It's rare for the chairs of the Olmsted County Republicans and the Olmsted County DFL to team up. But the two have issued a joint statement after a rash of sign thefts and vandalism that has plagued candidates on both sides of the aisle.
Last week, I got a call from House District 25B Republican candidate Melissa Valeriano frustrated that one of her large signs along West Circle Drive had been stolen. This happened after it had previously been cut down and tossed on the ground. Also stolen was a sign for the Citizens Organized to Stop the Tax or (COST), which opposed extended the Rochester city sales tax. After the incident, Valeriano reached out to her DFL opponent, Rep. Kim Norton, who told her that some of her signs have been vandalized.
Here's the joint statement sent out by Republican Bruce Kaskubar and Democrat Lynn Wilson sent out the following statement:
"Democrat, Republican, independent, or other, we all want a better America. We have different ideas about how that should be accomplished. In the midst of campaign season it is common to have campaign signs defaced, put down, or removed. As leaders of our respective political parties, we ask one and all to consider some undeniable truths:
— our political futures should be decided by ideas
— freedom of expression is guaranteed us in our Constitution
— diversity of experience and opinion forms a rich community
— mutual respect is the essence of good citizenship
We encourage all the people of Olmsted county to give voice to their ideas and, equally, to respect others' rights to voice theirs."
Bruce Kaskubar, Chair, Republican Party of Olmsted County
Lynn Wilson, Chair, Democratic Party of Olmsted County