Archive for the ‘Unions’ Category

This ad, paid for by the House DFL Caucus, says that Zach Dorholt is “delivering for St. Cloud and the middle class”:

Like I said in this post, the DFL dances to the tune that Education Minnesota tells them to dance to. Zach Dorholt is no different. Like the rest of his DFL colleagues in the House of Representatives, Zach voted against teacher accountability because that’s what Education Minnesota told them to do. Rather than doing what’s right for Minnesota’s students and parents, Zach Dorholt and the DFL decided they couldn’t risk Education Minnesota pulling their campaign contributions or their Get Out The Vote (GOTV) operations.

When it’s a fight between doing what’s right for parents and students or doing what’s right for Education Minnesota, Zach Dorholt and the DFL will always fight for Education Minnesota.

The best way I can illustrate who the DFL fights for is to ask everyone when the last time was that the DFL picked the people instead of picking one of their special interest allies. Take your time. Do your research. Go through all of the DFL’s votes. That includes Zach Dorholt’s votes. Check out their votes in committee. Check out their votes on the GOP’s amendments to bills.

I’d bet that the DFL sided with the people less than 5% of the time when it was a fight between the people and one of the DFL’s special interest allies.

Let’s take this from the theoretical to the concrete. At their State Convention, did the DFL side with the blue collar workers of the Iron Range or the Twin Cities plutocrats and trust fund babies on mining? Did Dorholt and the DFL side with the women who ran in-home child care businesses or did they side with their friends in the SEIU and AFSCME instead?

The simple answer is that the DFL didn’t side with blue collar miners or the women who run in-home child care businesses. The DFL took the side of their special interest allies. Not once but twice. Unfortunately, those weren’t the only times that Zach Dorholt and the DFL didn’t take the people’s side.

In the spring of 2013, convenience stores lobbied the DFL legislature not to raise the cigarette tax, saying that raising the cigarette tax would hurt convenience stores on the Minnesota borders with North Dakota or Wisconsin. Zach Dorholt and the DFL couldn’t resist the ideological pull. They raised the cigarette tax, which led to Minnesotans driving to North Dakota or Wisconsin to buy their cigarettes.

Thanks to Zach Dorholt’s and the DFL’s decisions, middle class Minnesotans are getting squeezed. Despite significant increases in LGA and school funding, people’s property tax bills are going up. The jobs created during the time when the DFL controlled the entire state government are mostly part-time jobs or they’re low-paying jobs.

The unemployment rate on the Iron Range is 64.3% higher than the statewide average, thanks mostly to policies advocated for by environmental activists.

Zach Dorholt and the DFL are delivering. Unfortunately, they’re delivering for Education Minnesota and their other special interest allies, not for the middle class.

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According to this ad by the House DFL Caucus, Zach Dorholt is “delivering for St. Cloud and the middle class”:

That’s a nice-sounding chanting point. Unfortunately, it doesn’t have anything to do with reality. Job creation has stagnated. Revenues are falling short of projections.

Most importantly, Dorholt voted for spending $90,000,000 on an office building that isn’t needed instead of spending that money on fixing Minnesota’s roads and bridges.

That’s Dorholt’s record. What part of that says that he’s “delivering for the middle class”? I’d argue that it’s delivering for the privileged. I’d argue that Minnesota’s economy is struggling. That certainly isn’t helping the middle class.

Zach Dorholt voted against working moms who happen to run in-home child care businesses. When he voted to support AFSCME and the SEIU’s unionization scheme, he voted against the First Amendment. That’s because the unionization legislation gives AFSCME and SEIU sole negotiating authority on matters of state funding rates and regulations.

This summer, the Supreme Court ruled that unions can’t force personal care assistants to pay union dues or fair share fees. Also this summer, a lawsuit was filed that would strip the unions of their exclusive negotiating authority. Rep. Dorholt voted against these small business women.

These women aren’t 1-percenters. They’re the heart of the middle class. When Rep. Dorholt repeatedly voted against them, he, along with the rest of the DFL, voted against the middle class.

When Rep. Dorholt voted for raising the cigarette tax, he voted against convenience stores on Minnesota’s borders with North Dakota and Wisconsin. Thanks to that tax bill, those stores are now struggling while stores in North Dakota and Wisconsin are celebrating their higher profits.

