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John Nephew

Maplewood City Council Policy & Politics


Council Corner

One of the items I submitted for the agenda of Monday's council meeting is a resolution that would suspend the city council column in the city's newsletter through the election campaign season. This is in response to a citizen petition submitted to the city council at our last regular meeting. (I've uploaded my agenda report to this website.)

I admit that I'm of two minds on this. On the one hand, I recognize that the blatant use of city resources for campaigning, as we saw in the 2007 election season, is unseemly. On the other hand, I also remember how each monthly newsletter with the writings of Longrie/Hjelle/Cave/Copeland would bring my campaign fresh volunteers and unsolicited contributions from angry residents. Residents continue to tell me about their visceral negative reactions to the mayor's cloying prose and Erik's frothing, paranoid hyperbole. So I find myself a little torn between the sense of what is proper, and the political value of giving Diana and Erik the rope with which to do her reelection campaign the most harm possible.

In any case, it seems only fair to put our citizens' request in front of the whole council for a vote. I figure the result is pretty good either way -- either we make the city newsletter less of a source of resident anger during the campaign, or the council votes down this resolution and then Erik writes a rant that's even more over-the-top than usual, which is sure to help motivate people to get out and vote against his ally, the mayor. (Assuming, of course, that he's still afraid to run for reelection himself.)

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Having watched the resolution debate, it looks like Ms. Longrie is unable to pass up an opportunity to display just what sort of person she is.

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