This will be an exciting weekend as candidates and their supporters make their final case. This has been one of the most positive and constructive campaigns for Mayor that I can remember, and I hope all candidates can resist going negative now so we can all make a positive, informed decision.
Three things I request you do before you vote:
1) Rank your vote
Watch this great video that explains Ranked Choice Voting. Yes, we have to fix the fact that it’s too easy to get on the ballot. But don’t blame the length of the ballot on Ranked Choice Voting, which is really quite simple. Just decide who your top three candidates are, in order, and vote for them that way.
2) Follow the money
Read this very important piece in the Star Tribune that reviews who is giving money to the candidates. Getting a contribution from someone does not mean they can “buy you,” but it is important for voters to know who will have influence and who is putting lots of money into this campaign.
3) Read the fine print
Be very skeptical of last-minute attacks in the mail, and look to the bottom of the piece for the disclaimer, meaning who paid for it. If it doesn’t have a candidate’s name on it, ask more questions.
Specifically, be very skeptical about attacks you may see from the Minneapolis firefighters union. Now let me be totally clear: I have a tremendous respect for the professionals in the Fire Department who protect us every day. They are heroes. However, the union that represents them is known for bombastic attack literature that often comes late in a campaign. I saw a piece in the 13th Ward that misleadingly attacked me while encouraging a vote for a Council candidate. Bluntly: if it comes in the last week of a campaign, be very skeptical of anything you hear from the fire union and their leader, who is known for being over the top and not always accurate.
Now, independent expenditures are not coordinated with campaigns, so even if someone makes an inaccurate attack, blame the people who sent it, not necessarily the candidate that they’re supporting. But be skeptical.
Now go vote
Let me again say how much I respect the very positive nature of this campaign — it says great things about the candidates and the people of Minneapolis. Now get out there and vote next Tuesday, November 5.