Politics Posts

Sulfide Mining Debate + The Holidays = Watch This


Surely sulfide mining is close to the top of the things Minnesotans can disagree about with family and friends as we enter the holidaze. This two-minute video depicts one way the outcome of the PolyMet question could play out. Great for captive audiences who are too stuffed to resist. Enjoy!

Duluth City Council votes to oppose Trans Pacific Partnership

Thanks to the Duluth City Council for voting 8 to 1 to oppose the Trans Pacific Partnership. The DNT article is here. 

The TPP has been negotiated in secret for years, and has been called “NAFTA on steroids” and a “corporate coup d’ etat.” If you’ve never heard of it that’s no coincidence. It will offshore jobs, raise the price of medicines, threaten net neutrality, threaten environmental protections, undermine human rights, roll back Wall Street reforms, and perhaps most frighteningly of all it will establish unelected tribunals whose courts will take precedence over U.S. and other national court systems with regard to trade disputes. Laws passed by democracies will no longer be the law of the land. This is an assault on our republican form of government. Please read more about it here and here.

Please email Senator Al Franken and Senator Amy Kobuchar.

Duluth 2015 General Election Results

Duluth Election 2015 Emily Larson Chuck Horton

Emily Larson cruises to victory in the mayoral race. Elissa Hansen, Noah Hobbs, Gary Anderson and Em Westerlund are new city councilors. Alanna Oswald, David Kirby and Nora Sandstad join the school board.

With all 34 precincts reporting …

Duluth Mayor
Emily Larson – 15,352 | 72%
Chuck Horton – 5,862 | 27%
Write in – 125 | 1%

Video Archive: Gary Doty wins second term


For your Election Day amusement we take a trip to 1995.

Twenty years ago, Gary Doty defeated challenger Herb Bergson to earn his second term as Duluth mayor. Doty served a total of three terms, holding office from 1992 to 2004. He did not seek a fourth term. Bergson became mayor in 2004, defeating Charlie Bell.

The other Horton for Mayor song


The “Fighting for Duluth” song posted previously on PDD drew a fair amount of attention, and plenty of speculation that it was created as satire. The song in this post seems to have the full endorsement of Duluth mayoral candidate Chuck Horton. According to the credits, the music, lyrics and vocals are by Joe Tuttle, the slideshow was produced by Otiz Mac, and the “message and video are approved by Chuck Horton.”

Note: Normally PDD would not post a campaign ad as content, but in this case the argument can be made that there is entertainment value. And maybe a case for equal time. Let the battle of campaign songs begin.

“Fighting for Duluth”


A very unofficial Chuck Horton campaign song made by an anonymous local musician.

Question 3: Method for setting fee paid to Duluth city councilors

Duluth Charter Amendment - Method for setting fee paid to city councilors

After publishing the Duluth 2015 General Election Sample Ballot, a question arose. We’ve been hearing a lot about ranked-choice voting and Lakeside liquor sales, but what’s the deal with question #3?

Duluth 2015 General Election Sample Ballot

Duluth MN General Election Ballot 2015

Mr. Nice For Mayor


Join the campaign here.

Mr. Nice Mayoral Campaign Event at Bent Paddle during Bradfest


Continuing his run for mayor, Mr. Nice gives the opening toast for the Bradfest fun run/bar crawl.

Join the campaign here.

Know Your Duluth Liquor Laws!


Over the next week or so, Zenith City Online is publishing five separate stories on the history of Duluth’s liquor laws so that voters and elected officials can better understand the historic context of the issue they face in this November’s citywide referendum. I have included links to all five stories below so you can read them now. This issue is embedded in misinformation and myth. In fact, former Mayor Herb Bergson recently told Zenith City Online he vetoed a 2007 City Council resolution to request the repeal of the 1891 law because he believes that all of Lakeside and Lester Park was a gift to Duluth from the philanthropic Marshall sisters (Julia and Caroline) and that Myrtle Marshall, who fought to keep the law in place in 1973, was one of those sisters—none of which is true. So here’s a chance to catch up on Duluth liquor history so you can make a well-informed decision on this issue.

Mayor Ness banned from Labor Temple’s Wellstone Hall for life

Mayor Ness at Radisson

From the Sept. 16 issue of Labor World:

Without opposition a motion was made, seconded, and carried to ban Don Ness from the Duluth Labor Temple’s Wellstone Hall for life.

Duluth 2015 Primary Election Results

Duluth Election 2015 Emily Larson Chuck Horton

With 41 out of 41 precincts reporting, Emily Larson and Chuck Horton are the winning candidates in the mayoral race, advancing to the General Election in November. Jay Fosle and Janet Kennedy advance in the Fifth District City Council race.

Duluth Mayor
(Top two candidates advance to General Election)
Emily Larson – 5,456 | 67.32%
Chuck Horton – 1,505 | 18.57%
Howie Hanson – 732 | 9.03%
James Mattson – 177 | 2.18%
John Socha – 111 | 1.37%
John Howard Evans – 51 | 0.63%
Thomas Cooper – 45 | 0.56%
Robert D. Schieve – 27 | 0.33%

Fifth District Duluth City Councilor
(Top two candidates advance to General Election)
Jay Fosle – 945 | 56.08%
Janet Kennedy – 671 | 39.82%
Allan Beaulier – 44 | 2.61%
Derrick Ellis – 25 | 1.48%

At-large Duluth School Board Member
(Top two candidates advance to General Election)
Renee K. VanNett – 3,351 | 44.70%
Alanna Oswald – 2,437 | 32.51%
Jim H. Unden – 1,708 | 22.79%

District Two Duluth School Board Member
(Top two candidates advance to General Election)
David Kirby – 1,044 | 58.65%
Charles Obije – 461 | 25.9%
Jane Hammerstrom Hoffman – 275 | 15.45%

You can’t put a campaign sign there

you can't put a campaign sign thereOne of the more clever Facebook pages of recent times has to be “You can’t put a campaign sign there,” which launched on Sept. 9. The candidates probably didn’t place the signs themselves, of course, but it’s still amusing.

After three days, Chuck Horton leads the race with seven allegedly illegal sign placements, followed by Howie Hanson and Karl Spring, who each have just one. (That’s just counting the gallery images; it looks like there are also a few “visitor posts” that aren’t in the gallery.)

That’s quite a lead for Horton, but at this stage Perfect Duluth Day’s prognosticators still think it’s too close to call.

Duluth 2015 Primary Election Sample Ballot

Duluth Primary Ballot 2015

Keep in mind:

District candidates will appear on the ballot only in the specified districts. Duluth City Council District 5 represents West Duluth and neighborhoods farther west. Duluth School Board District 2 represents the Endion, Congdon, Chester Park and Kenwood areas.