Mayor Kelly: Even the silver medalist is still an Olympian

class=img_thumbleft>It's one thing to snatch victory from the jaws of defeat. It's another thing for incumbent St. Paul mayor Randy Kelly to sell his recent two-to-one primary defeat at the hands of Chris Coleman as a deliberate part of his reelection strategy. Yet that didn't keep Kelly and his crew from talking up the brighter side of an embarrassment. Confidential to Kelly: Why not brag about the 1,800-vote thrashing that you inflicted on third-place finisher and Green candidate Elizabeth Dickinson?

"We said we'd come in second. That comes as no surprise." --Kelly campaign spokesman Vince Muzik, quoted by the AP while watching primary returns with the mayor

"I came in second in the 2001 primary and won the general election. The fact is that my campaign has not been geared toward the primary. We are focusing on a November election where we are going to reach out to a broader group much different than the partisans who come out and vote in primaries." --Mayor Kelly, quoted September 15 in the Star Tribune

"Everybody was saying the voters were going to punish this mayor, so why did 35 percent fewer come out than four years ago to supposedly punish him?" --Sen. Norm Coleman's chief of staff Erich Mische, quoted September 15 in the Star Tribune

"It's hard to read anything into this because it's a historically low turnout. This is the DFL playground. They dominated primary votes. The turnout was terrible....The message of Chris Coleman apparently isn't resonating, because no one is buying it. --Vince Muzik, quoted September 14 in the Pioneer Press

"This might be the best thing that ever happened. It may really motivate his supporters." --Republican operative and Politics in Minnesota co-editor Sarah Janacek

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