Thursday, August 16, 2012

Bye, Tony

If you've ever spent time around GOP events in Ramsey County, chances are you've seen Tony Bennett. He has always made the point of claiming to be a Republican, but during his tenure on the Ramsey County Board, he's always been happy to spend more money. He recently got his moment in the spotlight as the primary face of the effort to bring the Vikings to Arden Hills.

On Tuesday, he got his reward:

Ramsey County Commissioner Tony Bennett lost his bid for re-election to the County Board in Tuesday's primary election, after serving 16 years in office.

Bennett faced three challengers in the nonpartisan election, and he came in third by a narrow margin. The top two vote-getters, Blake Huffman and Frank Mabley, advance to the November general election. The fourth candidate, former Ramsey County Sheriff Bob Fletcher, came in last.

Bennett understood what happened to him, but his explanation shows he lacks understanding in other ways:

Bennett was a champion of the failed effort to locate the new Minnesota Vikings stadium in Arden Hills. He said that may have factored into his loss.

"When you've been involved as much as I've been, as long as I've been, sometimes you do things that some people don't like," Bennett said. "It wasn't the stadium that was the issue, it was cleaning up a property that needed to be cleaned up, it was putting some people back to work. The stadium just happened to be the vehicle we used."
This is nonsense. The stadium was the issue. Bennett saw it as a capstone of his long career. And as it turns out, it is the capstone -- just not the way Bennett thought it would be.

Huffman will do a better job of protecting the interests of his constituents than Bennett has. If he gets Sue Jeffers as a colleague, things will change for the better on the County Board.


Night Writer said...

Capstone. Tombstone. Hard to tell the difference sometimes.

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