If anything, Rep. Dorholt is helping the DFL deliver a knockout punch to Minnesota’s middle class. The Dayton-DFL-Dorholt economy is delivering pain to the middle class, thanks to lower wages and higher prices on products.

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The highest profile pipeline project in the nation is the Keystone XL Pipeline project. While Republicans have fought for the building of the Keystone XL Pipeline, that isn’t the only pipeline project being delayed by environmental activists. This article highlights the impact the anti-pipelines activists are having in outstate Minnesota:

Railroads will be the key to winter heat as propane becomes a dicier commodity to secure. Minnesota Gov. Mark Dayton recommended pre-paying for propane supplies to eliminate the uncertainty of rising prices later this winter.

But that’s not an option for some people in Park Rapids.

“I can’t afford to take the chance,” said Steve Olafson, who owns the Skelgas service in Park Rapids and ended his “pre-buy” program this year. Last year he found his business trying to fill pre-paid orders for $1.54 per gallon at $5 per gallon.

First, this shows how little thought went into Gov. Dayton’s recommendation. Gov. Dayton automatically thought that businesses wouldn’t react to higher prices and losing money. Mr. Olafson, the businessman who would get hurt by price increases, decided he isn’t willing to lose money on the pre-paid plan. That’s why he eliminated that as an option for customers.

Gov. Dayton’s ‘plan’ was more of a gimmick aimed at hiding a problem create by his political allies in the environmental movement. Environmental activists have waged war on building pipelines, whether it’s the Keystone XL Pipeline or the proposed pipeline from the Bakken to refineries in Superior, WI.

The solution is to build the pipelines. The minute that those pipelines are built, railcar availability will improve dramatically. Those things won’t happen, though, if Gov. Dayton is Minnesota’s governor. The environmental activist wing of the DFL won’t tolerate it.

The railroad capacity issue won’t change until Minnesota has a governor who will stand up to the environmental activists. That will trigger hardships for tons of Minnesotans, including farmers who can’t get their crops to market, homeowners who will get hit with paying way too much for propane and Iron Rangers who can’t get their ore to the steelmakers in a timely fashion.

The DFL insists that they’re fighting for the little guy. That’s BS. I’ve just highlighted how they’re shafting farmers and laborers, the F and L in DFL. The truth is that the DFL is fighting tirelessly for the environmental activist wing of their party.

The DFL is fighting tirelessly for the environmental activists because that’s the dominant wing of their party. Most of the leaders of that wing of the party are plutocrats and trust fund babies who don’t give a damn about Iron Rangers and farmers.

But I digress.

The DFL created this rail capacity crisis. Now they’re pretending to look for the solution, with pretending being the key word. If the DFL was truly interested in solving this crisis, they’d start building pipelines.

Unfortunately, the DFL won’t do that because they won’t stand up to the environmental activist wing of their party.

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This article shows how the environmental left uses the regulation process to kill good-paying construction jobs:

“We don’t see where anyone’s actually said, ‘yes, you have the need to go forward. We want you to go forward, and now let’s find a place to go forward,'” said attorney Frank Bibeau, representing Honor the Earth.

Bibeau argued that a certificate of need should be requested.

“If you do the certificate of need, then we at least know we have to do a project,” said Bibeau. “Right now we’ve got everybody alarmed, and we’re worried about who else we might alarm just because we’re not sure what we’re going to do.”

Ultimately, the Minnesota Public Utilities Commission sided with Bibeau and Honor the Earth, killing high-paying construction jobs. Thanks to Honor the Earth’s stunt, railroad capacity will continue to be limited, meaning farmers’ crops won’t get to market in a timely fashion:

Supporters were also quick to point to the problems caused by oil tankers dominating the railway system, and choking out agricultural shipments like grain.

Earlier this week, Gov. Dayton held discussions about how to get those grain shipments moving and to improve railroad safety. The simple solution is building pipelines.

Environmental activists apparently don’t care that farmers and construction workers are getting hurt by their scorched earth tactics. Environmental activists are the dominant part of the DFL in Minnesota and Democrats nationwide. They’ve figured out a way to shaft the F and the L in the DFL, aka farmers and laborers.

It’s time those parts of the DFL to notice that they’re getting shafted by the DFL. Why should farmers continue to support the DFL? Environmentalists continually lobby to heap regulation upon regulation on family farmers. Those same environmental activists continually shut down major construction projects.

