Archive for the ‘Collin Peterson’ Category

According to the Star Tribune’s endorsement editorial, Collin Peterson deserves to get re-elected. According to the Strib, Democrat Collin Peterson should be re-elected because “voters need a representative with the Washington savvy and clout to protect their distinctive interests. They have that in 15-term incumbent Democrat Rep. Collin Peterson.”

Further, the Strib Editorial Board wrote “Effective representation in the U.S. House is important to all 435 congressional districts across America. But sound and attentive federal policy is particularly vital to rural economies and communities, whose needs often are not well understood in urban America. As a result, no part of Minnesota has more at stake in choosing a House member than the sprawling and fertile Seventh District bordering the Dakotas, one of the most agriculturally focused districts in America.”

There’s little doubt that Peterson knows his district. There’s growing doubt that he votes his district anymore. Check this chart out:

It isn’t difficult making the case that voting with Pelosi 58% of the time is voting with the district. Voting with Nancy Pelosi, the quintessential San Francisco liberal, 82% of the time isn’t the definition of voting for rural Minnesota’s values.

Experienced, knowledgeable and well-known across the district, Fischbach, 54, is running a spirited campaign focused on criticizing Peterson’s alignment with House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and on looking forward to rural Minnesota’s future needs, such as broadband and value-added agriculture.

As Peterson votes more often with Pelosi, she hasn’t reciprocated. In the midst of impeachment, when Pelosi agreed to the USMCA, Pelosi had Angie Craig and Dean Phillips front and center on stage. Collin Peterson was nowhere to be found, a major snub for a trade deal that will benefit farmers. Apparently, the affection only runs one direction.

Collin Peterson is suffering from Tom Daschle Disease. For those too young to remember, Tom Daschle Disease is characterized when you act conservative when you’re ‘back home’ in a red state or district but vote liberal in Washington, DC. Collin Peterson insists that he still represents Minnesota’s Seventh District just like he always has. That isn’t the truth.

Peterson represents a district that President Trump won by 31 points in 2016. In her announcement that she’s running against Peterson, Michelle Fischbach highlighted as fact that Peterson voted against President Trump’s agenda 85% of the time. That isn’t representing Minnesota’s Seventh District. But that’s just the tip of Peterson’s difficulties. This information should be shared with Seventh District voters immediately:

Each Congress, Peterson votes more with Pelosi. It’s understatement to say that Pelosi’s priorities aren’t the Seventh District’s priorities. Peterson is counting on voters giving him credit for being independent-minded:

“He doesn’t back down”? Seriously? Apparently, that’s DC-Speak for ‘He does what Pelosi wants.’ Like someone who’s been in DC 30 years, Peterson has a nasty case of DC-itis, too, which is just as bad as Tom Daschle Disease. The only cure for DC-itis is defeat at the ballot box.

Collin Peterson just made it official. He’s running for re-election again, this time for a 15th term. This might be his stiffest test. As I wrote here, Peterson doesn’t represent the district anymore.

President Trump won MN-7 by 31 points. Despite that, Peterson voted against President Trump 85% of the time:

“Collin Peterson no longer represents Western Minnesota values,” added Fischbach. “One of his first votes this Congress was to ban the wall, and he votes against President Trump 85 percent of the time. Unlike Peterson, I will work with President Trump to secure our borders, build the wall, fight against the Democrats’ socialist agenda, and keep America great.”

It’ll be interesting to see how motivated Peterson will be. Staring him in the face is the possibility of working from the minority with Ilhan Omar and AOC. That can’t be an appealing thought for Peterson. Also, it’s apparent that his relationship with Pelosi has soured, too. The day after Peterson voted against Schiff’s articles of impeachment, Pelosi slighted Peterson:

The USMCA is a big deal with farmers. The wide-angle shot at the start of this video is revealing in who isn’t in the picture. Hint: Peterson isn’t there. To a calculating woman like Pelosi, that isn’t accidental. That’s meant to send a signal that Peterson’s in her doghouse.

