Rybak and Kelliher are treating it like a two person race

The two top vote getters in Tuesday’s DFL straw poll are working to distinguish themselves from one another.

Minneapolis Mayor R.T. Rybak and Minnesota House Speaker Margaret Anderson Kelliher took slight and not so slight shots at each other when they were asked on TPT’s Almanac why are they electable.

Rybak said the State Capitol is torn apart and needs new leadership:

“People want results but right now they feel the Capitol, filled with good people, but is not getting things done for the state. We’re in an economic calamity, the state budget is in chaos and they want to get results.

People are going to go into the voting booth not only voting on their jobs but also on their future. I think the good news is it’s a race for an executive position and I’m the one chief executive in this race. I managed the largest city in the state through a massive crisis. We put people to work and that’s what I think we have to do in the state.”

Meanwhile, Kelliher highlighted her accomplishments in the 2008 legislative session which she called “one of the most effective in twenty years” (transportation bill, mental health reform, renewable energy standard and changes to the health care system):

“I have a record of proven effective leadership, bringing people around the table in a tough situation.

With all due respect to the mayor, he works in a town where everyone pretty much agrees with each other. And the fact of the matter is he is also in a weak mayor system, which is not his fault but the reality is he’s in charge of a couple of things.

In our case, I’m both an executive and a legislator as the elected Speaker of the House.”

Both argued that they could win votes in rural Minnesota and explained the campaign finance issues in the past six months.

Video isn’t up yet but I’ll link to it once it is… You can find the video here.

  • Kelliher sure crows a lot. It’s not very becoming. I see Dayton and Rybak fighting it out neck to neck in the Primary. They will be the main contenders.

  • Chris

    Unbecoming? All candidates brag about their records and inflate their accomplishments.

    For example, Rybak likes to talk about Minneapolis’ unemployment rate being below the state and the suburbs. What he doesn’t mention is that he’s combining all the suburbs together and comparing Minneapolis to one big average rate. According to DEED, the other suburban counties have unemployment rates at or slightly below Minneapolis, except for Anoka, which is high enough that it skews the average rate up. As for Minneapolis vs the state, Minneapolis’ unemployment rate has always fluctuated above and below the state’s rate at pretty regular intervals. It did that when Rybak was mayor, when Sayles-Belton was mayor, and when Fraser was mayor.

    All that said, I have to agree that Rybak would probably be a stronger candidate than Kelliher in a general election, even though neither of them are my first choice.