Minnesota Representative John Marty has finally come out with it, the realization that the Vikings have enlisted the aid of those purportedly working on behalf of the public to identify a public-private stadium venture for the Minnesota Vikings that benefits the public beyond merely having an edifice that it doesn't even own. Marty's criticism of Ted Mondale, the crony pick of Governor Mark Dayton to head the Metropolitan Sports Facilities Commission while receiving pay from a separate position created by the Governor just for him, is that Monday is cooking the books for the Vikings.
In support of his claim, Marty notes that, in presenting what was to have been a neutral evaluation of the Vikings' stadium options and whether public subsidies were appropriate in the construction of a new stadium, Mondale omitted facts damning to his conclusions that generous public subsidies are the norm in the NFL and that cities pay three times the cost of what the Vikings are asking the residents of Minnesota to pay for a new stadium, in attempts to regain NFL teams once teams have left a given market. Marty pointed to facts that directly countered both assertions.
Understandably, no matter how belatedly Marty has come to the realization, Marty is irate, as should be all Minnesotans, regardless of their position on subsidizing a Vikings' stadium.
But Marty is only clawing at the tip of the collusion iceberg on this matter. In addition to Mondale's apparent betrayal of the public trust, similar actors have perpetrated similar betrayals in Ramsey County, and the Vikings, themselves, continue to play the game, arguing that the "cost of a new stadium" is over one billion dollars, when the cost of constructing a shiny new stadium, with accoutrements and a retractable roof is easily less than half that figure.
Marty is justified in his outrage and that outrage should only gain momentum that either kills a Viking stadium deal or confirms for all that the state, not the Vikings, hold the cards in this game. If Marty is interested in moving that shift along, there's no reason to stop with his note of Mondale's misrepresentation of facts.
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