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Progressive Politics in Minnesota, the Nation, and the World

DFL Gov Candidate Series: Rep. Erin Murphy

Category: MN 2016 Governor
Posted: 08/06/17 22:23

(This is the 5th in a series of DFL Gov candidate interviews)

by Dave Mindeman

Rep. Erin Murphy has been in the legislature for some time. She has been in the majority and in the minority. Now she wants to make a difference in the executive branch.

She tends to look at things as a broader vision rather than what is expedient for the moment. Her progressive credentials are impressive but she prefers to get everyone on the same page.

In regards to single payer, she has been a supporter for some time. If a MNCare buy-in is the intermediate step, she would evaluate that if and when it would come up.

On rural issues, she maintains that broader vision. The state moves forward as a unit. Not with rural and metro separated. And she feels strongly that rural areas need to have their issues discussed personally. She has traveled the state extensively and has met rural leaders on their own turf and listened to what they have to say. To Erin, that personal connection is more important than agreeing with one side or the other.

Education is a vitally important issue for her. She has supported Gov. Dayton on Pre-K and wants very much to expand Early Childhood Family Education (ECFE) - because kids need to come to their elementary schools already prepared.

She mentioned the troubling aspects of Police officer involved shootings and killings. She wants a review of the state's deadly force legalities and make appropriate changes. These recent tragedies have to stop.

She and Paul Thissen are both candidates for governor this cycle. They have worked together in House leadership for a number of years. I asked her (and Paul) about how it feels to be opponents this time around. Both said they are not worried about any problems. They are good friends and respect each other immensely. They may have a few differences in approach and style, but they do not anticipate anything that will interfere with each of them focusing on their own campaigns.

Erin Murphy has been at this the longest after her early announcement. She has probably established a good network for her campaign. We will see if that early work pays off.
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We Are Heating The Planet - And Doing Little To Stop It

Category: Environment
Posted: 08/02/17 01:07

by Dave Mindeman

It is getting very discouraging. Climate scientists are almost beyond the point of warnings - now they are trying to let us know what we should expect and try to prepare for it. New studies are out.

From environmentalist, Bill McKibben, familiar with 2 new studies:

"These studies are part of the emerging scientific understanding that we're in even hotter water than we'd thought. We're a long ways down the path to disastrous global warming, and the policy response -- especially in the United States -- has been pathetically underwhelming."

Underwhelming is probably an understatement. The US, under Trump, is actively undermining the little progress we have made.

"The 2 degree mark -- that's 3.6 degrees Fahrenheit -- was set by the 2016 Paris Agreement....If we surpass that mark, it has been estimated by scientists that life on our planet will change as we know it. Rising seas, mass extinctions, super droughts, increased wildfires, intense hurricanes, decreased crops and fresh water and the melting of the Arctic are expected. The impact on human health would be profound. Rising temperatures and shifts in weather would lead to reduced air quality, food and water contamination, more infections carried by mosquitoes and ticks.

One of the studies concludes that even if we could cut off emissions in the next 15 years (assuming that we act with intensity world wide), we still will reach 3 degrees Celsius by 2100.

We keep thinking that we just have to do something...off somewhere in the future. But these studies indicate that the baseline we are establishing now is not something we can really reverse. We can only put the damage to the climate on hold...and only if we seriously act.

We are once again beyond climate "change" - we are heating up the planet.
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