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This St. Cloud Times article reports that Dan Wolgamott “will formally request a recount after the canvassing boards of Stearns, Benton and Sherburne counties and the state have certified the election results.” Wolgamott was defeated by Jerry Relph in the election to see who would represent SD-14 in the State Senate for 2017-2021.

According to the article, “Wolgamott said he would request the recount ‘to ensure that our voting process was as fair and accurate as Minnesotans expect it to be.'” The truth is that he won’t win. If Mr. Wolgamott doesn’t know that, then it’s a good thing he wasn’t elected because he isn’t smart enough to represent SD-14.

Seriously, it’s impossible to make up a 142-vote margin in a race where 37,000 votes were cast. When King Banaian was elected to represent HD-15B in November, 2010, he initially won by 10 votes. That triggered an automatic recount. In the recount, Dr. Banaian gained an additional 4 votes. Carol Lewis, his opponent that year, gained 1 vote, meaning that Dr. Banaian officially won by 13 votes, not 10.

In 2014, Jim Knoblach defeated Zach Dorholt by 69 votes. Dorholt didn’t bother asking for a recount, probably because he knew it was a lost cause.

To be fair, it’s entirely possible that the DFL powers-that-be might’ve ordered Wolgamott to request a recount because the majority of the Senate potentially hangs on the outcome to this race.

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Kirsti Marohn’s article offers insight into how Zach Dorholt is trying to defeat Jim Knoblach. One thing he’s doing is he’s overinflating his professional resume while de-emphasizing his partisan resume.

When he said “I get to see how the system, the health care system, the social system, the economic system, helps them get up and out or keeps them down. I would dare to say that that is the most unique and also most needed insight within government today”, he’s intentionally de-emphasizing the fact that, as a partisan DFLer, Dorholt supports single-payer health care. He admitted he supports it during the St. Cloud Times’ SD-14 candidate forum, which I wrote about in this post.

Dorholt’s also trying to de-emphasize the fact that he’s partially responsible for the MNsure/ACA crisis that Minnesota families are fighting through. Dorholt voted to create MNsure. Thanks to his support for the ACA, farmers and other small businesspeople will pay sky-high health insurance premiums, have fewer choices when picking insurers and will have to deal with unaffordable deductibles. That isn’t the type of voting record I’m looking for.

Further, Dorholt is trying to hide the fact that he’s bought and paid for by the DFL’s special interests. It isn’t that he’s dedicated to serving his constituents. It’s that he’s committed to doing whatever the DFL’s special interest puppetmasters tell him to do.

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I’ve said repeatedly that the DFL’s tethering to the truth is loose at best. This pro-Dorholt LTE proves that the DFL, collectively, is incapable of logic, too.

I know that because the LTE says “Zach will fight for health care that’s affordable and works for all of us. He works in the mental health field. He knows and understands mental health and will fight for health care that meets the needs of those living with a mental health disorder. There is much work to be done in our current health care system, but Zach is ready for the challenge.” Perhaps this person isn’t in frequent touch with events in St. Paul. Perhaps this person is just dishonest. Perhaps this person isn’t capable of connecting the dots.

Whatever the reason for her not reaching the right conclusion, the truth is that Dorholt voted for MNsure, which is giving farmers and other small businesses huge health insurance premium increases, narrow networks, fewer choices of insurers and unaffordable deductibles. Dorholt is the person who’s given us this crisis.

What part of that suggests that Dorholt “is ready for the challenge” of fixing what he and the DFL broke?

This LTE suffers from the same disappointing detachment from reality as the first LTE. Check this paragraph out:

He has said “I am running because I have always had a passion for those left behind, for those purposefully or unintentionally left out, for those who live in the “shadows” of life, because ever since I was a kid I could identify with and empathize with them. I could understand them. I knew if their voice could be heard, understood and represented… we would all do better.”

Where was this compassion for people when the DFL debated the forced unionization of in-home child care providers? They lobbied the legislature for almost 24 hours, telling the DFL that they didn’t want to be represented by AFSCME. These businesspeople repeatedly told DFL legislators, Dorholt included, that they opposed the bill.

Dorholt voted for the forced unionization of these businesspeople anyway. He didn’t hesitate when he plunged the button and told these women that he knew better. That was the last weekend of the 2013 session. Also that session, Dorholt voted for major tax increases on farmers and warehousing operations. He did that despite their constant lobbying against the tax increases. Then he got criticized by several businesspeople after the session. The next February, Dorholt voted to repeal the tax increases he’d just voted to create.

