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Saturday, November 03, 2007

St. Paul City Council election will be verdict on work of liberal majority

Please click onto the COMMENTS for the story.


Blogger Bob said...

Four of city's seven ward seats are in serious contention
Pioneer Press
Article Last Updated: 11/02/2007 11:45:30 PM CDT

St. Paul's political future will be back in the balance Tuesday as the liberal and moderate arms of the City Council wrestle again for control at the polls.

It'll be a first trial for the incumbent four-member liberal majority, which eked out one of the slimmest wins in city history in the last election in 2003. Swing district winner Lee Helgen, in Ward 5, had only 38 percent of the vote after the previous incumbent died during a re-election bid, opening up the general election to rival, and unsuccessful, conservative campaigns.

Helgen joined Dave Thune, who survived the 2003 primary in Ward 2 by just 84 votes, as well as longtime incumbents Kathy Lantry, from the East Side's Ward 7, and Ward 4 Council Member Jay Benanav, of Merriam Park, to unseat the incumbent council president and thwart Mayor Randy Kelly, a conservative Democrat.

This fall's election will be a judgement on the work of that majority. Among their successes:

-- Adding dozens of police officers to the city's ranks.

-- Bringing the 2008 Republican National Convention and the world's spotlight to the Xcel Energy Center.

Other efforts have proven more controversial, including a citywide smoking ban, enacted in 2006, and a 30 percent increase in property taxes through 2008.

Only four of the city's seven council seats are being seriously contested. Ward 3 challenger Gerald Mischke has decided against running, although he remains on the ballot against Pat Harris. In Ward 4 and Ward 7, frontrunners Russ Stark and Lantry face challengers who have spent less than $800 in a year in which election spending may approach $200,000 in some races.

Hardest fought is the challenge to Ward 1 incumbent Debbie Montgomery, a retired police commander and the first black woman elected to the council. She is being challenged by Melvin Carter, 28, son of a county commissioner and bidding to be one of the youngest elected officials in city history.

Aided by the St. Paul Area Chamber of Commerce and the business community, Montgomery has a previously unimaginable war chest, with more left in her coffers last week than Carter may spend on his whole campaign. But he has the Democratic-Farmer-Labor Party endorsement, which has always proven pivotal in Ward 1 elections.

Literally on the other side of the tracks - a railroad divides Montgomery's district from neighboring Ward 5 - incumbent Helgen also is fighting for his political life. Although he received more votes than financial planner David Haas in the primary, the challenger's campaign has out-fundraised Helgen 3-to-1 in the past six weeks, and St. Paul developer Jerry Trooien has pitched in $50,000 for independent campaign expenditures. That money went to the St. Paul police union's political arm, which is campaigning boldly against Helgen.

The union also is campaigning for former police officer Dan Bostrom, the other incumbent on the East Side and the former council president. He's facing a challenge in Ward 6 from community organizer Pakou Hang, bidding to become the city's first Hmong council member. Bostrom has the support of key parts of the political establishment, including U.S. Rep. Betty McCollum, although the DFL Party deadlocked over Hang and Bostrom during its endorsing convention this spring.

The biggest surprise of this political season, however, has been Thune. A former council president who stepped down in 1997 but ran again six years later, Thune won only 49.9 percent of the vote in the sparsely attended primary, the worst showing of any incumbent despite his DFL endorsement. His opponent, gallery owner Bill Hosko, was a vocal proponent of Trooien's $1.5 billion Bridges of St. Paul real estate development on the West Side, which Thune opposed. Hosko also is drawing support from bar owners who opposed the smoking ban that Thune introduced in 2004.

Polls will be open from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. across St. Paul on Tuesday.

Tim Nelson can be reached at or 651-228-5489.

More Online

Detailed information about all 14 candidates, including biographical information, photos, recorded interviews, endorsements, links to their Web sites and televised debates are all available at

11:41 AM  
Blogger Bob said...

My comment at

12:04 PM  
Blogger Sharon Anderson said...

Aaron Foster and City Elections are tyed togetherHow did Barbara Winn die? 26 years Go to search mara Gottfried for story

Good luck getting a fair trail with all the evidence laid out in a newspaper article...the crime is 26 years old which increased the chances of seating a somewhat impartial (if not racist) jury.

Sounds like a case that will be moved to Hennepin County for trial.