The DFL continually talks about how important farmers and laborers are to the DFL. Unfortunately, their actions show how they’re dominated by the environmental activists’ agenda. That’s why farmers and laborers should question the DFL this election season.

Specifically, they should ask the DFL ‘what’ve you done for me lately’? It’s an especially legitimate question after the stunt that Honor the Earth and the Minnesota Public Utilities Commission pulled Thursday.

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This article proves that Lois Lerner is thoroughly corrupt:

In 2007, Lerner responded directly to a complaint that some major labor unions reported completely different amounts of political expenditures when filing with the IRS and the Department of Labor.

At the time of the email, Lerner was the Director of Exempt Organizations at the IRS.

Lerner wrote, “We looked at the information you provided regarding organizations that report substantial amounts of political activity and lobbying expenditures on the DOL Form LM-2, but report little to no political expenditures on the Form 990 filed with the IRS.”

“We believe this difference in reporting does not necessarily indicate that the organization has incorrectly reported to either the DOL or the IRS,” Lerner concluded.

Talk about a parsable sentence. Here’s something with a little less spin:

In 2006, the year leading up to Lerner’s email, the national headquarters for the AFL-CIO reported no direct or indirect political expenditures with the IRS on their 990 form, leaving the line 81a blank. That same year, the AFL-CIO reported $29,585,661 in political activities with the Department of Labor.

What’s $30,000,000 in indirect political expenditures amongst political allies, right? It isn’t like $30,000,000 could tip a handful of House and Senate races, right?

Unfortunately, that isn’t the only time Ms. Lerner turned a blind eye towards this type of corruption:

Also in 2006 the Teamsters Union reported no political expenditures with the IRS while at the same time reporting $7,081,965 with the Labor Department.

There’s more:

Again in 2006, Unite-Here reported no political activity with the IRS and $1,451,002 with the Labor Department.

In 2005, the National Education Association also reported no political expenditures with the IRS while at the same time reporting $24,985,250 with the Labor Department.

We’re supposed to believe that all this money was spent on lobbying Congress, not on campaigns? That’s as insulting as it is dishonest.

Lerner is a partisan hack. She should be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law. Unfortunately, that won’t happen because we have an equally corrupt partisan hack as US Attorney General.

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This must be ‘Bad Breath Week’ for Democrats. This week’s Onions and Orchids is filled with onions for the Democrats. Here’s another example:

Onions: To the 3 Stooges — Governor Dayton, Senator Franken and Congressman Nolan. Will the lies never stop. These 3 will do everything they can to destroy the mining industry in Minnesota. Their Sierra Club masters will see to that and pump all the money they can into their campaigns. The sad part is that your union leadership is supporting this effort under the cover of being a Democrat. Remember that a socialist is not a Democrat and a real liberal embraces all ideas and views. All you young miners should be watching the news. Your leadership has betrayed you and the future of your families. If any of these 3 are re-elected, plan on retiring from Walmart. Whether you have a job or not, your union elite will still get a check, expense account and a car thanks to you. Also, I hope you keep an eye on the Highway 53 route; there are a few surprises coming. (Submitted by a Real Democrat and Retired Miner.)

The question miners have to ask themselves is whether they can afford another term from Larry, Moe and Curly. The median household income for Eveleth is $35,500. That’s $23,626 less than the statewide average.

The union leadership hasn’t pressured the Three Stooges into going to bat for the miners. You can’t be pro-union if you don’t fight for union jobs. Supporting the right to organize is what these politicians specialize in. That isn’t what these Rangers need, though. They need high-paying union jobs.

There’s no question that Gov. Dayton, Sen. Franken and Rep. Nolan will fight for the environmental activists. That’s what they’ve consistently done throughout their political careers.

The decision facing Rangers is straightforward. A vote for Larry, Moe and Curly is a vote to end mining. Unlike the Three Stooges’ act, this isn’t a laughing matter.

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This morning’s @Issue was offensive to informed voters. It started with Tom Hauser sleepily repeating the discredited DFL talking point that jobs are “coming back.” It continued when Sarah Janacek called ABM’s ads against Jeff Johnson “outside money.” Retread political hack Don Betzold kept the misinformation going by saying that “it’s too early to tell” what insurance rates will be.

