The Ann Arbor City Council is expected to vote today on whether it will join San Francisco, Detroit and 19 other U.S. cities in passing a formal resolution opposing possible military action in Iraq.

“The council needs to be convinced that this is a move that is popular with the members of the community,” said Phillis Engelbert, spokeswoman for the Ann Arbor Committee for Peace, which drafted the original resolution. “For someone who has been out and about in the community for a year it is apparent that Ann Arbor is an anti-war community.”

The resolution, which has been sponsored by Councilwomen Kim Groome (D-1st Ward) and Heidi Herrell (D-3rd Ward), is intended to show support for U.S. Rep. Lynn Rivers (D-Ann Arbor) and Sen. Carl Levin (D-Detroit), who have opposed war with Iraq since the issue came up, Groome said.

“Peaceful efforts are always an uphill battle,” said Councilwoman Wendy Woods (D-5th Ward), who supports the resolution. “It is important for (Rivers and Levin) to know that they have the backing of their local community. Feedback is the way we know whether or not … we are doing something the people want.”

Groome added that while Ann Arbor is not a metropolis, it is important for the population to join the many cities that have passed similar resolutions.

“As that number grows, I think the federal legislature will pay attention,” Groome said. “It’s important that Ann Arbor adds its voice.”

The resolution is popular both in the city and the state Legislature, council members said, and is enjoying support from many different areas of the public sector. Lyn Kelley, owner of the Common Language Bookstore on South Fourth Avenue, said she supports the proposition not only for political reasons, but economic ones as well.

“As a business owner, I’m concerned about the economy … my business is down since the quarter after Sept. 11,” she said. “I won’t be the only store that can’t weather another year of diminished sales.”

“Businesses are another contingency to be heard from,” she added. “The business community, I think, is expected to be somewhat conservative.”

But some community members are not convinced the resolution is a good idea.

“For them to take a stance denouncing the position of the federal government is fairly irresponsible,” said Matt Nolan, a member of the College Republicans. “It’s not that the Ann Arbor City Council shouldn’t voice an opinion, it’s just that you have to have some degree of trust in your elected officials.”

Others express doubts as to the tangible affect the resolution will have.

“It’s really easy for people to write (the communities signing similar resolutions) off as pockets of liberalism and not representing the majority,” said SNRE senior Janet Bachloer. “I don’t think Bush listens very well and his popularity is so high now that I think he has enough support to do it.”

“I don’t think it will make a big difference,” she added. “But I would bust out my markers and billboard and say it.”

The City Council will convene at 7:30 p.m. at City Hall 100 N. Fifth Ave.

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