Mayor R. T. Rybak announced his support today for City Council Member Diane Hofstede, who is embroiled in one of the city’s most competitive campaigns as she fends off a challenge from attorney Jacob Frey.

“I've worked closely with Diane on many tough issues: tornado relief, the 35W bridge collapse, fighting crime, and the nuts and bolts of city government that aren't very visible but matter so much in our daily lives,” said Rybak in statement. “I can tell you she has the best interest of the city in her bones and works hard to make it a reality every day.”

Rybak praised Hofstede’s “bold vision,” saying she had been an early supporter of rejuvenating Nicollet Mall and connecting the East Bank to downtown with a streetcar, and is helping craft the city’s vision for surrounding the Vikings stadium with a new neighborhood that includes open space. He stopped short of using the term "endorse."

The mayor’s stance contrasts with the criticism by some of Hofstede’s colleagues that she is an ineffective leader. Council Members Lisa Goodman, Gary Schiff, Elizabeth Glidden, and Robert Lilligren endorsed Frey in January.

Hofstede has racked up many endorsements from others – among them U.S. Rep. Keith Ellison, Hennepin County Attorney Mike Freeman, City Council President Barb Johnson and Council Members Don Samuels and Meg Tuthill, and numerous labor organizations, including the Minneapolis Building and Construction Trades Council.

DFL delegates from Hofstede’s ward – spanning East Downtown, Dinkytown and Northeast Minneapolis – will meet in a May 4 convention to decide who should get the party’s endorsement.