin’s Liberty Amendments may need some modification. But they are a good start, in my opinion.

Offer to All Political Candidates

I hope candidates choose to read this important book. Since my blog is the most widely read on the Troy Patch, I’ll offer all candidates the exposure to answer the above four questions and give them free publicity for their campaigns.

As with the Troy Council election, I’ll print their responses in the order received.

Easy way to help a great club

If you wish to support the USA Melting Pot club, a Michigan non-profit corporation, you can make your Amazon purchases through the link on our website. The club will get a percentage of the purchase to fund community service activities and our scholarship fund. Thanks for your support.


Conservative columnist Dale Murrish writes on historytraveltechnologyreligion and politics for the USA Melting Pot club and the Troy Patch. You can read his articles on other topics by clicking on the links.