No legal disclaimer on political literature

To the editor
I just read that North Branch Mayor Elect Kirsten Kennedy’s campaign has filed a campaign violation against Charles Duncan, from Forest Lake, for violating Minnesota Statute 211B.04. The statute requires that on all political literature the person or committee paying for the literature must list themselves or their organization and a contact address. This violation is a misdemeanor.
A very hateful campaign piece went out via mail against candidate Kirsten Kennedy on Friday, Oct. 31, just five days before the Nov. 4 election. The violation isn’t related to what was on the literature – it’s related to the fact that it was sent out five days before the election without a legal disclaimer. This will be heard before a panel of three judges from the Minnesota Office of Administrative Hearings, if the probability of a violation is determined.
The question for North Branch residents has to be why would someone from Forest Lake put out campaign literature against a candidate for mayor of North Branch? As it turns out, Charles Duncan works in North Branch at Bullseye Training Service LLC, part of Bullseye Shooting Range and Self Storage. Interestingly, Bullseye Shooting Range and Self Storage is owned by North Branch Councilmember Joyce Borchardt and her husband, North Branch Planning Commissioner Tom Borchardt.
So Charles Duncan lives in Forest Lake and works for the Borchardts. I guess that’s the connection to why a Forest Lake resident would do a literature piece against a candidate for the mayor of North Branch. I wonder who really paid for this questionable literature piece in the first place. I believe this case will go forward because it’s a clear violation of 211B.04. Are the Borchardts behind this literature? We’ll see what happens in court.

Laurie Warner
North Branch

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