Brooklyn, NY native Chris Fields moved to Minneapolis in April 2011. Unfortunately, in May the North Side got clobbered with a tornado. Well, he's had enough and he's not going to take it anymore.
So he's running for Congress against Rep. Keith Ellison (DFL-Mpls) and got the Minneapolis Star Tribune to publish his factually-challenged rant.
When a tornado ripped through the North Side of Minneapolis a year ago, it revealed just how ineffective our leaders have been when it comes to communities that need help the most.
Even before the tornado, there were massive signs of decay on the North Side, and in other parts of the city as well. While I live in Minneapolis, my home is not in the North Side.
So the self-proclaimed "Savior of the North Side" doesn't live there and hasn't lived in Minnesota all that long.
Let's see what he has to say about how things ought to be done:
In the age of smartphones and smart cars, it's time for smart leadership. Smart leadership is more than making a speech or writing an article for the opinion page. Smart leadership is independent and collaborative; it is cooperative and not corrosive. It uses a convincing velvet glove far more than it uses a cold steel hammer.
Selfless leadership puts people before politics. Neither ideology nor political parties repair homes after a natural disaster; communities do. Focused leadership makes needed resources available through relentless advocacy for constituents.
That's pretty vague.
Judging from his content free website, he's not a teabagger or a Paulbot. He supports boilerplate GOP issues like ending Medicare and economic austerity. He thinks education is good, but has no specific proposals.
When is the last time a Republican put people before politics?
Republicans in Congress nearly send the US into default. Republicans want to end Medicare. They want to repeal Obamacare and all of the good things that have happened as a result. They want to go back to Bush Economics and drive the economy off the cliff again.
But his main lie in his rant is that Keith didn't do anything to help the North Side. Here's what Keith did:
By the afternoon of Monday, May 23, the Office of Rep. Keith Ellison had contacted the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), the offices of Gov. Mark Dayton and Mayor R.T. Rybak's office to coordinate an effective response. He also toured the Minneapolis Metro areas that were damaged, including a visit to families who were staying at the FEC-National Armory. Rep. Ellison and the Minnesota delegation worked with Gov. Dayton and President Obama declared the area eligible for federal disaster assistance within weeks.
Wait? What? Keith was collaborating with others to bring aid to the North Side? Chris Fields would have you believe otherwise.
Furthermore, Keith got an amendment successfully added to the Homeland Security bill that protected MN first responders from cuts Republicans wanted to make:
The U.S. House of Representatives today voted to reverse a measure that would have cut important funding for first responders in all but 10 U.S. Cities. Congressman Keith Ellison (D-Minn.) cosponsored a successful amendment to protect funds for Minneapolis in the FY 2012 Homeland Security Appropriations bill (HR 2017).
Rep. Ellison fought for the amendment because it would have shut out mid-sized cities like Minneapolis from vital Homeland Security assistance under the Urban Area Security Initiative (UASI). Minneapolis uses these funds to train and equip first responders, support a state-of-the-art emergency dispatch system, and protect the city's water supply. According to the City of Minneapolis, UASI Grant program funding has been essential to the ability of the City to manage complex incidents such as the 35W Bridge collapse, the 2008 RNC and the 2009 Downtown/South Minneapolis Tornado and the recent 2011 Tornado in North Minneapolis.
The problems affecting the North Side existed long before Keith entered politics.
If anything, the Republicans causing the economy to collapse under George W. Bush did more damage to the North Side. As a result of Republicans unemployment skyrocketed everywhere and foreclosures affected every single block in North Minneapolis.
Republicans have done nothing to fix the foreclosure crisis they caused.