Why I am running...
May 12, 2020
On May 28, 1816, Thomas Jefferson, while writing to his friend John Taylor, said, "The principle of spending money to be paid by posterity, under the name of funding, is but swindling futurity on a large scale." This is a problem, we as a society are facing, at all levels. We are incurring massive amounts of debt and seem to be content to pass it to our children or even future generations who are not born. This is something we should not be proud of and must work to correct. This must start at the lowest levels if we are to ever hope to get a grip on the problem. Our first step must be to get our houses in order, then our cities or towns. My name is Danny Ray. My wife and I are both lifelong residents of Mesa, AZ. I am a proud father of 7 wonderful children, who my wonderful wife and I plan on raising in Mesa. I am running for City Council in Mesa, AZ District 1 and against Councilman Mark Freeman for this very purpose. Nothing that we do is of any value if we pass the bill on to our children and their children. The word legacy likes to be tossed around. Leaving the bill for someone else is not a legacy that I, or the City of Mesa, should want to be known for. By getting our spending under control, we can begin to tackle other important issues. Once we are financially operating how we should be, then that can free us up to be able to tackle other issues we may face as a society.
If this is important to you, please join me in restoring the sound principles necessary to leave our children on financially stable ground. Feel free to reach out if you have question or would like to become involved along the way.
My Name Is Danny Ray. I am a native of Mesa and an owner of a small business that does residential and commercial construction and roofing. Growing up I attended Lehi Elementary, Kino Junior High, and Westwood High School. My roots are here in Northwest Mesa. My wife, Alisa, who comes from the Judd and Shumway families have strong ties to Mesa and especially the Lehi area where they have been strong members of the community. We have chosen to raise our small family of seven kids (Roxie, Londann, Rowdy, Mavrik, Evolet, Marshall, and Holland) here because of the great family oriented community that Mesa is.
In my free time I like to be involved in my kids activities and have coached wrestling and baseball. I also enjoy hunting, shooting firearms, studying the Constitution and The Founding Fathers of our country. I also enjoy participating in service opportunities in my church.
Issues & Political Concerns
I loved growing up in Mesa. Although Mesa has issues, I would love to help tackle some of these problems, since Mesa is my HOME. There are a few things I would like to address. Some issues are things that have been done and others are where things haven't been done. What are your issues? Let's talk.
Thomas Jefferson called it SWINDLING Futurity when we go into debt in the name of funding. We must stop passing mass amounts of debt to future generations. We must prioritize our spending and get Mesa back to doing it's proper roles. We must take the time and address the needs and responsibilities of the city, versus the wants and extra roles the city has taken on.
When we drift from our intended role, is when we tend to be less effective and efficient.
Accountability to Citizens
As we elect representatives, we must watch them closely and hold them accountable. Patrick Henry once said, "Guard with jealous attention the public liberty. Suspect everyone who approaches that jewel." We currently have a majority of the council who have ignored the will of the people. The constant rate increases of utilities is a prime example. Another example of the broken trust, is the passing of the ASU campus that had previously been voted down by the citizens. There are rumors of back room deals that occurred involving this. Going around the back of the citizens is no way to build the trust that is needed to better our community.
Several years ago, in 2014, I ran against our current Mayor. I ran because I felt that the current level of debt that was required to maintain the spending levels was not right. As I campaigned, I kept hearing from elected and non elected officials that our debt levels were better than other municipalities. I also would hear how we should be more like or want to be more like other bigger cities around the world. We need to live our lives and run our city by principles not comparisons.
Another example of a lack of principled leadership was the circumstances involving and surrounding the death of Daniel Shaver in 2016. Being a Police officer is a hard job and we should try to give the necessary support to those hard working officers. When something bad happens we should not bury our heads in the sand. We need to deal with it. After the officers behaved badly and one of them chose to fire his weapon, we had a dead young man. This man was just visiting Mesa for work. The same officer, who shot Shaver, later retired so he could file and collect disability from the City of Mesa residents. This man, who shot another man, receives $2500 a month from the residents of Mesa. Nothing has been said from the Council or the Mayor. This should have been opposed at all levels, but was swept under the rug instead.
These days we currently are experiencing chaos. We should not be supporting bad behavior and definitely not ignoring it either. We should be working from the point of view of deescalation. We need to help our officers do their jobs. That way they, and the citizens of Mesa, can make it home to their families as safe as possible.
Leading from the front in hard issues.
We have budget issues, policing issues, and a pandemic we have been dealing with. We need to get our finances under control so we can be prepared for unknown issues that may arise. Councilman Jeremy Whittaker from District 2 seems to be the only member of the current council who wants to have an honest conversation about the finances. Phoenix says they will lose 25% of their small business and feel the effects of this pandemic for 6 years. The council is debating putting a $100 million bond on the ballot in November for roads construction. These road improvements are said to be necessary in Southeast Mesa, and I don't doubt it. However, it might be time to have some foresight and put other projects on hold such as ASU campus, Lehi soccer fields, and other park projects. There is nothing wrong with putting on the brakes and reevaluating "needed" projects. Part of being a leader is looking ahead and being prepared to weather storms or bumps in the road as they come.
Some ask what can I do? There is more to do than just voting. "WE THE PEOPLE" are responsible for the society we live in. It is up to us to hold our elected officials accountable and by supporting those candidates who we feel best represent us and best uphold our Constitution.
The Founders sacrificed their lives, their fortunes, and their sacred honor.
What are we wiling to sacrifice?
As citizens it is essential that we be involved to maintain our Republic. Find a candidate that you can support and can hold accountable, whether it be with your time, talents, energy, or financial support. If you are interested in helping my campaign to try and bring more fiscal responsibility back to Mesa please reach out. Any and all help is appreciated. Thank you for your consideration.