Archive for the ‘Collin Peterson’ Category

This video should worry Democrats:

The Democrats think they’ve caught Sen. Torrey Westrom in a ‘Mitt Romney moment’. In reality, they’ve shown 7th District voters that their activists aren’t the brightest people around. Here’s what I’m talking about:

Man: [During] the Eisenhower Administration, we built our infrastructure, our roads, our bridges, our schools, our fire halls, we built that during that era and the tax rate on the wealthiest people was 60 percent, and it was an honor for them, and society looked up to them, they were pillars in their community and respected, and we appreciated them. And now all I see is scapegoating on the poor, blaming people on food assistance when they can’t even get a part-time job… I’m saying that [rich people] pay less in income tax than poor people do.

Westrom: Even though 48 percent of Americans don’t pay taxes?

The first indication that this activist isn’t the brightest bulb in the chandelier is his implication that high income taxes in the 1950s paid for the interstate highway system. Income taxes didn’t have a thing to do with building and maintaining the interstate highway system:

About 70 percent of the construction and maintenance costs of Interstate Highways in the United States have been paid through user fees, primarily the fuel taxes collected by the federal, state, and local governments. To a much lesser extent they have been paid for by tolls collected on toll highways and bridges. The Highway Trust Fund, established by the Highway Revenue Act in 1956, prescribed a three-cent-per-gallon fuel tax, soon increased to 4.5 cents per gallon. In 1993 the tax was increased to 18.4 cents per gallon, where it remains as of 2012.

The next indicator that this activist isn’t the brightest bulb in the chandelier is that he thinks “poor people” pay more income taxes than “the rich.” Sen. Westrom dispatched that argument by telling the activist that “48 percent of Americans” don’t pay income taxes.

This wasn’t a vilification of “poor people.” It was simply a statement of statistical fact. It’s interesting that the DFL activist thinks stating a statistical fact is an act of vilification. Sen. Westrom finally had enough of the activist’s rantings:

Man: The Bible says, ‘To whom much has been given, much shall be required.’ Now [the wealthy] built that infrastructure and they did that out of the goodness of their hearts in the ’50s and now it’s like pulling teeth to get an extra dime out of the wealthiest people in this society, and I’m tired of it.

Westrom: Let me tell you, versus your philosophy, my philosophy is, don’t overtax the citizens, let them keep their hard-earned wealth [and] take care of themselves as much as they can and we do for the communities that individually they can’t do for themselves. You would rather tax everybody’s income, take it away from them, redistribute it, government knows best…

Before getting into Sen. Westrom’s reply, let’s focus on the activist’s statement that “the wealthy built that infrastructure…out of the goodness of their hearts…” That’s the picture of delusion. The truth is that “the wealthy” built much of this nation’s infrastructure to create bigger profits for their companies.

As for Sen. Westrom’s statement, he’s right in his philosophy of letting the people keep their money. The thought that the federal government knows best is intellectually laughable. For instance, Minnesota had a great health insurance system that featured one of the lowest rates of uninsured in the nation. In 2011, 93% of Minnesotans were insured. In 2013, thanks directly to the Affordable Care Act, that rate of insured ‘jumped’ to 95%. It just cost Minnesotans the paltry amount of $160,000,000 and counting.

The MNsure website still isn’t working. In fact, it won’t be working correctly until after this fall’s open enrollment. Thank God for the federal government’s intervention. I don’t know what we would’ve done without their assistance, though I’d love to find out.

This video should dispel the notion of government being benevolent:

Simply put, Sen. Westrom is right in ridiculing this activist. In fact, it’s best for him to just put this behind him so he can highlight his positive agenda and Collin Peterson’s history of Nancy Pelosi pushing him around. (Think voting for Cap and Trade after promising his constituents he wouldn’t vote for it.)

Sen. Westrom won’t take the 7th District for granted like Collin Peterson has for the last 20 years. Sen. Westrom has a history of getting things done. That’s the type of congressman Minnesota’s 7th District needs.

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This article highlights the intelligent fight Torrey Westrom will fight in Congress if he defeats Collin Peterson:

“The Keystone pipeline needs to be built, I am here to tell you, and it should have been built last year, not delayed another several months as we are seeing under this current Administration,” Westrom said. Without the pipeline, oil producers are using an increasing number of railcars to transport their supply, which is squeezing out farmers and propane suppliers.

