Election 2013, Volume 2, Issue 6: How do I hate thee? Let me count the ways.
So, in doing my research on the various races I keep running into things I hate about all the (serious) candidates. (The non-serious candidates have their own problems; I'm less meticulous about how I rank them, in general, but trust me, I can find plenty to hate about all of them, too.)
I was pondering whether typing it all out would help me identify the Lesser Evil(s), so I'm going to give it a shot. Here are all the things I dislike about the top eight mayoral candidates.
She is overly fond of business buzzwords and content-free puffery (although someone edited her website after my first visit and got rid of the diagrams that looked like they'd come out of a bad PowerPoint presentation) and her political experience is pretty minimal.
The sad fact is that right now, I'm not sure I would vote for a Republican for dogcatcher. Even a moderate, sensible Republican who was running as an Independent. Sorry, Cam. Also, although he supports bike lanes he doesn't think we should be spending public money on bikeways and bike paths -- things like the Greenway are unlikely to happen on his watch, which I think would be a shame because it's innovative stuff like this that makes Minneapolis a great city.
Betsy likes streetcars, which I think are kind of a stupid idea.
Don Samuels voted for the Vikings stadium deal. The "envelopes full of money!!!" quote did not suggest corruption to me so much as a totally weird political naivete of the sort that could get him into huge trouble if he's not careful.
Dan Cohen is clearly a crank, I loathe the idea of a downtown casino, he's basically trying to buy his way into office, and finally, although I'm not opposed to public funding for the arts, I think offering a bailout NOW to the Minnesota Orchestra sends entirely the wrong message (unless it's predicated on the resignation of the entire board and the firing of the CEO).
The people who says he's a corporate shill are 100% correct. He run a greenwashing company, he's friends with all the wrong people, and he'll dodge any question he doesn't like (he never replied to my e-mail, never replied to my question on his Facebook page, and you'll find an unnerving lack of depth if you dig at all on his website). Creepy, but affable. You know who he really, really reminds me of? Norm Coleman, except that Norm Coleman was so slimy he left a trail behind him like a snail; Mark Andrew is a lot more personable than Norm Coleman ever was, but similarly willing to say whatever he thinks will get him into a position of power.
Jackie Cherryhomes personally represents the worst of the Sayles-Belton administration. On her watch the city screwed over small business people in order to throw buckets of money at enormous corporations. When she lost, she shredded heaps of constituent records rather than pass anything along to the woman who defeated her. I desperately don't want to see her return to political office; she was an absolutely terrible person to have in any sort of power.
Bob Fine was responsible for one of the most atrocious Park Superintendents Minneapolis has ever had; he shoved the guy into power because he'd known him in high school. As much as I like some of Fine's ideas and priorities, that sort of cronyism is disastrous enough in the parks system; I really don't want to see it in the mayor's office. Also, even if he were my #1 choice, on the poll the Strib did last month, he'd have been outpolled by Captain Jack Sparrow if Captain Jack had been in the poll.
I think if I had to vote today (in Minneapolis) I might do:
1. Betsy Hodges
2. Don Samuels
3. Cam Winton
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