Let’s start with Hauser repeating the DFL line about jobs. It’s BS. They aren’t coming back. That’s just the DFL lying through its teeth. This year, the Dayton/DFL economy has created 2,900 jobs in 7 months. The Dayton/DFL economy lost 4,200 jobs in July. The revenue projection for July was off by 6.6%, coming in $69,000,000 short of MMB’s projection.

That isn’t proof of a Minnesota economic recovery. It isn’t proof that the Dayton/DFL policies are taking us in the right direction. It’s proof that they’re failing, especially when you consider the fact that one-third of the jobs created in the last 12 months were government jobs.

It’s sad to see Sarah Janacek make foolish statements like calling ABM “outside money.” She knows better than that. She knows that ABM is funded by Alida Messinger, the public employee unions and community organizing organizations with deep ties to the DFL.

In short, ABM is the DFL’s messaging unit. Pretending that they’re an arms-length distant organization just isn’t being honest with people. Further, Ms. Janacek shouldn’t be that gentle with ABM. They’re a disgusting organization that specializes in smear campaigns. ABM is devoid of virtue and honesty. They should be treated like the parasitic political hatchet organization that they are.

Let me repeat this message to timid GOP pundits like Ms. Janacek: ABM should be exposed and ridiculed for being dishonest and untrustworthy. Tip-toeing around ABM’s disgusting tactics gives them a legitimacy they didn’t earn.

Finally, Don Betzold should’ve been criticized for saying that he didn’t know what insurance premiums would be. If he actually doesn’t know, then he should be put out to pasture. If he knows, he should be exposed as a political hack repeating the DFL’s talking points.

Honesty matters in messaging and reporting. That’s why Tom Hauser and Sarah Janacek should be criticized for their timid, misinformed statemenets.

The lone bright spot was Brian McClung. Brian was well-informed and confident in his presentation of important information.

One of my favorite reads each week is the Mesabi Daily News’ Onions and Orchids column. Here’s the highlight of this week’s edition:

Onions: Smelly ones to the same old same old by our Minnesota union executives endorsing Al Franken and the new Democratic Party. The Steelworkers, Carpenters, AFL-CIO, AFSCME … once again bow down to the party they send our dues to. The new Democratic Party would not endorse mining in northeast Minnesota a few monthThe s ago when they attempted to construct a platform to run on. Franken has done nothing for the real working middle class at all. He votes against things like Keystone Pipeline and has not strongly supported mining. He supported the minimum wage increase but that in reality does nothing to the working middle class being more of a political move than a real help to anyone. Franken has gladly gone along with everything Obama has pushed for, including Obamacare. Unions are supposed to support its members and the work they are trained to do. Our unions once again let us down supporting a candidate like Franken who is part of the elite left against mining, logging, fossil fuels, etc. He has no real clue about what a middle class family endures watching our median income drop by almost 18 percent over the past six years. Think on your own and vote your conscious. Our way of life depends upon it.

A few days ago, Ken Martin said that Republicans would forget about the Range the day after the election. I wrote this post to highlight the fact that the DFL has forgotten the Range the day after each of the last 5 cycles. The closest Al Franken’s gotten to supporting miners is telling them he’s pro-union.

That’s BS.

You can’t be pro-egg and anti-chicken. You can’t be pro-jobs and anti-businessman. In this instance, you can’t be pro-mining and pro-environmental activist. That’s who Al Franken is.

The writer is right. The “new Democratic Party” didn’t endorse mining at this year’s state convention. That necessarily means they’re anti-mining. Saying that you’re for mining “if it can be done in an environmentally safe way” is code for saying ‘I don’t have the spine to tell Conservation Minnesota and the Sierra Club to take a hike.’

That’s Al Franken. He’s spineless. He’d rather have environmental activists send him campaign contributions than fighting for good paying mining jobs. That isn’t opinion. It’s what he’s done the last 5+ years.

As for the “new Democratic Party”, they’re owned by Alida Messinger, Conservation Minnesota and the environmental activists living comfortably in the Twin Cities. They don’t just run the DFL. They own the DFL. They’re the people who’ve antagonized the blue collar workers of the Range.

Check back later this weekend for more on the “new Democratic Party.”

