MINNEAPOLIS — Editor's note: The above video is from November 2020.
Minneapolis Mayor Jacob Frey will run for a second term in 2021, he announced on Thursday.
Frey won his first term as mayor in November of 2017, after previously representing the city's Third Ward on the City Council.
"Over the last four years, we’ve confronted opportunity and hardship together," Frey said in a statement Thursday. "We’ve cemented our values in policy by building and preserving record levels of affordable housing throughout our city and spearheading new, targeted initiatives that help create a more inclusive economy. We’ve also faced unprecedented challenges and calls for necessary structural change. I look forward to continuing to serve Minneapolis as we move into a new era with a shared commitment to build a more vibrant and just city."
The mayor's second term has been fraught with challenges, including responding to the COVID-19 pandemic, the death of George Floyd under the knee of a Minneapolis police officer and all the unrest that followed.
Frey has clashed with the city council over the best path forward for the Minneapolis Police Department since Floyd's death in May 2020. Frey has stood firmly with MPD Chief Medaria Arradondo, moving forward with several reforms, but has opposed some city councilors' calls for a complete overhaul of the force. In his announcement Thursday, Frey noted that he has "withstood calls from some Council Members to abolish the police department" and labeled his approach to public safety as "both and," advocating for better violence prevention initiatives while still expanding "community-based" officers around the city.
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Frey was elected mayor in a crowded ranked-choice voting race in 2017. Since he did not get more than 50% of the first-choice vote, second and third-choice votes were tabulated. Theater executive Tom Hoch came in second, and incumbent Mayor Betsy Hodges in third.
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Frey said his top priorities have been affordable housing, economic inclusion and public safety.
Mayor Frey announced Thursday that he has the endorsement of Minnesota Attorney General Keith Ellison, Teamsters Joint Council 32, Minneapolis Chamber of Commerce President Jonathan Weinhagen and American Indian Community Development Corporation CEO Mike Goze.
Frey said he will have a campaign kick-off event in early 2021. No official challengers have yet been declared.