Follow up to SW Journal story about Commissioner Bourn

The following letter-to-the-editor appeared in the April 19, 2010 issue of the Southwest Journal:


I am writing the Southwest Journal to point out that the article “Panel Fines Bourn …” did not tell the whole story regarding the complaint filed by Park Board candidate Meg Forney against Brad Bourn who won the election. It failed to quote the State Judicial Panel’s conclusion, which is the other half of the story.

Forney, the runner-up, was attempting to prove that she lost the Park Board’s District 6 seat because of Bourn’s “false endorsements.”

The panel, however, recognized the validity of Brad Bourn’s other endorsements, including the Minneapolis DFL endorsement, and that he had campaigned hard. It did not determine that Bourn’s false claim of endorsements by Sen. Scott Dibble and Rep. Frank Hornstein caused Forney to lose the election.

The Judicial Panel stated that it was “unable to conclude that Forney would have been elected had Bourn not claimed the false endorsements. The evidence at the hearing demonstrated that Bourn campaigned for the seat for many months and received the endorsement of the Minneapolis DFL as well as that of other prominent organizations and individuals. Likewise, the Panel is not convinced by Forney’s contention that the effect of the false endorsements was somehow compounded by the use of instant run-off voting in this election.”

Yes, Bourn was fined, but the rest of the story was that Forney was unable to convince the Panel that Bourn was to blame for her loss.

Arlene Fried
Co-founder of Park Watch