Peterson won’t return to Nancy’s good graces anytime soon because Nancy’s a vengeful bitch. The voters in MN-7 need to come together on whichever candidate they pick. This isn’t an opportunity that happens every year.

Democrats love saying that their House majority is built by moderates. That’s insulting to thinking individuals. There aren’t any moderate Democrats left in the House. At least, there won’t be if Collin Peterson retires. Last week, I wrote this post to highlight the fact that the Democrats who are relatively moderate really aren’t moderates.

In that article, I quoted Newt Gingrich, who said “that he’s writing a book about House Democrats that he calls ‘the radical 200.'” Newt then continues, saying that “the entire Democratic Party is marching off a left-wing cliff. There’s a bill, for example, that would raise the FICA Tax, your Social Security tax, by 19% and they had 206 Democrats signed onto it.”

Of the 233 Democrats in the House, 230 voted to impeach President on both articles. That’s stunning considering the fact that the only testimony that the Democrats had was hearsay testimony. Impeaching a president based on hearsay testimony isn’t what a moderate would do. That’s what a hardcore partisan does.

Quite a few so-called moderates joined the Problem Solvers Caucus. It sounds great. Everyone wants to see Congress solve problems that make people’s lives better. The problem is that the people in this caucus haven’t solved anything. It’s difficult for the minority party to get things done in the partisan House, especially when it’s ruled with an iron first by someone as partisan as Speaker Pelosi. That brings me to my next point.

A so-called ‘moderate’ like Collin Peterson votes against President Trump 85% of the time. He voted against the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, which has helped ignite the Trump economy. He voted against eliminating the regulations that essentially killed the fossil fuel industry and hurt small town communities. Does that sound like the reasonable thing to do?

What problems have Democrats solved? Did Democrats fix health care? Did Democrats lower prescription drug prices? Did Democrats make us energy independent? What exactly did Democrats do the past 18 months? Anything worthwhile?

Many Democrats told voters that they’d never vote for Pelosi as speaker. Some Democrats kept their promise. Many Democrats didn’t keep their promise. Democrats haven’t had an original thought since the Clinton administration. What they have is an ideological checklist that they’re determined to pass. It doesn’t matter that it doesn’t make people’s lives better. What matters to Democrats is that it’s on the checklist. Remember this?

Based on his actions, it’s more than fair to question Collin Peterson’s loyalty to Nancy Pelosi. In this post, I wrote that Pelosi had disrespected Peterson, omitting him from the USMCA press conference. In December, Peterson said that he hadn’t decided whether he’d run or retire but that he’d make up his mind “in January or February.” Today is Feb. 25 so there isn’t much time to make a decision. This tweet might tell us what he’s going to do:

“I’m not sure I want to win.” Let that sink in a bit. Think about whether Collin Peterson would want to be part of the minority party again. Think about whether Collin Peterson would want to have to deal with AOC + 3. (I think that’s his worst nightmare but I might be wrong.)

Personally, I question whether Peterson could win. He isn’t the perfect match for the District that he used to be. Peterson’s voted against President Trump 85% of the time in a district that Trump won by 31 points. There’s a strong set of candidates running on the GOP side. President Trump is pouring tons of money into Minnesota, too, with the goal of flipping the state from blue to red and to bring with him as many House seats as possible. MN-7 is certainly at the top of his ‘flip list’.

Nobody would blame Peterson if he retired. The recent Minnesota Poll shows Trump trailing in the metro (Hennepin and Ramsey counties) but winning in the suburbs quite comfortably:

President Trump’s approval rating in the suburbs looks quite strong. If that’s the case, the GOP congressional candidates in MN-2 and MN-3 should enthusiastically support President Trump’s legislative agenda. If Republicans flip MN-2, MN-3 and MN-7, they’ll retake their majority in the US House. Does Collin Peterson want to return to the minority party again? That’s the $64,000 question.

Every other year, people question whether Collin Peterson will retire. It’s like a fifth season in Minnesota. The order goes spring, summer, fall, is Collin Peterson retiring, then winter. Last fall, Peterson announced that he’d announce whether he’d seek another term “in January or February.” February is half gone and we still haven’t heard anything from Peterson.