“[Grain] elevators from the south end of the 7th District to the north tell me they are still going to have last year’s crop when this year’s crop comes in, and they can’t get enough extra cars to ship it out,” Westrom continued. “That’s unacceptable. We need to build energy and infrastructure projects, like the Keystone Pipeline. That’s something I will advocate for.”

When it comes to getting things done in DC, Collin Peterson is about as worthless as a potted plant. He didn’t stand up to President Obama and the environmental activists that run the EPA or the spineless diplomats in the State Department.

Thanks to Congressman Peterson’s spinelessness, grain elevators in Minnesota’s 7th District are hurting. Minnesota’s 7th District doesn’t need a DC insider with ‘influence’. Minnesota’s 7th District needs someone who gets things done.

Collin Peterson is rich with DC insider influence. Unfortunatly, he isn’t the type of congressman who gets important things done that help his district.

If voters in Minnesota’s 7th District dump Peterson, they’ll immediately see the difference in the number of important things that get done compared with Peterson’s potted plant routine.

The panel also asked the 7th District candidate what can be done to reduce government regulatory delays. “Indecision is very paralyzing for industry and for farmers,” Westrom said about the overregulation that effects Minnesota’s farmers. “Some sort of cap on decisions, so people can count on a yes or a no, or at least know what needs to be changed in a timely period, is something we should aim for.” Westrom emphasized that we should “not have unelected bureaucrats continue to delay processes.”

Peterson loves DC’s ineffective status quo. He doesn’t really have to do anything. All he has to do is talk about how much institutional influence he has. What Peterson can’t talk about is how his presence in DC is helping reduce regulations or improve life in Minnesota’s 7th District.

Throughout the forum, panelists expressed concern about government overreach, asking other candidates about the Environmental Protection Agency’s proposed rule on navigable waters and delay on the Renewable Fuel Standard.

The EPA is a farmer’s worst nightmare. Daily, they micromanage what a farmer can and can’t do. Their new rule will get struck down by the Supreme Court because it goes far beyond the legislative language of the Clean Water Act, aka the CWA.

Not that Collin Peterson cares but the EPA can’t implement a rule that goes beyond the legislative language. That language currently says the EPA can regulate navigable waters. The EPA’s rule would allow them to regulate waters not considered navigable.

At one point, Collin Peterson was a tolerable congressman. Those days have passed. In 2009, Nancy Pelosi corrupted him. He hasn’t been a Blue Dog Democrat since. That says one thing: it’s time for a change.

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The late Jim Oberstar submitted a bill in 2010 to amend the Clean Water Act so that the EPA would have jurisdiction over every drop of water anywhere in the United States. If you think that’s hyperbole, you’d better think again:

The “waters of the U.S.” issue is back. H. R. 5088, America’s Commitment to Clean Water Act (ACCWA), was recently introduced by House Committee of Transportation Chairman Jim Oberstar (D-Minn.)

Like Oberstar’s previous bill, ACCWA does two things. First, it eliminates the term “navigable” from all sections of the Clean Water Act (CWA). The term “navigable waters of the U.S.” is used more than 80 times in the CWA. NACo continues to oppose the removal of “navigable” from the act, because of the danger its absence poses to years of hard-won jurisdictional parameters.

Second, ACCWA removes the reference to “activities affecting” those waters and redefines “waters of the U.S.” by using a hybrid of current agency regulatory definitions. While ACCWA uses language based on existing agency regulations for a “water of the U.S.,” it is not identical to existing regulations. Furthermore, certain sections of the existing regulations were deleted and new language was added to the “waters of the U.S.” definition in ACCWA.

This is important because Oberstar’s bill didn’t go anywhere in 2010 and because the Obama administration is attempting to implement these changes through an EPA regulation:

Today, Torrey Westrom submitted comments to the Environmental Protection Agency over the EPA’s proposed rule to redefine “waters of the U.S.” – or navigable waters – under the Clean Water Act.

The new rule would redefine navigable waters as any body of water that is adjacent to or near a larger downstream water source, making it subject to federal regulations and permitting. The rule would also allow the EPA to seek comment on other waters, which could later be subject to regulation as well.

