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Progressive Politics in Minnesota, the Nation, and the World

DFL MN Governor's Endorsement Race

Category: 2018
Posted: 05/24/18 03:52

by Dave Mindeman

The DFL convention is coming up in about 10 days - so let's see where we stand.

In the race for Governor, we still have three candidates. Rep. Erin Murphy, State Auditor Rebecca Otto, and Cong. Tim Walz.

General consensus says that Walz has a lead in delegates but it is not a commanding lead. Murphy seems to hold a within striking distance 2nd place and Rebecca Otto follows very closely behind Murphy.

In other words, this is still anyone's ball game.

Walz claims to have broader state wide appeal - and I can go along with that. He comes out of the first district and although not considered a "progressive" candidate, he says a lot of the right things....even denouncing his NRA support from the past. Walz paired with Peggy Flanagan as Lt. Gov. early on. She is very popular with the progressive wing of the party. We shall see if that pays dividends at the convention.

Erin Murphy has garnered a lot of endorsements. More than I would have expected. Labor has been coalescing around her and she already had the Nurses Association on board. She has worked very hard on outstate visibility and it looks like she has made some inroads. Murphy chose to hold off on a running mate to keep options open during the convention.

Rebecca Otto stands with the Environmental community and has solid credentials in that regard. She offers a bold agenda. Her Lt. Governor selection was very interesting - Zarina Baber has been in IT for many years and could speak authoritatively on the MN IT problems.

All three have clear strengths - but there are weaknesses as well.

Walz will battle his perceptions on guns and his previous NRA affiliation will be brought up more than once. His progressive "conversion" will be something he will have to prove to make for broader appeal.

Murphy has made progress, but her statewide name recognition still has some holes. Coming from deep in the metro, her rural appeal will be questioned; although she has already come a long way in that regard. She did not "retire" from the legislature, so some may question her full commitment to the executive office.

Otto has the boldest agenda of the three and it is a very progressive one. Single Payer health care, environment legislation, $15 minimum wage, and more. It is ambitious and probably impossible without a full Democratic legislature, but give her credit for the boldness.

This endorsement will probably need several ballots. There is even the possibility of coming out with a no endorsement finale - which means a big primary contest. Walz may even go that route if he doesn't get the endorsement anyway.

We will try to keep you updated. I'll be at the convention.
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We Need An Intervention

Category: 2018
Posted: 04/11/18 11:53

by Dave Mindeman

I have not been posting lately because it seems like the minute I get done writing something, the news cycle has passed it all by.

Today, Trump is threatening Syria. Paul Ryan decides not to run again. Zuckerberg is testifying to the House. Still getting the aftermath of the FBI raid on Cohen's office. Jim Comey's book comes out next week. And baseball in the snow.

How do you keep up with that?

Donald Trump has given America a case of the frenzies. We do not have time to respond to anything. The infringements keep going and keep getting worse.

If we ever needed an election to hear the voice of the American people, that time is now. Trump has ruined health care; ruined the EPA; ruined any respect for the press; is on the verge of ruining the economy; and has taken politics into the toilet.

And yet he is still standing. Republicans are not only not doing anything but they are turning tail and running away. Remember when John McCain ran on a platform of "Country First"? It would always be our country before politics. Well, that certainly went out the window with Trump - when he says America First, he really means Trump First.

We are headed for a Constitutional crisis. Trump is going to force all of us to do something. He will not leave - no matter what the Mueller investigation says - and the Republican Party is too cowardly to stand up to it.

Republicans always told us that once they got full control of government that things would certainly be different. Well they are - they are a disaster.

This November, Democrats, Independents, like minded Republicans - all need to vote. To raise a voice that says, this is not who we are.

Whatever kind of experiment this has been - it has been an abject failure. The country needs an intervention - this election must serve that purpose.
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Trash The Party If You Must - But Remember the Goal

Category: 2018
Posted: 03/27/18 12:03, Edited: 03/27/18 12:07

by Dave Mindeman

I am seriously trying to figure out what some people in this party process actually want. It is difficult to interpret. Some want to trash everything about the Democratic Party. Trash the DCCC. Trash the caucus process. Trash the endorsement process. Trash leadership. Trash the State Party. Trash the conventions. Trash how we even discuss things on the internet. What exactly do you want? Do you want to change the party? Well, then you have a funny way of going about it. Because blowing things up doesn't make anything change. It just blows things up.

I personally have been with the Democratic Party for decades. I have seen a lot of stupid things and I have seen some inspiring things. Those of you who trash the endorsement process would never have heard of Paul Wellstone. Those of you who think the endorsement process is sacrosanct would not have Mark Dayton as governor. Trashing the party gave us Donald Trump. Trashing the party will continue giving us Jason Lewis, Erik Paulsen, and Tom Emmer.

Where were all these complainers when Steve Sarvi was running for Congress? Where were you for Teresa Daly, Coleen Rowley, Shelley Madore, and Mike Obermueller? Where were you? If you don't have a history with this party and only want to trash it, what are you accomplishing?

I have had many disagreements with the party. My wife and I have constantly come up against obstacles for needed change. But we don't just give up. We don't just take our toys and go home when those disagreements happen. We need to ultimately just win elections to fix any of this. Internal arguments are fine, but keep your eyes on the goal. To oust Republicans. You are entitled to complain about what you do not like - but if you are a member of an organization, you still have basic principles to uphold and continue.

We had a rough cycle in 2018. But the Republicans had help. Help from foreign money. Foreign media. NRA money dumps. And a whole lot of manipulation of our core values. The Russians wanted us to turn on each other and they succeeded.

And that continues today. The Republican model of divide and conquer is alive and well. Yet, we still have an opportunity to come back. The GOP has once again overplayed their hand. We have a motivated youth movement. And we have President who is incompetent. Let's get back to basics. We are the party of the working class. We are the party of the poor and impoverished. We are the party of minority rights. The party of reproductive rights. The party of sensible gun laws. Act like it. Unite behind those ideals.

Complaining about the Democratic Party is a time tested right. But my test for your sincerity is this - will you still be working for the party if your candidate does not win?
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