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The AFL-CIO of Minnesota should simply change its name. They aren’t a union representing “working families.” Based on their announcement, they’re just another DFL front group. Look at their endorsement list:

Governor & Lieutenant Governor
Governor Mark Dayton & Tina Smith (DFL)

United States Senate
Senator Al Franken (DFL)

Secretary of State
Steve Simon (DFL)

United States House of Representatives
District 1 – Congressman Tim Walz (DFL)
District 2 – Mike Obermueller (DFL)
District 3 – Sharon Sund (DFL)
District 4 – Congresswoman Betty McCollum (DFL)
District 5 – Congressman Keith Ellison (DFL)
District 6 – Joe Perske (DFL)
District 7 – Congressman Colin Peterson (DFL)
District 8 – Congressman Rick Nolan (DFL)

Minnesota House of Representatives
1A Bruce Patterson (DFL); 1B Eric Bergeson (DFL);
2A Rep. Roger Erickson (DFL); 2B David Sobieski (DFL);
3A Rep. David Dill (DFL);3B Rep. Mary Murphy (DFL)
4A Rep. Ben Lien (DFL);
5A Rep. John Persell (DFL),5B Rep. Tom Anzelc (DFL)
6A Rep. Carly Melin (DFL); 6B Rep. Jason Metsa (DFL)
7A Jennifer Schultz (DFL); 7B Rep. Erik Simonson (DFL)
8A Jim Miltich (DFL); 8B Jay Sieling (DFL)
9A Dan Bye (DFL); 9B Al Doty (DFL)
10A Rep. John Ward (DFL); 10B Rep. Joe Radinovich (DFL)
11A Rep. Mike Sundin (DFL)
12B Gordon Wagner (DFL)
13A Emily Jensen (DFL)
14A Dan Wolgamott (DFL); 14B Rep. Zach Dorholt (DFL)
15A Dale James Rittenour Jr. (DFL); 15B Brian Johnson (DFL)
16A Laurie Driessen (DFL); 16B James Kanne (DFL)
17A Rep. Andrew Falk (DFL); 17B Rep. Mary Sawatzky (DFL)
19B Jack Considine (DFL)
20B Rep. David Bly (DFL)
21A Lynn Schoen (DFL); 21B Mark Schneider (DFL)
22A Diana Slyter (DFL); 22B Cheryl Avenel-Navara (DFL)
23A Pat Bacon (DFL)
24A Beverly Cashman (DFL); 24B Rep. Patti Fritz (DFL)
27B Rep. Jeanne Poppe (DFL)
31B J. D. Holmquist (DFL)
32A Paul Gammel (DFL); 32B Laurie Warner (DFL)
33A Todd Mikkelson (DFL)
34B David Hoden (DFL)
35A Peter Perovich (DFL)
36A Jefferson Fietek (DFL)
37B Susan Witt (DFL)
38A Pat Davern (DFL); 38B Greg Pariseau (DFL)
39A Tim Stender (DFL); 39B Tom DeGree (DFL)
40A Rep. Mike Nelson (DFL); 40B Rep. Debra Hilstrom (DFL)
41A Rep. Connie Bernardy (DFL); 41B Rep. Carolyn Laine (DFL)
42A Rep. Barb Yarusso (DFL); 42B Rep. Jason Isaacson (DFL)
43A Rep. Peter Fischer (DFL); 43B Rep. Leon Lillie (DFL)
44A Audrey Britton (DFL)
45A Rep. Lyndon Carlson (DFL); 45B Rep. Mike Freiberg (DFL)
46B Cheryl Youakim (DFL)
47A Matt Gieseke (DFL)
48A Rep. Yvonne Selcer (DFL); 48B Joan Howe-Pullis (DFL)
49A Rep. Ron Erhardt (DFL); 49B Rep. Paul Rosenthal (DFL)
50A Rep. Linda Slocum (DFL); 50B Rep. Ann Lenczewski (DFL)
51A Rep. Sandra Masin (DFL); 51B Rep. Laurie Halverson (DFL)
52A Rep. Rick Hansen (DFL); 52B Rep. Joe Atkins (DFL)
53A Rep. JoAnn Ward (DFL); 53B Kay Hendrikson (DFL)
54A Rep. Dan Schoen (DFL); 54B Don Slaten (DFL)
55A Jay Whiting (DFL)
56B Rep. Will Morgan (DFL)
57B Denise Packard (DFL)
58A Amy Willingham (DFL); 58B Marla Vagts (DFL)
59A Rep. Joe Mullery (DFL); 59B Rep. Ray Dehn (DFL)
60A Rep. Diane Loefffler (DFL); 60B Rep. Phyllis Kahn (DFL)
61A Rep. Frank Hornstein (DFL); 61B Rep. Paul Thissen (DFL)
62A Rep. Karen Clark (DFL); 62B Rep. Susan Allen (DFL)
63A Rep. Jim Davnie (DFL)
64A Rep. Erin Murphy (DFL); 64B Dave Pinto (DFL)
65A Rep. Rena Moran (DFL); 65B Rep. Carlos Mariani (DFL)
66A Rep. Alice Hausman (DFL); 66B Rep. John Lesch (DFL)
67A Rep. Tim Mahoney (DFL); 67B Rep. Sheldon Johnson (DFL)