Sen. Westrom submitted this comment:

The Environmental Protection Agency’s latest proposal to change the definition of ‘navigable waters’ under the Clean Water Act is a naked attempt to expand their own authority beyond the scope of the law and will have devastating consequences for Minnesota’s farmers, families, land owners and small business owners.

Congress was clear when it passed the Clean Water Act that the EPA’s authority would cover ‘navigable’ waters, but this new rule will extend the EPA’s authority to everything from small ponds to ditches in fields. This is government overreach, pure and simple. Federal officials are throwing the legal definition to the wayside and creating nearly limitless regulatory authority, which will hurt our communities. Any changes should be made through the legislative process, where voters can keep government accountable, rather than through a federal agency’s rule making.

Farmers and small business owners in places like where I live in Elbow Lake, and our surrounding agriculture communities in northwest Minnesota, cannot afford any more burdensome regulations handed down from the federal government. After a historically harsh winter and with a sluggish economy, the last thing America’s agriculture sector needs is unnecessary burden that will stifle business. We know our towns, down to the ponds and ditches in our fields, better than any unelected bureaucrat from Washington.

The EPA should ditch the proposed rule, which will harm farming communities and families.”

This is the key paragraph from Sen. Westrom’s comment:

Congress was clear when it passed the Clean Water Act that the EPA’s authority would cover ‘navigable’ waters, but this new rule will extend the EPA’s authority to everything from small ponds to ditches in fields. This is government overreach, pure and simple. Federal officials are throwing the legal definition to the wayside and creating nearly limitless regulatory authority, which will hurt our communities. Any changes should be made through the legislative process, where voters can keep government accountable, rather than through a federal agency’s rule making.

Democrat front groups are undoubtedly cheering the EPA’s proposed rule. These Democrat front groups, like the Sierra Club, the Nature Conservancy and other like-minded environmental activist organizations want the federal government to have jurisdiction over every drop of water in the US, regardless of whether it’s navigable water that forms the border between Minnesota and Wisconsin or whether it’s a low spot on private property in Idaho that occasionally has water in it.

The Clean Water Act, aka the CWA, specified which waters were covered by the Act. Because the CWA was passed by Congress and signed by the President, the legislation’s scope is limited. If they’d wanted the federal government to control all of the water in the United States, they should’ve written that into the bill. That’s where the Sierra Club’s, the Nature Conservancy’s and the League of Conservation Voters’ plan falls apart.

Had that been written into the text of the CWA, people would’ve been outraged.

Further, the executive branch isn’t allowed to change the clearly written language of a signed bill. Only the legislative branch is allowed to do that. The executive branch’s responsibility is to “faithfully execute” the laws that Congress enacts. If they don’t like specific provisions in a law, their only constitutionally sanctioned option is to talk Congress into changing that language.

Sen. Westrom is right in criticizing the federal government’s plan to govern through executive fiat. This isn’t a kingdom. It’s a constitutional republic with a clearly written Constitution.

Frankly, I don’t care if the EPA likes or hates the CWA. Their chief responsibility isn’t predicated on whether they like or hate a bill. Their chief responsibility is to faithfully execute the laws that are on the books, not the laws they wished were on the books.

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About an hour ago, I got this email notification from the Torrey Westrom for Congress campaign:

Sen. Bill Weber Endorses Torrey Westrom for Congress

Cites Westrom’s Integrity and Common Sense in Endorsement Statement

(ALEXANDRIA, Minn.) – Today, Torrey Westrom, candidate for Minnesota’s 7th congressional District, announced the endorsement of Sen. Bill Weber (R-District 22), who has served with Westrom in the Minnesota Senate and cited the integrity and common sense Westrom would bring to Washington, D.C.

“I am honored to support Torrey Westrom for the Seventh District Congressional seat. His knowledge of the issues, his experience in St. Paul and his personal values make him an excellent choice to represent the people of the 7th District in Washington D.C.,” Sen. Weber said in his endorsement statement. “Serving with him in the Minnesota Senate makes me confident that Torrey has the integrity and common sense that is sorely lacking in our nation’s Capitol and which is needed now more than ever!”