What we have heard is that, if he runs, Peterson has a primary challenger:

Thaddeus Laugisch, of Moorhead, on Thursday, Feb. 13, said he planned to challenge U.S. Rep. Collin Peterson for his 7th District seat. Laugisch is seeking the Democratic endorsement for the seat and said he could be a better advocate than Peterson, the nearly three-decade incumbent, for Minnesota’s workers.

“Families of western Minnesota are struggling while CEO profits are at all-time highs,” Laugisch said in a news release. “Minnesotans deserve a fresh perspective in Washington that fits their needs, instead of the needs of the wealthy.”

I’ve never heard of Mr. Laugisch. I’m not surprised by that because Collin Peterson is the DFL bench in CD-7.

Peterson has not yet announced whether he will seek another term and several GOP candidates have signed up to take on Peterson in the district that favored President Donald Trump over Hillary Clinton in 2016 by 30 percentage points. Peterson said last year that he expected to make an announcement about his plans in January or early February, but two weeks into February Peterson still hadn’t made public his plan.

It’s impossible to know what Peterson’s plans are at this point but nothing will surprise me. In one way, I think the retirement question is almost irrelevant. Peterson votes against President Trump 85% of the time in a district that Trump won by 31 points in 2016. That’s a strong structural disadvantage to start a campaign.

Peterson has won by smaller and smaller margins the past few cycles. In 2018, which was a strong DFL year, Peterson won by 4.26%. In 2016, Peterson won by 5.06%. In 2014, Peterson won by 8 points. In 2012, Peterson won by 20 points.

Republicans have several top-tier, well-financed, challengers running. In the interest of full disclosure, I contributed to Michelle Fischbach. That being said, I don’t have a vote in the matter. If he runs, the people might involuntarily retire him.

This article is surprising because it’s something nobody had heard these rumors. The article starts with a sentence that says “Rep. Collin Peterson (D-MN) told KFGO that he’s leaning against voting to impeach President Trump — but won’t switch parties.”

Peterson issued this statement:

I’m staying in the party, in spite of some of the stuff that’s going on that I don’t agree with, I am not going switch parties at this stage of my career. There have been overtures by the highest levels of the Republican party in the last couple weeks to ask if I would consider it and I told them no.

That fits with Chairman Peterson’s character. Had Peterson switched parties, it would’ve been one of the biggest switches in recent political history. That being said, Peterson is in the fight of his political life.

According to Lt. Gov. Fischbach, a) President Trump won the district by 31 points in 2016 and b) Chairman Peterson has “voted against President Trump 85% of the time“, including voting against funding the wall. That isn’t exactly the fastest way to endear yourself to MN-7 voters. While President Trump was winning the district by 31 points, Peterson won by a meager 5.03%. In fact, Peterson defeated his GOP opponent by just 4.26% in 2018.

Still, there’s been some visible tension between Peterson and Pelosi. Peterson got Speaker Pelosi’s cold shoulder when she announced that a deal had been reached on the USMCA trade agreement. Rather than having Peterson at the press availability, Pelosi invited Richard Neal, the Democrats’ chairman of the House Ways & Means Committee. As chairman of the House Agriculture Committee, Peterson wasn’t invited. Then there’s this:

In the report, Peterson is quoted as saying that a) President Trump didn’t commit a crime and b) the Democrats relied on second- and third-hand information. Those are big sticking points with House Democrats. That pretty much guts the Democrats’ case. If the Democrats are getting along with Peterson, why is he torching their impeachment case?

Stay tuned to LFR for more twists and turns in this race. This one might be a major upset if Republicans flip Peterson’s seat.

