Minneapolis mayoral candidates play "Where's Rybak?"

You probably haven't noticed, but Minneapolis Mayor R.T. Rybak is up for reelection next month. We don't think Rybak even knows about it.

He's got 10 challengers this year and many of them are ticked off because they want a chance to debate him in a public forum. We all know what Rybak is really doing: Running for governor. Such is the life of a candidate who is trying to run for two offices at once. You usually fail at something and it's only fair to point out a candidate that is so overconfident in their reelection they don't really bother talking about the future of the city he will probably only run for another year.

Rybak was yet again a no-show for a public access cable taping at Minneapolis Television Network. His campaign says he was too busy making phone calls to voters. Right.

Papa John Kolstad, endorsed by the Republican and Independence party, called out Rybak in the Star Tribune on his lack of accessibility during the campaign: "Elections are about people who are in office to be accountable," he said, "to come to the citizens and come to the challengers and to talk about what's going on in their city, and if they can answer those adequately, they should be reelected.

Al Flowers laid it out plain and simple: "Here you got a mayor who has not come and told you what his vision is for the next four years because one of them is to be governor. That's why he's not here."

Rybak's campaign says he will be on Minnesota Public Radio with his challengers, but that planned forum will be less than 24 hours before the polls open.

Political science experts says he is playing a wise game, but it can backfire. Rybak can't get roughed up or cornered if he isn't there, which provides less fuel for opponents at the gubernatorial level. Unfortunately voters can call him out for not caring about the city and only thinking about higher office.

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