Posted by: The "St" stands for Small town

11/3/2007 11:35 AM

We the Candidates in Ward (2) are calling for the Resignations of Montgomery & Bostrom, Pensioned Cops during the Foster-Winn Murder, DSI employee Lisa Martin Foster's wife/girlfriend, kicking Betty Speaker out of her Home, while on Kidney Dialysis, upper R for story and on Judge Michael Fetsch has violated Judicial Canons, many times ie: Ventura v Davis-Dahn, then to NO BAIL for Murder sets Presedant for any all Murders etc. Bradley Rhodes former Aitkin Co. Attorney DISBARRED brings into play the corruption and the Murder of, Judicial Deals must be publically abated look at Restraining Order against Fetch Submitted for Truth, In kGood Faith, pursuant to penality of Perjury and
Posted by:

12:23 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Tim Nelson of the Pioneer Press. The "Lying Reporter"..

Never forgot how you lied about the 14 Jessimine house Timmy. Got caught with your pants down didn't you!

1:52 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I don't especially blame their political leanings, since we have had sincere and responsible liberals in the past.

Here, however the job of managing the city has completely gotten out of control. The mindset is the same as the most incompetent amateurs, trying to get positive results with arrogance and cunning. All these mind-blowing expenses like police and security are due to mismanagement. Writing 125,000 parking tickets a year is pathetic and sells out the future. An ounce of prevention would have been worth tons of cure. All it would have taken to forestall most of these problems is a sense of justice, common courtesy and common sense.

Helgen demonstrated he is a scary halloween idiot with his comment about the demolition of Nancy O's house. Others are either off in La-La land, or don't have the guts to stand up for anything.

Unfortunately, challengers appear equally mediocre.

St. Paul's leadership are the lost souls. All this comes during the calm before the storm of the impending racketeering and human rights violation decisions.

St. Paul has lost it.

3:42 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thee may not have ever been any lawsuits except for the fact that some of the plaintiffs along with their attorney wanted to sit down and meet with the city attorney and discuss the issues. At first the city attorney set up a meeting and then they canceled it and said they had nothing to talk about. It was at this point that the current plaintiffs in the racketeering lawsuits started an action against the city. I know this for sure because I know one of the plaintiffs. If the people of St Paul want leaders that would rather fight costly lawsuits rather than sitting down and ahve a civilized discussion, then they deserve what they are about to get.

8:57 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Excuse me, but wasn't the events that occured that are in the lawsuits all things that occured during the Kelly administration, and most of them when the council was 4-3 conservative.


How quickly they forget.


11:02 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

When has the St Paul City Council ever been even close to conservative other than for the presence of Blakey? And by the way, Blakey voted against having Dawkins run the NHPI office didn't he?

2:40 AM  
Blogger Sharon Anderson said...

How quickly we forget that Lisa Martin DSI Inspector, apparantly Aaron Fosters ex-wife who crucified Betty Speaker took her home when Betty was on kidney dialysis Lisa Martin must testify now about the Winn Murder, Police Impound Lot etc, They must bring down the corruption in the DSI Department, director now Bobby Kessler, who knows where the bodys are buried. We call for the Pensioned Parisites Cops Montgomery and Bostrom to resign, re: Fosters-Winn Murder...

10:59 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Every day Chuck Repke comments on how good the city is.
If it is true Repke why is this city under such scrutiny.

1:37 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


What scrutiny?

I live in the city and things ae going pretty good for me. I think I'll vote for more of the same.

5:18 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

To 5:18, Thank you Mr. Magner.

6:17 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I give the plaintiff in these lawsuits a lot of credit.They are all class.They could come on this site a leak information about the suits but they don't.They could let information go that could hurt their election chances.There is still so much that all of you don't know about the suits.Someday you will all know.

7:07 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'll agree with 7:09, and I am privy to some of the things that have not been said and shown yet. I called one of the plaintiffs this morning to ask why and the answer may suprise many people. The reason they don't say anything is because the city keeps digging themselves in deeper and deeper and to say anything about the unknown just allows them to avoid the traps. This paricular plaintiff also said they had no interest in seeing any of the council people removed at the elctions. He said they would prefer to have them all be sitting council people when the real truth comes out. You are going to love it Bob when the day comes that you know what I know!!

4:02 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

And Kathy Lantry has class as well. It's a war of the classes.....may the best man win!

12:11 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Just as with Mayor Kelly's razor thin margin, the current city council followed right in his footsteps by going out and pissing off as many people as they could, and now they expect to win? I have some news for you city council people.....when you want to win elections, you do it by being fair, honest and compassionate. You guys would do well to learn this aspect of life in your next endevor at whatever you decide to do after the voters are done with you. The balance of power is about to change.

12:15 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

12:15 You were right, the Council turned more to the left!

9:56 AM  

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