By Steve Neavling
DETROIT | Fri Mar 1, 2013 5:25pm EST
(Reuters) - Michigan Governor Rick Snyder cleared the way for a state takeover of Detroit, declaring that the birthplace of the U.S. automotive industry faces a fiscal emergency and that he has identified a top candidate to assume its management.
Friday's declaration by the Republican governor virtually assures that the state of Michigan will assume control of Detroit's books, and eventually decide whether the city should file the largest municipal bankruptcy in U.S. history.
Detroit has faced the steepest population decline of any major American city in recent decades. Once the fifth largest U.S. city and springboard for music icons such as Michael Jackson and Diana Ross, it now ranks 18th in size with about 700,000 people.
Berlin after national socialists
Detroit after union socialists.