Back in the day, Republican operative and blogger Michael Brodkorb made much of the 2008 suspension of Minneapolis mayor R.T. Rybak's driver's license for the partial non-payment of a speeding ticket (though it's a piece that doesn't seem to have survived the migration of Brodkorb's content to his new, kinder and gentler site).
For his part, the Mayor confessed being surprised, while acknowledging to the Star Tribune that public officials are held to a higher standard:
Minneapolis Mayor R.T. Rybak has been driving without a valid license for nearly three months.
His driver's license has been suspended since Feb. 14 because he failed to pay the full amount of a 2006 speeding ticket, Minnesota court records show.
Rybak said Thursday night he had no idea his license had been pulled.
"I paid my speeding ticket and I fully intended to pay the right amount," he said. "People shouldn't speed, people should pay their speeding tickets, and I shouldn't have sped. There's no excuse."
. . ."I'm in the public eye and rightfully have to be held to a very high standard," he said. "I will get it fixed."
Bluestem recalled the episode after checking newly selected House Minority Leader Kurt Daudt's court records this morning. Daudt's driver's license has been suspended four times for non-payment of tickets since 2006 (a pdf of the cases is embedded below).
Three are for unpaid speeding tickets (Daudt received one other speeding ticket and another for a registration vehicle registration issue, but paid fairly promptly) and the other for a registration/license plate violation).
Two of the suspensions happened after he began serving in the state legislature--and why yes, he was a member of the Public Safety and Crime Prevention Policy and Finance Committee.
We're not sure if being House Minority leader will put Representative Daudt as much in the public eye as the crowd-surfing mayor, but Bluestem does hope that he'll get hold himself to as high a standard and pay future speeding tickets with greater alacity than he has heretofore shown.
Photo: Kurt Daudt, from the Twin Cities Daily Planet.