St. Paul's Dave Thune keeps council on edge

  • Article by: ROCHELLE OLSON , Star Tribune
  • Updated: July 3, 2012 - 11:00 PM

Business community unhappy with his delays, unpredictability.

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rspenceJul. 3, 1211:35 PM

Dave has always been a stand up guy and St. Paul is going to miss his leadership.

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pompensteinJul. 4, 12 1:42 AM

I'm a progressive and can't stand Thune. He's the type of elitist liberal I encountered in Seattle and Vancouver: progressive except when it comes to his own community. He screams ad nauseam for things like urban renewal, and mass transit, but when it comes to his own community involved in a comprehensive broad-base plan, he tightens up like some self absorbed and selfish right wing suburbanite. He hates noise, and has contempt for successful small businesses (e.g. Cosettas). Quite frankly, this type of politician is just as harmful as the far right-full of big ideas, hot air, but never fully considers the true costs of anything to create his delusional utopia, and never expects his own isolated community of self-righteous and self-congratulatory group of friends to make the same sacrifices many working class people do that live in St.Paul. I support taxes, strong public services, and public investment, but there is a fine line, and all communities should share that commitment, especially the the affluent communities of Grand Ave and the western portion of St. Paul that promote such initiatives and hold such influence(I know the difference between West St. Paul and western St. Paul).

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gilly47Jul. 4, 12 9:42 AM

Then there's St. Paul's West Side. Dave's always been long on process and less so on results, which is alright if you're holding up Jerry Trooien's "Mythica" project until sanity sets in; but less so if your community turns out in big numbers to support re-building a municipal stair (Ohio St. going down to Harriett Island). What I refuse to put up with is any more verbal abuse from his desk-pounding aide, Lundgren.

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caspercat1Jul. 4, 1210:05 AM

Apparently the writer thinks that working for neighborhood issues means " bowing to the whims of a small but vocal contingent" (Of course that doesn't apply to the Chamber of Commerce) and doesn't mention that Dave's protest against the Republican Convention "in his own ward" was based on valid civil liberty concerns. I guess most of us in the Second Ward also need to be more fashion conscious in our electoral decisions. How could we possibly have elected Dave seven times given that he wears Hawaiian shirts to Council meetings? What were we thinking? Where were our priorities? We'll never know from this article because the reporter doesn't ever talk to any average Second Ward citizens, following her usual pattern. Talking to the same, established sources is so much easier than considering why anyone - like Dave Thune or neighborhood activists - might step in front of difficult issues and powerful opponents. I, for one, am still very glad there is someone in City Hall who remembers what democracy is supposed to look like. Happy 4th of July, Rochelle!

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jugglerJul. 4, 1210:41 AM

I live in Ward 2. Maybe I should run for his spot. I'm just a programmer, nobody famous nor wealthy. I don't have a network or friends that "I owe" kickback too. I need to work for a living so I would not be in office forever as a hobby like some of these politicians. I believe in people that work. Those that don't need to work. Those that can't work are the only ones we should be helping out. To help promote people working you have to promote a pro business environment and I would do that. Otherwise you have what we have today, anti-business environment and more unemployed people than we've seen since the 70's. Toss my hat into the ring, get Thune out.

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gracekellyJul. 4, 1211:12 AM

This article SO represents the Chamber of Commerce's opinions. The Chamber of Commerce basically just wants free handouts from the taxpayers money. A balanced article would have represented the constant neighborhood issues that the Wild Onion or the patios also represent. Do you want a constant loud drunken patio party happening very close to your house? The Wild Onion does not take care of its patrons. Dave Thune is a great city council person who looks at neighborhood interests first. The elections prove that neighborhoods know this even when the Star & Tribune writes an article for the Chamber of Commerce.

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andydriscollJul. 4, 1212:05 PM

A simple balance of quotes and comments from a much wider variety of voices in the community that patronizes the businesses who feel free to dump on Mr. Thune would have given this article some credibility, but the narrow range of consulting by Rocky Olson has diminished her standing as a journalist. Where was the editor on this? Couldn’t be that the StarTribune is seeking stories to tamp down public input into business ventures that would milk St. Paul dry on behalf of profits affected by regulations that protect the rest of us, could it?

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elephantgirlJul. 4, 12 1:57 PM

Many in Ward 2 won't miss Dave. I think the only reason he lasted this long, is people that don't know what's going in tend to vote or "familiar" names. Thank goodness we'll have a new voice in St. Paul. Dave has refused to answer email and voicemal messages and in general has his own agenda. No one else seems to matter. We won't miss you Dave.

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italynetteJul. 4, 12 7:12 PM

Dave is a decent guy, but hedges on too many things and isn't a reliable person and picks and chooses who he helps depending on their friendships. He should have retired at the end of his last term and let someone else take charge and make even better changes.

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stpaul5Jul. 5, 12 7:17 AM

I live in Ward 2 and have tried over the years to get help from his office for neighborhood issues. Not once did anyone in his office ever return a call or email. It has been very frustrating trying to get someone else voted in who would actually respond to our needs. He does accomplish some things (he's not a deadbeat) but apparently only for his cronies or his own benefit. I'm so glad to see this article bring this out into the light. I am on some neighborhood FB pages where he and his aide post very snarky comments. Ick.

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