I wouldn’t have been shocked if 90% of the politicians that the AFL-CIO endorsed were Democrats. It’s stunning, though, to see that every candidate that they endorsed is a Democrat. Shar Knutson’s statement is utter fantasy:

“The 2013 and 2014 legislative sessions were some of the most productive sessions for working people in a generation.” said Minnesota AFL-CIO President Shar Knutson. “Their focus on middle class values like investing in education and job creation is working as Minnesota’s economy continues to strengthen.”

This legislature didn’t “invest in education.” They spent money on Education, which is the teacher’s union. There’s a big difference between the two things.

In fact, lower income families in the inner city are running from schools where these ‘investments’ were supposedly made. Further, the DFL legislature tried imposing a total moratorium on frack-sand mining, which would create hundreds of middle class jobs.

The AFL-CIO should stop pretending that it isn’t a DFL front organization. They should change their name to the DFL-CIO.

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This afternoon, I received an email from the Johnson for Governor campaign saying that Jennifer Parrish endorsed Jeff. Here’s the highlight of the email:

“Mark Dayton has thrown me and hundreds of my fellow childcare providers under the bus to pay back his campaign contributors,” Parrish said. “And when we fought back, he belittled us and said we were just ‘throwing little fits.’ Minnesota small businesswomen need a champion in the governor’s office, not someone who views us and our livelihoods as nothing more than collateral to be used to pay back the union bosses who own his administration.

“Jeff Johnson is the champion small businesswomen need as the governor of our state. Like my fellow child care providers, Jeff is a fighter; he can take a punch, and then hit back twice as hard. That’s what it’s going to take to defeat Mark Dayton and his union boss friends. I wholeheartedly endorse Jeff for governor.”

“As governor, I will never, ever treat any Minnesotans the way Mark Dayton treated Jennifer and her fellow small businesswomen. It’s appalling how he has used these women’s livelihoods to pay back his campaign contributors, and then had the gall to belittle them for fighting back. As governor, I will listen to ALL Minnesotans. I am honored to be endorsed by Jennifer, and I am looking forward to undoing the damage Mark Dayton has inflicted on Minnesota child care providers,” said Johnson.

Jennifer Parrish is right. Gov. Dayton threw an entire group of independent businesswomen under the bus to appease Gov. Dayton’s special interest allies. Gov. Dayton and the legislature didn’t care about these independent businesswomen. They cared only that this was the highest priority on the public employee unions’ wish list. Gov. Dayton couldn’t afford to say no to their GOTV machine, aka the public employees union.

That would’ve been political suicide.

The fact that Gov. Dayton accused these independent businesswomen of “throwing little fits” is exceptionally sexist and demeaning. That’s something Jeff Johnson would never think, much less say.

Jeff Johnson has fought hard against entitled government. He’s been the taxpayers’ staunchest watchdog. The best thing about Jeff is that, wherever you’re talking to him, it’s like you’re talking to your favorite neighbor. Jeff isn’t into politicspeak. He’s into neighborspeak. That’s why he connects with people.

It’s time to close the final chapter of Gov. Dayton’s political career. He was a terrible senator. He’s been worse as governor. He’s thrown Main Street Minnesota under the bus while shoveling the taxpayers’ money to his special interest allies. That’ just plain un-Minnesotan.

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