Grand Forks paper likens Emmer to Saddam’s spokesperson

Given the poles-apart candidacies of Mark Dayton and Tom Emmer, I expect to see most mainstream newspapers split the difference and endorse Tom Horner this fall. (Sunday’s Strib featured not one, but three staff-written opinion pieces the Horner website could gleefully reprint.)

But from Minnesota’s western border comes a truly white-hot editorial denunciation — in this case, of Emmer. Grand Forks Herald editorial editor Tom Dennis (whose coverage area includes East Grand Forks, Mn.) writes:

If GOP candidate Tom Emmer loses the race for governor in Minnesota, it will be for one key reason: His utter — and utterly baffling — refusal to specify where he’d make his spending cuts in order to balance the state budget. …

2010 is a year of Republican tide, and that almost certainly means there are a great many centrists and independents who are looking for reasons to support the GOP candidate.

Right now, they’re not finding those reasons. When Emmer speaks on the budget, he sounds deeper in denial than Saddam Hussein’s famous spokesman, the one who kept insisting on Saddam’s genius and triumph even as coalition tanks rolled up outside his ministry’s door.

Woo — I can’t remember the last time the Strib delivered a gubernatorial butt-kick like that.

As I’ve noted previously, Fargo-based Forum Communications owns more Minnesota dailies than anyone else, and its management is considered fairly conservative. Come endorsement time, Fargo execs make the pick in statewide races, and those selections are transmitted via the local papers (though editorial page editors can supply their own reasoning).

During the campaign, the local editors have more autonomy, so this may just be Dennis’ view. It probably shouldn’t come as a surprise that a journalist fiercely advocates disclosure, no matter who the candidate is.

Emmer — who swears he’ll release the rest of his budget within two weeks — could deliver policy prescriptions that return him to the Herald’s good graces, and it’s possible he’s never been far from Fargo’s heart.

But somewhere, Tom Horner has to be smiling.

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Comments (11)

  1. Submitted by Kathleen M. Lake, MA on 09/08/2010 - 04:29 pm.

    What has happened to the state of my birth, Minnesota? Tom Emmer has blood on his hands. He is a very bad man and he is responsible for creating an environment where in recently …three (count them … three) Minnesota teens would rather take their own lives than be bullied anymore in school. Connect the dots Mr. Emmer (who openly admits contributing to a hate group that advocates the murder of gay people). Connect the dots… you and people like you have encouraged the persecution of innocent kids. I am sure that those teens who tortured these gay kids to death felt justified even righteous. You, Mr. Emmer, have blood on your hands. And so does Target.

  2. Submitted by Danny McConnell on 09/08/2010 - 05:48 pm.

    Stay classy Kathleen!

  3. Submitted by Stan Daniels on 09/08/2010 - 06:21 pm.

    I really hope that David’s analysis of ads during the campaign doesn’t turn into a bunch of comments like Kathleen’s. If I wanted to read campaign rhetoric I’d go elsewhere.

    Anything that can be done to keep the discussions connected to David’s postings would be appreciated.

    My bet is the Grand Forks paper editorial will show up soon on a media outlet near you. Should create some interesting discussion.

  4. Submitted by Hal Sanders on 09/08/2010 - 06:42 pm.

    You’re spot on, Stan. Also, the linkage between MinnPost.Com and Dayton is quite wearisome.

  5. Submitted by John Jordan on 09/08/2010 - 08:58 pm.

    Someone’s got to say it; Kathleen’s comment was idiotic. Now I’m going to go to Target and spend a few bucks.

  6. Submitted by Greg Kapphahn on 09/08/2010 - 09:55 pm.

    Of course you already knew, Kathleen, that those with blood on their hands always seek to change the subject (in their waking hours). We can only assume that sometimes, in their sleep, they wander around, going through the motions of washing those same, bloodstained hands and utter those immortal words, “Out! Out! Damned spot!”

  7. Submitted by Bill Gleason on 09/09/2010 - 08:38 am.

    The piece in the NoDak paper was outstanding. One of the things that really needs discussing is the 5th paragraph:

    “Plus, in a time of national recession and high unemployment, there is zero chance that Minnesota’s private sector is going to generate tens of thousands of new jobs in time to dramatically hike tax revenue numbers, regardless of the tax-and-regulation climate that the next governor creates. Why does Emmer keep pretending otherwise?”

    No matter what your priorities or political preferences, we need a really rational approach to business tax climate. Emmer does not know his ear from his elbow in these matters – “F” from MedCity News on biotech development. Simply chopping business taxes is not going to solve our problem and that seems to be all he can propose. He’s also waffled badly on the angel investment tax credit.

    Horner’s economic plans seem to be favored by most economists – and I say this as a Dayton supporter.

    Unfortunately for Mr. Horner, his chances of being elected are zilch.

    So what to do? Get the big brains from business, academia, and the lege (Gunyou) together after Dayton is elected so sort this out.

    I await a rain of criticism swiftly.

  8. Submitted by B Maginnis on 09/09/2010 - 08:59 am.

    Another nail in “journalism”‘s coffin.

  9. Submitted by Jeff Severns Guntzel on 09/09/2010 - 09:04 am.

    Wow, Mohammed Saeed al-Sahhaf makes the Grand Forks Herald AND MinnPost!

  10. Submitted by r batnes on 09/09/2010 - 10:26 am.

    BD Maginnis says:
    “Another nail in “journalism”‘s coffin.”

    When it doesn’t jive with YOUR opinion, right BD?

  11. Submitted by B Maginnis on 09/14/2010 - 09:19 pm.

    Uh, no – when an obviously delirious hayseed “journalist” from North Dakota makes a ridiculous comparison.

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