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District 8 Candidates Push Each Other Into Political Corners

The race for San Antonio’s City Council District 8 has been chock full of the usual campaigning techniques. Rolando Briones, Ron Nirenberg and Mike Kueber have participated in neighborhood association debates and town forums, they’ve walked the streets and they’ve been out doing community meet and greets.

But the heat is on between Briones and Nirenberg, and although Kueber isn't in the middle of the ruckus, he is taking the opportunity to ask questions of his own.

Nirenberg said that Briones has been dishonest and disingenuous when talking to voters about him, attempting to pin him into a political corner as a champion for the liberal cause.

In response, Nirenberg launched a website with his opponent’s namesake - RolandoBriones.com - to draw attention to Briones' political contribution and voting record.

"Rolando Briones says he's a Republican, but most of his contributions are to Democrats," states the website, explaining that 96 percent of Briones’ political contributions have gone to liberal Democrats like Hilary Clinton, the Obama Victory Fund, and Bill White, who challenged Republican Gov. Rick Perry.

"The website the campaign put up in response to Mr. Briones' attacks very plainly and factually points out the enormous disconnect between what Mr. Briones says and what he does. Pointing out the truth is hardly negative campaigning," said Nirenberg.

Meanwhile, Kueber said he can't understand why Nirenberg bought the domain and then used it to throw mud, when Nirenberg previously wrote on his campaign website, "Rather than join my opponent on the low road of misleading attack ads, I believe you deserve honest discussion about issues facing our district and our city."

Briones said he had not read the new web site.

As for the candidates trying to shove each other into a game of divisive partisan politics, "I've said all along this is a non-partisan race," Briones said.

Kueber wants to know why Nirenberg takes such offense at being characterized as a Democrat, writing in his blog: "For a silver lining to this story, their shenanigans improve my chances."

Ryan Loyd was Texas Public Radio's city beat and political reporter. He left the organization in December, 2014.