“I am honored to have the endorsement of my friend and Senate colleague, Bill Weber, who knows that Washington could use a lot more of our Minnesota values,” Westrom said. “The 7th District needs a representative who will fight government waste and overreach, while standing up for a balanced budget and common sense policies.”

Westrom is a top recruit in the race to replace Collin Peterson, and was named one of the first “Young Guns” in the 2014 election cycle by national Republicans. Westrom was dubbed “Collin Peterson’s worst nightmare” by the, and Politico said, “Peterson is expected to face a tough race in Minnesota’s 7th District.”

It isn’t that Collin Peterson’s voting record is as far left as Keith Ellison’s or Nancy Pelosi’s. It’s that he’s a Blue Dog Democrat until Ms. Pelosi tells him to vote for a bill. That’s why he flip-flopped on cap & trade legislation in 2009:

Peterson, the chairman, said Tuesday he voted for the bill only because he knew it wouldn’t become law immediately. He had urged support for the bill after winning concessions that he said would benefit agriculture and ease the impact of higher energy costs on rural residents. “In spite of the fact that they gave me everything I wanted in agriculture…it needs some more work,” he said.

Like I said then, how can a bill still need some work if then-Speaker Pelosi gave him everything Peterson wanted? Taking that sentence literally will give people intellectual whiplash. What’s exceptionally understandable is that Cap & Trade would’ve sent electricity prices skyrocketing for hard-working farmers in the 7th District.

Rather than trying to figure out what Peterson is saying, the 7th would be better off with a straight shooter like Torrey Westrom. People won’t need a decoder ring to figure out what Westrom is saying. With Westrom, what you see is what you get. That’s just one reason to vote for him.

Yesterday, I wrote this post about Westrom’s DC priorities:

There’s the Westrom agenda: regulatory reform, coupled with starting over with patient- and family-centered health care, followed by rebuilding America’s outdated energy infrastructure.

Those are three things that the 7th District needs badly. What it doesn’t need is a congressman who’s resting on his laurels instead of fighting for his district.

Federal regulators are hurting farmers in the 7th District. Collin Peterson hasn’t fought the regulators. Torrey Westrom will. That alone is enough justification to vote for Torrey Westrom.

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Larry Sabato’s latest predictions for House races have changed. One of the “tweaks” to Sabato’s predictions is about the Torrey Westrom-Collin Peterson race:

Rep. Collin Peterson (D, MN-7) — Likely Democratic to Leans Democratic: One of the more curious ad reservations in the DCCC’s $43.5 million, 36-district ad buy announced last month was a hefty $1.5 million to defend Peterson, a 12-term incumbent whose district gave President Obama just 44% in 2012 but who has not had a truly tough race in two decades. Republicans have trumpeted the candidacy of Torrey Westrom (R)…and are vowing to spend heavily against Peterson: They backed up those words by announcing a $3.2 million ad reservation in the Minneapolis/St Paul market, presumably to be used against Peterson and Rep. Rick Nolan (D, MN-8). The likeliest outcome here is that Peterson holds on for another term and then retires in 2016 or soon thereafter, giving the Republicans a much easier shot at a pickup. But this is a race where both sides appear fully engaged; add that to the district’s Red tint, and it merits a more competitive ratings.

Peterson hasn’t faced a top-tier candidate in twenty years. Torrey Westrom is definitely a top-tier candidate. In this article, I wrote that Torrey Westrom is Collin Peterson’s worst nightmare:

Sen. Westrom’s announcement got the Peterson campaign’s undivided attention for a plethora of reasons. First, Sen. Westrom is a fantastic, tireless campaigner. That alone sent the signal to Peterson that he’d better prepare for the toughest campaign of his life.

Should Peterson accept the challenge, Sen. Westrom will be the best opponent he’s faced since he defeated Arlan Stangeland, the incumbent at the time, in 1990. In fact, it isn’t guaranteed that Peterson will accept Sen. Westrom’s challenge. Peterson might simply retire rather than get fired by voters.

Second, Sen. Westrom has a fascinating political personality. Colleagues have said that people naturally warm up in his presence. (That’s likely why he’s a great campaigner.)

