The Atom Bomb Part 1, School Board Chair Seliga-Punyko’s scheme to stay in office without facing…

…an election decided by the voters.

Yesterday’s DNT Opinion page had two editorials relating to our elections in Minnesota. The second pointed out how messing around with them leads to unexpected consequences:

Minnesotans learned long ago not to worry about politics or think about elections until at least the state fair or Labor Day. That was supposed to change in 2010 when primaries were moved earlier, to August, to give absentee voters, especially military members stationed overseas, ample time to fill out and return ballots.

August in Minnesota is a terrible time to have an election, Secretary of State Steve Simon said in an interview last week with the News Tribune Opinion page. You know, we had 10 percent turnout last year (for the primary), which was weird.

So, to make it convenient for political parties we changed the date of the primary to before the school year started and got a jaw droppingly low voter turnout. As the editorial proceeds to explain this may be remedied with a June primary which would take place the month before local candidates for offices like the School Board even file for office!

And the editors of the Tribune had the School Board elections very much in mind in their first editorial:

With three School Board seats, five of nine City Council seats and, in the highest-profile race of all this fall, the mayor’s office all up for grabs, there’s an urgent need and strong desire for quality candidates right now.

Except that Chair Judy Seliga-Punyko is sneakily trying her damnedest and to bypass this fall’s election and get a freebie year on the Board before she faces voters again in 2016. I understand why. She no doubt hopes that voters will have had a year to forget the sorry soap opera she helped concoct to remove an unwanted school board member despite his having been elected easily in 2013.

Seliga-Punyko has shown a blithe disregard for elections since she was elected nine years ago based on her conviction that once elected the School Board can do whatever it wants because it was elected to make such decisions.

A few posts ago I uploaded an email I sent to someone who criticized recent blog posts for going well past the acceptable commentary of a “gadfly” or an “iconoclast.” I told him that he was mistaken. I said my comments on this blog were really my barely concealed contempt and outrage for the actions of our current board majority. I sent him a list ten abuses, A through J, that I found unconscionable. What I didn’t tell him was that, in my opinion, the primary author of most of these actions was not just the School Board but Judy Seliga-Punyko. I pointed out in a later post that the last item on the list, J, (only the latest and most egregious) was the “Atom Bomb” I’ve been teasing my readers about. It too is jaw dropping.

Judy Seliga-Punyko and some of her confederates have discovered a method by which she can give herself a fifth year without facing the voters this year to add to her four-year elective term. Gallingly, she is attempting to do this while trying to deprive Art Johnston of his office either by:

1. Removing him from the last two years of his current term or

2. if necessary, by preventing him from getting elected again this year should she succeed in removing him from office by changing the date of this year’s election when he could once again run for office.

I say “confederates” because Judy had to have had some help as our school board has glided into the commode this year. Judy is surely one of the prime agents behind this plot but perhaps with the unwitting majority of the Board at her side. Certainly she has been aided and abetted by some alert administrators.

Based on past experience and not so subtle clues from the last school board meeting I’d say that her right hand in this has been our Clerk, Rosie Loeffler-Kemp. I’m not sure who else is part of the conspiracy but over the next few posts I’ll attempt to make clear who I suspect of trying to pull off this indecency – this “atom bomb.”

There will be more to come but I’ve got a court hearing to attend.

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