Who is Carol Becker?
Carol Becker is a member of the Minneapolis Board of Estimate and Taxation.
What is the Board of Estimate and Taxation (BET)?
The BET sets the city’s maximum tax levy and approves bond sales.
There are six members. Two members are elected directly to the BET by voters; they receive nominal pay for each meeting (think of it like a glorified volunteer position). The other four members are: the city’s Mayor, the City Council President, a Parks commissioner, and the City Council’s Ways & Means Committee chair.
Does Carol Becker show bad judgment in performing her job on the BET?
Here’s one example: at an April 11, 2018 meeting of the BET, Becker spoke against a motion that would allow the city to refinance its Target Center debt, thereby saving money. It’s important to remember that deciding against refinancing debt is not the same thing as making the debt disappear. Carol Becker’s preference in this case was to cost the city lots of money.
Because Council President Lisa Bender was absent for that meeting, the BET lacked the votes to override Becker’s opposition. And because the matter was particularly urgent, a special meeting was held the following week, where the motion was passed by a 5-1 vote. Becker was the only “no” vote.
Why would a self-described “wonk” take a position that would cost the city money? It might be because TV news cameras were there to record video of Carol Becker appearing to take a heroic stand against the notion of stadium subsidies. Fortunately for Becker nobody pays attention to BET, and the resulting FOX 9 story provided no context for the actual issue being discussed at the meeting. (Note: the decision to subsidize a sports billionaire had already been made years before.)
Didn’t Carol Becker try to steal the name of a journalist’s website?
In 2018, she filed trademark and business registrations for the name of the news website wedgelive.com. She spent a non-trivial amount of money (hundreds of dollars in fees at least — not including whatever additional legal expenses she may have incurred) to try to harass a journalist out of existence. If you haven’t heard this very strange story, you should read it.
The journalist sued to defend himself and make her go away. In a settlement, Becker acknowledged she did not own the name “Wedge LIVE.” Becker also agreed that she would “never assert any claim to these marks in the future.”
Does Carol Becker consistently make decisions that do harm to herself, the political causes she cares about, and the City of Minneapolis?
Yes. It’s clear that Carol Becker can’t be trusted to act in her own best interest or anyone else’s.
For example, in 2018 she repeatedly shouted “have some balls” at members of both the City Council and the Planning Commission.
What did John Edwards do to provoke Carol Becker?
He ran against her as a write-in candidate in 2017.
What were candidate John Edwards’ campaign themes when he ran against Carol Becker in 2017?
- Becker, in an election year stunt, showed terrible judgment by suing the Mayor over the budget. Becker represented herself in court, she lost — and then claimed she had actually won the lawsuit.
- In response to corporate money flooding the city council election, Becker wrote on a local internet forum that she was more concerned about progressive groups. Among them: Black Lives Matter, the Bicycle Coalition, Take Action MN.
- Downtown business interests and some local developers were donating money to a PAC called Minneapolis Works!. More than half of that money was funneled through a GOP political fund called the Minnesota Jobs Coalition. After the election, we learned that Minneapolis Works! had spent $273,000 trying (and failing) to save the incumbent majority on the Minneapolis City Council.
- Becker’s response to big business dumping hundreds of thousands of dollars on a local election — saying she’s more concerned with BLM — is not consistent with Minneapolis values, and was more like something a right-winger would say.
- Carol Becker’s campaign was supported by Facebook ads from Save Our #1 Parks, a local political fund that accepted $15,000 from the same GOP-affiliated group.
What was the result of Carol Becker’s headline-grabbing frivolous lawsuit in the middle of the 2017 election?
It was dismissed by a judge. It wasted time and taxpayer money.
Mayor Hodges’ statement at the time: “With this common-sense decision, the law prevailed over Carol Becker’s frivolous lawsuit. Minneapolis residents should be appalled that Ms. Becker wasted taxpayer dollars on defending against a politically-motivated, election-year stunt.”
Is Carol Becker involved in an effort to overhaul the city council that would give significantly more power to the whiter, wealthier, southwest part of Minneapolis?
This appears to be the case. From her usual perch on a local internet forum, Becker is defending it pretty vigorously.
Carol Becker made a comparison to Russian election meddling and the recent shooting massacre in New Zealand in an analysis of how she and her “network” have lost political power in Minneapolis over recent election cycles. Is that a very dumb thing to have said?
When is Carol Becker up for re-election?
Tuesday, November 2, 2021
How can I help replace Carol Becker on the BET?
What will my donation be used for?
Your donation will be stockpiled in our committee’s bank account until 2021. At that point, I will instruct our treasurer to begin writing checks so that we can restore integrity to the BET — by electing candidates who are not Carol Becker.
Are there other things I can do besides donating?
- You can host a Not Carol Fundraiser.
- You can tell your friends about the importance of the Not Carol Movement using the hashtag #NotCarol2021.
- You can plan to caucus and become a delegate to the DFL city convention in 2021 so you can support candidates who are Not Carol.
Where can I view the Not Carol Club campaign finance reports?
Political committees in Minneapolis must register and file regular reports with Hennepin County.
Is all of this for real?
Yes this is a real PAC. We are accepting your real donations. And together, we will make a real difference by restoring integrity to the Board of Estimate and Taxation.
Why isn’t 2017 write-in candidate and all-around good guy John Edwards running for BET in 2021?
John Edwards has always said this isn’t about him. This is about protecting the taxpayers from another four years of Carol Becker. That’s why he is volunteering his time as Political Director of the Club for Taxpayer Justice and Not Carol.
Photo of Minneapolis City Hall: Tony Webster