I haven’t seen any polling on this race. Still, it’s reasonable to think that the NRCC thinks this race is competitive. Prof. Sabato’s Crystal Ball highlights the race in this graphic:

There are several political lifetimes between now and Election Day so anything can happen. Peterson will campaign hard and he’s got incumbency on his side. Still, he’ll have to fight every day. He’ll have his record scrutinized like it’s never been scrutinized before, too.

This is one of the high-profile races in Minnesota that I’ll be keeping an eye one. While this race isn’t a toss-up at this point, that doesn’t mean it won’t get there before the end of summer.

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This morning, Torrey Westrom announced that he’s running to unseat Collin Peterson. Here’s Westrom’s statement accompanying his announcement:


Elbow Lake, MN – Today, State Senator Torrey Westrom will announce his plans to run for Congress in Minnesota’s 7th district.

“As Minnesota families are crushed by burdensome regulations and overreaching government policies like ObamaCare, it’s time Minnesotans had someone they could count on to be part of the solution in Washington, DC,” said Westrom. “Washington politicians are out of step with the priorities of Minnesotans and I’m running for Congress because I understand how that disconnect is bankrupting our future.”

Torrey Westrom was first elected to the Minnesota House of Representatives in 1997. Westrom is a conservative with a record of creating rural jobs and ensuring that the government operates within its means. Westrom is a strong supporter of smaller government and supports the need for a balanced budget amendment.

After losing his sight at the age of 14 in a farm-related accident, Westrom is a strong advocate for people with disabilities and eliminating barriers to help them become more independent in their living and employment opportunities. As a child, Westrom’s family dairy farmed in Wilmer, Minnesota, and later on the family farm in Elbow Lake. Now, Torrey and his wife, Anna, are small business owners, have three children and reside in Elbow Lake, Minnesota.

To learn more about Torrey Westrom, or to contribute, please visit:

Each election cycle brings out the rumors that Rep. Peterson is thinking about retiring. Each time, those rumors turn out not to be true. This year, Torrey Westrom didn’t wait for Peterson to retire. That’s why he jumped in. Westrom represents a strong candidate who will get substantial financial backing from the NRCC in addition to his own fundraising abilities.

Though I don’t have a read on whether Peterson is perceived to be vulnerable, there’s no doubt that Sen. Westrom is a candidate they’ll have to take seriously.

In 2008, Peterson won overwhelmingly. In 2010, Peterson’s share of the vote dropped from 72.2% to 55.2%. Last year, Peterson won by 26 points. The bad news for him is that his percentage of the vote only rose 5 points. Without an Obama wave to ride, Peterson has shown he’s vulnerable. In the past, he’s faced underwhelming opponents. That won’t be the case this year.

Whether this is the year that Peterson retires or the people fire him is still in doubt. What isn’t in doubt is that he’ll face an appealing, well-funded opponent. Also, there’s no doubt that Democrats will be running into strong headwinds like the economy and the Affordable Care Act.

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Moments ago, I received an email telling me that Sen. Rick Santorum endorsed Lee Byberg in his race against 11-term Congressman Collin Peterson:

“Lee Byberg is a passionate conservative and Patriot Voices looks forward to supporting his race for Congress. He is a committed fighter for life at every stage, supports free enterprise, will repeal ObamaCare, and believes we must change our burdensome tax structure.”

I’m asking readers of this blog that have time or treasure to consider helping Lee Byberg defeat Collin Peterson. I haven’t seen any polls of the district but I know people in CD-7 aren’t thrilled with a number of Collin Peterson’s votes.

To those readers of LFR living in CD-7, keep working hard. Expend as much energy on this great cause as is physically possible. Eliminating Oberstar in 2010 was a great victory for conservatives. Defeating Peterson in 2012 would definitely be a highlight for conservatives, whether they’re in Minnesota or across the nation.

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Wednesday afternoon, the House voted to approve Chip Cravaack’s land swap bill that had solid bipartisan support in the Minnesota legislature. The Mesabi Daily News is reporting that, despite the fact that this bill has the support of political opposites like Chip Cravaack and Tommie Ruckavina, the DFL members of the Minnesota delegation voted against it.

Rep. McCollum took a particularly harsh beating during the debate:

When McCollum said it was “completely unnecessary” because the state law had already set the process in motion, Republican Rep. Rob Bishop of Utah said: “The state wants to do it quickly, the federal Forest Service does not. It helps the kids of Minnesota to take it away from an agency that moves at glacial speed.”

