Minneapolis 2017: Campaign Digest #2

This will get you caught up on all the Minneapolis election news that’s happened since the last campaign digest.


Jacob Frey recently spoke Somali in front of a crowd of Somalis, and you can see he’s feeling pretty triumphant about that.

Mayor Hodges came out against the tip penalty/credit. Stephanie March—who “eats out professionally, on multiple days every week”responded with a poorly conceived open letter suggesting women who are sexually harassed in the restaurant industry knew what they were signing up for.

I got to the bottom of why Stephanie March is so bent out of shape over the minimum wage: she and her husband could’ve paid their restaurant workers zero dollars per hour and still gone out of business.

Ward 1

Incumbent Kevin Reich used a photo of himself behind Alondra Cano in a campaign email intended to promote his commitment to “diversity.” This is a strange thing to do because Reich is out of focus in the background, and Cano wants nothing to do with his campaign.

@WedgeLIVE I was never asked by his campaign to approve this nor do I endorse him. Im disappointed his campaign used my image in this way

— Alondra Cano (@People4Alondra) February 17, 2017

Kevin isn’t subtle.

Reich is touting his pro-bike credentials on his recently created Twitter account. He’s hoping the hashtag #Reich4Bikes will make us forget about his vote on 3rd Ave.

Ward 2

The poll, conducted in the Second Ward last week, was commissioned by Minneapolis DFL Chair Dan McConnell without consulting the central committee. The potential candidate who would run against Gordon is McConnell’s wife, Becky Boland, secretary of the Minneapolis DFL.

This is notable because the non-DFL Cam Gordon actually pushes for stuff that’s in the DFL platform, but actual DFLers Barb and Lisa Goodman roadblock. Also of concern is the fact that the DFL Chair is privately spending $2,000 on a poll to benefit his wife, while publicly saying the organization has barely enough money to pay for routine democracy, like caucuses and conventions.

Ward 3

In a profile of Ward 3 candidates in the Journal, Cordelia Pierson isn’t sure about her position on the minimum wage.

There’s more certainty on Pierson’s website, where she says, “I support a $15 wage for full-time workers…” But then you come to the next paragraph, and she’s back to hedging, saying she’s “firmly committed to shaping this policy” to avoid “negative results.” If you happen to run into Pierson, you should ask her about the minimum wage.


Minneapolis’ most prominent Trump supporter, LA Nik, announced his campaign for city council. I was quick to demand an explanation for his gaffes, and he has done so in my YouTube comments.

Ward 4

Classic Barb Johnson Moment:

If you find that you’re experiencing too much Barb during this election season, you could support one of Barb’s opponents: Phillipe Cunningham and Stephanie Gasca.

— R↯an (@pyry) February 17, 2017

Find someone who looks at you the way the woman in Barb’s Facebook cover photo looks at Barb. pic.twitter.com/IbVWlnKcGf

— Wedge LIVE! (@WedgeLIVE) March 4, 2017

Ward 5

Can you tell the difference between Blong’s logo and a shopping bag?

Blong’s logo is a shopping bag.

Ward 7

I checked whether Lisa Goodman’s website matches reality. I have determined that Goodman hates your annoying garden.


Ward 9

When we last checked in on Ward 9—after the trouble at Gary Schiff’s pancake party—I was telling you to not get involved. Since then we’ve gone from pancakes to puppets. Here’s what Gary Schiff wrote on his campaign Facebook page, firing back at accusations from incumbent Alondra Cano that he had perpetrated puppet impropriety:

…the dates for puppet-making workshops are Saturdays, Tuesdays, and Thursdays in April. The day of the convention is, in fact, the only Saturday before May Day that does not have a scheduled puppet workshop.

Ward 9 is expected to remain a hazardous area at least through April 4th. We see a high probability of “Open Letter” conditions on Facebook. We continue to recommend that civilian populations not get involved.

Ward 10

On February 15, Scott Fine announced he would challenge Lisa Bender for the DFL nomination. Over the next two weeks, there were no visible signs of a Fine campaign. Everything was not fine; the web developer candidate didn’t even have a website. Then, on February 27th he announced he was withdrawing from the DFL race, citing unspecified “recent events,” and would proceed straight to the November general election.

A few days later, an insider attending a Bender fundraiser sent me this:

🎶You used to call me on my scott fone.🎶

Looking ahead to March 8th, Lisa Bender will be hosting the Ward 10 Minneapolis Mayoral Forum. It might seem a little unusual for a city council member to host a mayoral forum, and to promote it with her campaign’s branding. Lisa Bender is an evil genius who’s gotten the candidates for mayor to appear with her, at her own event, giving the appearance they’re all endorsing her re-election (and they will surely regret it when Scott Fine gets his shit together).

Ward 13

Adam Faitek is mounting a late challenge to Linea Palmisano, a little more than a month away from the April 4th DFL caucuses. Faitek is positioning himself as the progressive alternative to Palmisano.