Hardball politics in St. Paul

Categories: St. Paul
St. Paul Mayor Randy Kelly's endangered re-election campaign is ratcheting up the rhetoric. In a mailing received by St. Paul voters this week, his opponent Chris Coleman is pictured with his mouth zippered shut. The headline on the piece reads, "Chris Coleman has a plan to raise taxes and spend your money. He just won't tell you what the plan is before the election."


The piece then goes on to use some fuzzy math to portray Coleman as a truly terrifying menace to taxpayers. For instance, the mailing notes that when the city council voted to raise St. Paul's property tax levy by 67 percent more than what was proposed by Mayor Kelly, "Chris Coleman was silent!" Of course, this is another way of saying that the city council voted to raise the property tax levy by 5 percent, whereas Kelly wanted a 3 percent boost. But that doesn't sound nearly as menacing.

The Pioneer Press' indispensable City Hall Scoop also has the inside dope on a mailing that Kelly is sending only to East Side residents. The piece shamelessly attempts to capitalize on Kelly's roots in the area. "When your mayor comes from the East Side, you know his heart," it reads. "When your mayor comes from the East Side, you know where he stands. That's the East Side Way. That's the Randy Kelly way."

The Coleman campaign is not amused by the hardball tactics. It released a press release today criticizing the Kelly camp's recent actions. "These campaign tactics clearly signify Randy Kelly continues to subscribe to false Rovian attacks in an attempt to distort Chris Coleman's record in the final days of the campaign," Coleman spokesman Bob Hume says in the release.

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