After that specious argument failed, Ms. McCollum tried a different argument, only to be shot down again:

When Rep. McCollum said repeatedly that there was not a map related to the issue, Rep. Cravaack responded with a map of the area in question alongside him. “Well, here’s the map,” he said, pointing out the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources and the U.S. Forest Service have the map and it’s also available to the public online.

It’s pretty obvious that Rep. McCollum either doesn’t know what she’s talking about or she’s willing to shaft students to prevent Chip’s bill from passing.

What’s disgusting is that DFL Reps. Ellison, McCollum, Peterson and Walz voted against a significant funding source for K-12 students. So much for the DFL being the party that’s “for the children.”

That isn’t the only disgraceful behavior on behalf of the DFL members of the Minnesota delegation:

Minnesota Democratic U.S. Sens. Amy Klobuchar and Al Franken would not answer directly a question of whether they support the House measure passed on Wednesday, but did endorse a land swap in some form yet to be spelled out. And, they said, they are collaborating on legislation.

“I understand how important this is for our schools and local economies in northern Minnesota, and that’s why I continue to support a land exchange and am working with similar legislation with Senator Franken to get it done,” Sen. Klobuchar said in an e-mailed statement to the Mesabi Daily News following a call to her Washington office.

A statement from Sen. Franken mirrored Klobuchar’s.

Minnesota Democratic U.S. Sens. Amy Klobuchar and Al Franken would not answer directly a question of whether they support the House measure passed on Wednesday, but did endorse a land swap in some form yet to be spelled out. And, they said, they are collaborating on legislation.

That’s code for saying they’re killing Chip’s bill. Sen. Franken and Sen. Klobuchar know that their “similar legislation” would require a conference committee, which wastes valuable time during a lame duck session.

That’s a best case scenario with Harry Reid running the Senate and Sens. Franken and Klobuchar doing their best to sabotage the bill that Chip, Mark Dayton and Tommie Ruckavina support.

This vote proves that Tim Walz and Collin Peterson aren’t moderates. Voting with Raul Grijalva, Betty McCollum, Emanuel Cleaver, John Conyers, Dennis Kucinich, Jim McDermott and Keith Ellison won’t improve Peterson’s or Walz’s moderate ratings.

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The political party that Hubert Humphrey formed back in the late 1940’s doesn’t exist anymore. Back then, Humphrey convinced farmers and unions that his fledgling party was their home.

For some time, the DFL really did represent those interests pretty well. Then came the 1970’s. That’s when the DFL started drifting away from its founding principles.

Nationally, the anti-war movement caused it to drift away from its belief that America is the greatest force for good in the world. Significant-sized parts of the Democratic Party, both nationally and in Minnesota, got the title of being the ‘blame America first’ crowd that former UN ambassador Jeane Kirkpatrick talked about.

The Sierra Club and other environmentalist organizations caused the DFL to become more of a metrocentric party. That’s when the biggest drift from supporting miners and farmers happened.

These days, the DFL is essentially a metrocentric party. Miners’ input isn’t welcomed in the party. In fact, they’ve lost their seat at the table to the environmentalists.

Proof of that is supplied by Gov. Dayton’s delaying the mineral rights auction for a year. When the Executive Council finally approved the mineral rights auction, an organization tied to Gov. Dayton’s first ex-wife announced that they’d do everything possible to prevent PolyMet Mining from becoming reality:

Conservation Minnesota, Friends of the Boundary Waters Wilderness and the Minnesota Center for Environmental Advocacy are targeting the proposed PolyMet mine near Hoyt Lakes and the proposed Twin Metals mine near Ely.

The campaign includes the web site, a 40-page report examining mining in detail, a Facebook community, and four billboards along Interstate 35 between the Twin Cities and Duluth to reach summer travelers.

Environmental groups call it sulfide mining because the copper, nickel, gold and other metals are locked up in minerals that contain sulfur and can produce sulfuric acid and other contaminants when exposed to the elements. They fear toxic runoff would threaten Lake Superior and the Boundary Waters Canoe Area. And they say the environmental record of such mining elsewhere is poor.

“These are not our grandfather’s iron ore mines,” said Molly Pederson, government affairs director for Conservation Minnesota. “This is a completely different kind of mining.”