It seems like each week brings more bad news in Collin Peterson’s direction. Just minutes ago, I spotted this tweet:

There are endorsements and then there are endorsements. Michele Bachmann’s endorsement in a staunchly pro-life district like MN-7 is definitely a difference-maker. Here is Michele Bachmann’s endorsing statement:

Here’s what Willmar Radio announced:

Former Congresswoman Michele Bachmann, who has served as a member of President Trump’s evangelical advisory board in the past, says she is endorsing former Lt. Governor and State Senator Michelle Fischbach, who is running for Congress in western Minnesota’s 7th District. If she wins, Fischbach, of Paynesville, will become the second Republican woman from Minnesota elected to the US. House of Representatives; the first was Bachmann.

Thus far, Collin Peterson, the House Agriculture Chairman, has done nothing to get USMCA ratified in the House. Watch this pathetic string of excuses from the Democrats’ ‘leadership’ team:

Pelosi’s Do-Nothing Democrats are a failure. They’ve focused on impeachment while ignoring USMCA. The Democrats’ priorities aren’t America’s priorities. Democrats deserve to return to minority status in the U.S. House of Representatives. Removing Collin Peterson would be a fantastic start to accomplishing that goal.

Earlier tonight, Democrat ‘moderates’ Angie Craig, Collin Peterson and Dean Phillips voted against censuring Democrat Impeachment Chairman Adam Schiff for lying to the American people while delivering his opening statement in the Maguire hearing. For those who don’t remember that hearing by that name, it’s the one where Democrat Impeachment Chairman opened with this speech:

Here’s the heart of Schiff’s speech:

horn of its rambling character and in not so many words, this is the essence of what the president communicates. We’ve been very good to your country, very good. No other country has done as much as we have. But you know what? I don’t see much reciprocity here. I hear what you want. I have a favor I want from you though. And I’m going to say this only seven times so you better listen good. I want you to make up dirt on my political opponent, understand. Lots of it. On this and on that. I’m going to put you in touch with people, not just any people, I am going to put you in touch with the attorney general of the United States, my Attorney General Bill Barr. He’s got the whole weight of the American law enforcement behind him.

In Schiff’s speech, it’s clear that he’s signaling that President Trump threatened Ukrainian President Zelensky with the withholding of military aid. According to Schiff’s fake phone call transcript, that military aid would be withheld from Ukraine if President Zelensky didn’t “make up dirt on my political opponent, understand. Lots of it.”

The bottom line is this — Adam Schiff, the Democrats’ Impeachment Chairman, lied to Congress and the American people. This isn’t just a silly prank. Schiff’s speech is permanently part of the Congressional Record. Minnesota’s ‘moderate Democrats’ didn’t think Schiff’s dishonest speech was worthy of official criticism. These ‘moderate Democrats’ thought that the man leading an investigation to remove the president of the United States shouldn’t be officially criticized. Perhaps, it’s because they bought Schiff’s BS that this was a parody. If that’s a parody, how do Phillips, Peterson and Craig explain this paragraph from Schiff’s speech?

This is in sum and character what the president was trying to communicate with the president of Ukraine. It would be funny if it wasn’t such a graphic betrayal of the president’s oath of office. But as it does represent a real betrayal, there’s nothing the president says here that is in America’s interest after all.

Schiff said it with his own words that “this is in sum and character what the president was trying to communicate with the president of Ukraine.” That’s a pretty fanciful interpretation of the transcript. Here’s what President Trump actually told President Zelensky:

I would like you to do us a favor though because our country has been through a lot and Ukraine knows a lot about it. I would like you to find out what happened with this whole situation with Ukraine, they say Crowdstrike … I guess you have one of your wealthy people … The server, they say Ukraine has it. There are a lot of things that went on, the whole situation … I think you’re surrounding yourself with some of the same people. I would like to have the Attorney General call you or your people and I would like you to get to the bottom of it. As you said yesterday, that whole nonsense ended with a very poor performance by a man named Robert Mueller, an incompetent performance but they say a lot of it started with Ukraine. Whatever you can do, it’s very important that you do it if that’s possible.

Nothing in Schiff’s speech sounds like anything from Trump’s phone call. It’s appalling that Minnesota’s supposedly moderate Democrats bought Schiff’s BS and voted the way that Pelosi wanted them to vote. They aren’t moderates. They’re just gullible Democrats.

