Although he is a Republican and we are concerned about the enormous imbalance of power in this state, we gave Dave Buhler real consideration for a couple of reasons. First, a trusted friend/politico ranked him 3 or 4 out of the initial 10. We also like Buhler's support for TRAX to the airport, and some of his vision for downtown. But a letter in the Tribune yesterday got us thinking. Jake Parkinson wrote:
Now that the true story is out about the skirmish between Mayor Rocky Anderson and Dell Loy Hansen, City Councilman Dave Buhler owes the mayor an apology. Buhler was predictably quick to personally attack the mayor before anyone knew what had taken place. Buhler was once again defending bad big-business practice. Hansen's fleecing the city out of millions in Redevelopment Association funding is a big deal. You won't see a sign in my yard. I don't like Dave Buhler.We don't know about the alleged fleecing, although now that we are reminded that it was Hansen's company whose employees "donated" multiple $2,000 bonuses to D.A. Lohra Miller's campaign, nothing would surprise us. But we agree with Parkinson that Buhler was too quick to jump on the Rocky-hater bandwagon. In the initial story on the confrontation, Buhler told the Trib, "Hopefully, the mayor hasn't just screwed up a great thing for downtown." Without knowing the facts, he just assumed it was Rocky's fault. Buhler's quote can't be excused as not really taking a position; we didn't hear him say, "Hopefully, Dell Loy Hansen didn't lose it and do something crazy."
As a city council member, Buhler presumably could have asked to see the security video, later released to the public, that clearly shows Hansen as the aggressor, and Rocky actually trying to avoid a confrontation until Hansen finally grabs his arm. That's when Rocky uttered his famous line, "Don't touch me. I'll kick your ass!" (Sigh. We want a mayor who, when harassed and then grabbed, will threaten to kick the assailant's ass. Do any of the remaining candidates have it in them? We worry about that.)
Instead of saying, "I can't comment until I've seen the video, or until I've talked to the security officer, or until I actually have a clue," Buhler leaped at the chance to dis Rocky. Mayor Anderson annoys us on a regular basis, but we don't need another knee-jerk Rocky basher in office. We already have enough of those. Dave Buhler is okay on the city council; let's keep him there.