The unmistakable message to mining unions is that their industry isn’t welcome in the DFL anymore.

Environmentalists 1, unions 0.

Sens. Franken and Klobuchar told the unions that they weren’t welcome when they voted to keep construction unions unemployed. That happened when they voted to prevent the Keystone XL Pipeline from becoming reality. That’s unforgivable considering the fact that unemployment in the construction industry is 14.7% nationally.

Environmentalists 2, unions still nothing.

When Hubert Humphrey started the DFL, public employee unions didn’t exist. Today, they’ve achieved sacred cow status. Whatever Tom Dooher, Javier Morillo-Alicea and Eliot Seide says they want, Gov. Dayton and the legislature do without question or hesitation.

The DFL is so endebted to these unions that Gov. Dayton signed an unconstitutional executive order in an attempt to unionize child care small businesses.

It’s time that the DFL admitted that it isn’t interested in supporting the Steelworkers Union or the United Mineworkers. Jim Oberstar’s vote for Cap and Trade was seen by the mineworkers rank-and-file as a vote to destroy the mining industry in Minnesota.

Similarly, Collin Peterson’s vote for Cap and Trade was potentially damaging to farmers. Throughout that fight, Rep. Peterson insisted that he wouldn’t hold hearings on Cap and Trade. Then Queen Nancy came calling for his vote, at which point his vote flipped. That’s when Rep. Peterson threw farmers under the bus.

Today, the Democrat-Farmer-Laborer Party doesn’t exist. It’s transitioned into the Democrat-Public Employee Unions-Environmentalist Party.

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During Bill Clinton’s time in office, Blue Dog Democrats were integral parts of the Democratic Party. Since the Soros-engineered progressive takeover, they’ve played a significantly less important role.

Thanks to then-Speaker Pelosi’s pushing them into voting for Cap and Trade, the stimulus and Obamacare, Blue Dog numbers are shrinking. According to this article, things might get worse for Blue Dogs:

Two years after the 2010 midterm elections decimated their ranks, the coalition of conservative Democrats is poised to get pummeled again in November, moving the Blue Dogs dangerously close to extinction.

Of the 24 remaining Blue Dogs, five are not seeking re-election. More than a half-dozen others are facing treacherous contests in which their re-election hopes are in jeopardy.

It’s a rough time to occupy the right wing of the Democratic Party.

“It’s a tough environment out there,” said former Alabama Rep. Bud Cramer, a longtime member of the House Blue Dog Coalition. “Their numbers are down. Redistricting has not been kind to them.”

While there’s no doubt that redistricting didn’t help Blue Dog Democrats, it’s true that their refusal to fight against the stimulus, Obamacare and Cap and Trade hasn’t helped either.

When Collin Peterson switched from opposing Cap and Trade to supporting it because he’d received some meaningless tradeoffs, the Blue Dog brand was tarnished.

When Bart Stupak switched his support for Obamacare after holding out against Obamacare because it contained government funding for abortions, the Blue Dog brand took a hit.

After the Obamacare votes, the joke was that the Stupaks and Petersons were Blue Dogs “until Pelosi told them they couldn’t be” for a bill. While that might sound logical in DC, people in the real world demand that their representatives be principled people, not politicians with their hands out waiting for the next deal.

Blue Dog Democrats voted for too many far left pieces of legislation to pass themselves off as centrists. Far too often, they’ve let Ms. Pelosi push them around.

Ironically, GOP majorities in the House and Senate, coupled with a Romney administration, might invigorate the Blue Dog brand. This isn’t good news for Blue Dogs:

Boswell, meanwhile, is competing against GOP Rep. Tom Latham in a new southwestern Iowa-based district. While Boswell at first appeared to be the early front-runner, Democrats now worry about his slow fundraising pace compared with Latham’s ever-ballooning war chest. Latham has also received air support from American Crossroads, a deep-pocketed third-party group that has crowded the airwaves with TV ads taking aim at Boswell.

If Rep. Latham keeps raising money at a fast clip, that could lead to November difficulties for Boswell. The fact that Boswell’s fundraising totals are worrying Democrats says that he isn’t getting the voter support he’ll need this cycle.

That isn’t good news going against a polished incumbent.

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