Put Your Best Face Forward

Why nothing bad ever happens at City Hall

And while it's easy to mark Plewacki as the bogeyman here, it's also true that the tone has been set by the mayor. Rybak admittedly is a great booster for the city, and he does that aspect of his job very well. But it's also true that he's a political novice.

As Rybak's campaign for office kicked into high gear in 2001, his main stump line was that he would "open up the doors of City Hall," and he even went so far as to tote around an oversized air-freshener on the stump. The refrain played up the stench of corruption--and not just perceived, but federally prosecuted--that hovered over the incumbents at City Hall at the time.

Rybak--who has had a host of jobs, ranging from real estate and internet consulting to heading Minneapolis's Downtown Council--is certainly more visible than his predecessor. He has always been remarkably accessible to reporters. But whereas Sharon Sayles Belton rarely seemed to care about her press, Rybak sometimes seems concerned with little else. And perhaps that's only natural for a businessperson turned politician whose livelihood has always depended on putting the right face on things.

Who can turn the world on with his smile? R.T. Rybak gets happy
David Fick
Who can turn the world on with his smile? R.T. Rybak gets happy


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