St. Paul mayoral forum is a clown show [VIDEO]
Not the Onion: Mayoral candidate Sharon Anderson believes bubble wrap -- yes, bubble wrap -- can help prevent school shootings.
Pioneer Press screengrab
The Minneapolis mayoral race is pretty serious business -- unless you're Jeff Wagner, of course.
But over in St. Paul? The city's first and only mayoral forum was more akin to a comedy routine than a serious debate.
Chris Coleman faces little serious competition in his bid to win a third term as St. Paul mayor. He does, however, face a significant amount of unserious competition.
Here's a transcript of an exchange Coleman had with perennial mayoral candidate Sharon Anderson at one point during last night's debate:
ANDERSON: St. Paul and Minneapolis are like Sodom and Gomorrah as far as I'm concerned. Really. And I'm a straight person, I'm just so upset over a lot of different things. I'm gearing up to run for attorney general again, you know.
COLEMAN : Sharon, it's just a typical politician -- you haven't even gotten elected mayor and you're already running for attorney general. [Laughter from the audience and Anderson]
Anderson then volunteered some biographical details before offering up her unique solution to the problem of school shootings and her opinion on "Cyley Mirus":
ANDERSON: I'm a product of St. Paul Central High School. I'm not going to tell you when I graduated -- well, in 1956. I'm 74 and a half. How did I get here and how did I get so old so fast?!
These shootings in the schools! Let the principal -- or, let the school teachers have a gun. Or let 'em have a camera, which is a gun stronger than whatever. And the other is bubble wrap. [She holds up some bubble wrap] This is therapy for kids! You know, for me too, I'm good on the computer with PDF files. I'm the wrecking ball -- I'm not Cyley Mirus -- but I'm the wrecking ball of Coleman's demolitions. I think [Miley would] be more beautiful if she had more clothes on. [Laughter from everyone] Anyhow.... but I gotta stop...
Then, toward the end of the forum, another candidate, St. Paul street maintenance worker Kurt Dornfeld, offered up this cringe-worthy characterization of his campaign:
DORNFELD: It's funny -- I was talking to a friend of mine the other day, and I said my campaign has become like when Adam first saw Eve. He told her, 'you better back up because I'm not sure how big this thing is gonna get.' With that I'll close.
COLEMAN: Oh, God. You didn't just say that [Laughter]. So anyhow...
Here's video of all that:
And here, via the Pioneer Press, is a bit more about last night's ridiculousness:
Anderson, who blames the city for losing her Summit Avenue home in the 1980s and car in 2006, gave answers Thursday that sometimes veered off topic: Asked about the state of the city's infrastructure, she said she supported the legalization of marijuana and prostitution.
She also... compared light rail to Nazi train cars carrying Holocaust victims to concentration camps...
Asked about his experience with diversity issues, Dornfeld said he had once participated in a county youth hockey program for low-income children, but had limited other experience.
"I don't even know where I'm going with this," he told the crowd. "I'm nervous as all heck."
Coleman's most serious challenger -- and the only other one on the ballot besides Anderson and Dornfeld -- is real estate agent Tim Holden, whose office is behind the Love Doctor erotica shop on University Avenue (Love Doctor is one of Holden's tenants).
This is the first election where the St. Paul mayor will be decided by ranked-choice voting, prompting us to wonder -- who the hell would you put as your third choice after Coleman and Holden?
-- Follow Aaron Rupar on Twitter at @atrupar. Got a tip? Drop him a line at email@example.com.
Get the This Week's Top Stories Newsletter
Every week we collect the latest news, music and arts stories — along with film and food reviews and the best things to do this week — so that you’ll never miss City Pages' biggest stories.