Democrats can’t pretend that they’re moderates because they’re doing things that are historically unprecedented. Recently, Schiff said that he’s essentially doing the work of a special counsel. I don’t disagree with that. The problem is that Special Counsel Robert Mueller was officially employed by the DOJ. Schiff’s biggest problem is that the DOJ is part of the executive branch. Impeachment chairs are fixtures of the legislative branch.

The Constitution matters

This says everything:

Former special counsel Robert Mueller led the Russia probe, but no new prosecutor has been tapped by Attorney General William Barr for the Ukraine matter. That leaves House Democrats with only a whistleblower’s complaint rather than boxes of investigators’ evidence to guide them. “Congress has to do that,” Schiff said, because the Justice Department believes “there’s nothing to see here.”

Schiff, the chairman of the House intelligence committee, is leading the probe at the direction of House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and proceeding like the prosecutor he once was, staging a grand jury-like process that has been pilloried by Republicans. As Schiff works behind closed doors to build the case, Republicans accuse Democrats of waging an unfair, and according to the White House, illegitimate, investigation. But Schiff says the House has few other choices than to build the case on its own.

Nowhere in the Constitution does it say that members of the legislative branch have the authority to impanel investigative grand juries. If the DOJ tells the legislative branch to pound sand if the House refers cases to the DOJ, that’s what happens when you lose elections. When Republicans made criminal referrals to Eric Holder’s DOJ about the IRS scandal and Holder rejected those referrals, Trey Gowdy couldn’t impanel a grand jury to investigate Eric Holder. That was it. If the DOJ says no, then the answer is no. Period.

The thing is that Schiff didn’t bother trying to hide his attempt to be an investigator/prosecutor. He said this right out in the open.

At 4:00 pm this afternoon, I received an email from the Fischbach for Congress campaign committee. The email’s opening paragraph said “Michelle Fischbach, the former Lt. Governor of Minnesota and candidate for Minnesota’s 7th Congressional District, today reported raising an impressive $100,000 in her first quarterly filing with the Federal Election Commission.”

Then it continued, saying “Fischbach’s federal committee, Fischbach for Congress, will show receipts of over $100,000, with nearly $85,000 cash-on-hand for the filing period ending September 30, 2019. Making the numbers even more impressive is the fact that the committee wasn’t filed with the Federal Election Commission until September 3, 2019, which gave Fischbach only 27 days to fundraise before the quarterly reporting deadline. Minnesotans accounted for 95% of all donations, with almost half coming from residents of western Minnesota’s 7th District, including over 500 donors who gave $200 or less.”

That’s the definition of a strong fundraising first month. What’s most impressive to me is that 95% of her first month’s contributions came from Minnesotans. The next most impressive thing in this report is the amount of small donors. The reason why that’s important is because a high percentage of those contributions are likely voters.

What’s depressing, though not surprising, is the fact that Google is suppressing good news for Republicans. Here’s what I found in searching for articles on Lt. Gov. Fischbach’s fundraising report:

After reading this part of the Fischbach for Congress email, it has to be asked if Collin Peterson will run for re-election:

Fischbach’s strong first quarterly report demonstrates that her campaign is setting the foundation for a robust and aggressive operation and confirms the highly competitive nature of the 7th District race. In fact, immediately after she announced her campaign in September and pointing to her entrance into the race, Cook Political Report and Sabato’s Crystal Ball both moved Minnesota’s 7th District from Leans Democrat to Toss Up.

I can’t imagine Peterson likes the fact that AOC and Ilhan Omar have taken over his party. Still, it’s difficult picturing Peterson giving up without a fight. If he runs, which I think is likely, then I think it’s likely that he’ll lose.

These fundraising numbers, plus the shifting of the race from leans Democrat to straight toss-up, are indicators that this race has shifted. That shift didn’t favor Cranky Collin, either. Finally, the fact that the overwhelming majority of Fischbach’s support came from Minnesota can’t be read as anything except as a positive.