Me and Matt Entenza at CD2 Convention
Team Rybak at CD2 Convention
Blogger Eric Pusey (The Big E)
Blogger Steve Quist
John Marty and Micah Marty
Blogger Holly Cairns (far right)
Blogger Dave Mindeman
Today I attended two congressional district conventions. They were CD2 in Chanhassen and CD3 in Plymouth. I heard the candidates speak only at CD2. Unfortunately, I missed R. T. Rybak. He must have been coming to CD2 as I was leaving for CD3. Darn!
I enjoyed seeing old and new friends today, including Orrie Salper, Tom Rukavina, Matt Entenza, John Marty, Paul Thissen, Dave Mindeman, Eric Pusey, Steve Quist, the Rybak and Thissen staffers who I have come to know, and especially Holly Cairns. It's great having blogger and candidate friends! Especially now while I'm on a two-week medical leave of absence from work.
There were quite a few speakers today. I'll give a brief rundown of what each one said.
Jim Klobuchar - is the father of Senator Amy Klobuchar. He gave an interesting speech. He said that we must think anew and act anew. The Bush administration has wrecked the economy of this country. We need to fix it. We need to keep the backbone we had when we swept the Democrats back into the White House. We have to be together during this election year. We'll win by sticking together. Mr. Klobuchar also emphatically stated that corporations are not people.
Frannie Franken - "What a difference an election makes. We now have health care." Frannie touched on this important subject before stating that we now have to move on to jobs and the economy. She also told us that Al is in Rochester today attending a funeral.
Brian Melendez - gave a speech about why we need to win in November. He stated that Michele Bachmann doesn't show up to vote. We need to elect Tarryl Clark in CD6. We must not divide the party. Brian is the MN DFL Chair. He's a good speaker and always has something pertinent to say.
Donna Cassutt - stated that we absolutely must elect a DFL governor. It will take each and every one of us to do this. We have to stand together. We can't let the party be divided. (I don't know for sure, but I get the feeling that Brian and Donna are talking about the endorsed candidate versus the non-endorsed candidates. Could this divide the party?)
Lori Swanson - has always supported health care reform. She knew a woman who could barely pay her bills because of the cost of prescription drugs. She also knows of an elderly gentleman who unknowingly bought a phony insurance policy. When he got sick, the insurance company wouldn't pay his medical bills. Now the clinic wants thousands of dollars that he doesn't have. There are hundreds of stories like this. Hopefully the new health care reform will solve many of these issues.
Tom Rukavina - has six issues to focus on: education, education, education and jobs, jobs, jobs. He's got a blue collar background and is fully union. He comes from the old Farmer-Labor part of the DFL party. Tom's speech today was fiery and passionate. (He got a lot of applause.) Tom's daughter is an AFSCME staff representative. Tom believes that working people should be treated with respect and dignity. They should not be treated the way they are in Minnesota today. (Applause, claps, shouts of agreement.) Tom said, "When we're doing less, less, less, then we're not doing more for the people of Minnesota."
John Marty - "Look into your hearts and see why we first got involved in politics." Remember the DFL platform. Remember the reNew MN vision. Never forget all the issues that we're fighting for. These are important issues that are worth fighting for. We need a governor who will make sure that we get what Minnesotans need. John Marty will carry out the vision. He's the one candidate who doesn't take lobby money. He authored the Minnesota Health Plan. Hewill build a better future for all of us.
Margaret Anderson Kelliher - was at her very best today. She was very enthusiastic right from the very beginning of her speech. She was fiery and passionate. She said, "We are all shaped by the road we have walked on." We need a strong DFL governor to turn this state around. The governor we have now has taken tea with the right wingers. We need a DFL governor. Go Margaret! This was an excellent speech today, as always.
Paul Thissen - Our current administration likes to settle legislation by saying, "Well, it's better than nothing." Paul says, "Minnesota has never settled for better than nothing." Don't slap a coat of paint on a buiding that's falling down. We need to build a new building. Paul Thissen has great ideas to bring Minnesota into the future. One thing he'll focus on is the changing demographics of Minnesota. He knows how vital this is to our future.
Matt Entenza - He speaks with the voice of reason. Matt doesn't play on our emotions with lots of fiery passion. Instead, he speaks in a way that appeals to our logic and our common sense. He talks sensibly about the issues facing Minnesota and what the solutions might be. He doesn't go on a rampage about Governor Pawlenty. Instead, he talks about his ideas for fixing Minnesota. Today Matt said, "We need a governor who has a vision that will take us where we need to go." Matt will take us in the direction of green energy. He will make sure we take our state back.
Rebecca Otto - She wants to make affordable housing that is good for the long term. She wants to innovate Minnesota government to be a national leader. Rebecca can do it. Vote for her. She's been an excellent state auditor so far and will continue to be.
At this point I left CD2 and went on to CD3 in Plymouth. I didn't stick around in Chanhassen to hear the speeches and the question and answer period of Madore and Powers. Other bloggers are covering that at MPP.
It's along way from Chanhassen to Plymouth. By the time I got there the speakers had all finished except for Meffert and Hackett. I mingled in the foyer with candidates and staff. I didn't stay very long. My energy is very low today.
The next convention I'll attend is next Saturday, April 17, in Roseville. It's the CD4 convention. That's my home district. I'm looking forward to it.