That November, his constituents fired Dorholt for not representing them. That November, his constituents fired him because Dorholt represented the DFL leadership and the DFL’s special interest puppetmasters, not them.

This November, let’s remind Mr. Dorholt that we still reject his representation of the DFL leadership and their special interest allies. I’ll be voting for the man with the lengthy list of bipartisan accomplishments, a man who’s done the things that Dorholt only talks about. I’ll be voting for Jim Knoblach.

This morning, I paid a quick visit to Zach Dorholt’s priorities page to see what Tina Flint-Smith Alida Messenger told him he believes. Earlier this week, at the St. Cloud Times-sponsored candidate forum, Dorholt said that he’d support a single-payer health care system. That was startling news to most of his constituents.

It’s startling because Dorholt avoided talking about the subject on his priorities page. On Dorholt’s priorities page, he said “As someone who works in the healthcare field I regularly see issues that if reformed, could make healthcare more efficient and affordable. Too many policies are made in St. Paul without the guidance of those who actually work with patients on a day to day basis. When elected, I will work to make sure that healthcare remains accessible and affordable to all of our citizens and that we get our fair share of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act from Washington.”

First, it’s noteworthy that Dorholt is an ideologue first. It’s incidental that he works “in the health care field.” Further, it’s noteworthy that working in the health care field doesn’t automatically make you an expert on health care policy. That isn’t to say we shouldn’t have health care professionals on the MNsure board. I’m just arguing that we shouldn’t just pick someone for the board because they work in the health care industry.

Next and most importantly, Dorholt’s a little late in saying he’d “make sure that healthcare remains accessible and affordable to all our citizens.” The premiums in the individual market aren’t affordable. That isn’t just my opinion. It’s also Gov. Dayton’s opinion (sometimes) and Bill Clinton’s opinion:

It’s worth noting that Gov. Dayton initially said that the Affordable Care Act wasn’t affordable 2 weeks ago. This week, he’s written an op-ed saying things aren’t so bad. I’m betting that Hillary’s campaign called him and lectured him on saying something like that.

Finally, Dorholt can’t admit that the system Minnesota had prior to Obamacare/MNsure, complete with its high-risk pool, did a fantastic job insuring people with pre-existing conditions while keeping health insurance premiums for healthy people relatively stable. I’ve said this before and I’ll repeat it here: the federal government should’ve modeled their plan after Minnesota’s system. Unfortunately for Minnesota, our senators crumpled like spineless wimps and voted to destroy Minnesota’s system.

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Warren Bradbury’s LTE highlights the fact that the DFL thinks voters are stupid. Bradbury said that “There was no stalemate on funding vital transportation programs.” That’s technically true because the DFL legislature totally ignored transportation issues when they controlled the legislature.

The DFL ignored transportation issues because they were too busy passing a bill to build a $90,000,000 office building for fat-cat politicians. The DFL ignored transportation issues because they were too busy imposing tax increases on farmers and businesses with warehouse operations. The DFL ignored transportation issues because they were too busy shoving unionization down the throats of in-home child care providers.

Then-Rep. Dorholt voted for each of those things in his first year. In his second year, after getting blistered by his constituents for his votes on raising taxes, he voted to repeal the tax increases he voted for in his first year.

This LTE says “As state representative from 2013-2014, Zachary Dorholt balanced the budget, got all our district bonding bills passed and reduced local school tax burdens through increasing state funding.” Actually, then-Rep. Dorholt didn’t reduce “local school tax burdens.” I know because I wrote this post to highlight how Dorholt failed to lower property taxes:

St. Cloud school district has imposed its largest tax levy increase in six years for 2015. The district’s property-tax levy will increase by $3.3 million, or 14.75 percent, to nearly $26 million. The school board voted unanimously Thursday night to approve the 2015 levy. District officials say the increase is needed to pay for a spate of improvements to facilities.

This LTE is dishonest, too:

Zach has worked diligently for the people of this legislative district, and, with your help, we can return him to finish this good work, and continue to move our state forward.

This is what that paragraph looks like if written truthfully:

Zach has worked diligently for the union special interests. He ignored in-home child care providers who opposed forced unionization, instead siding with the unions that contribute thousands of dollars to his campaigns.

The forced unionization bill passed on a straight party-line vote, with Dorholt voting with AFSCME. This past March, in-home child care providers told the DFL that they thoroughly rejected the DFL’s forced unionization:

In the end, in-home child care providers rejected AFSCME’s forced unionization plan. In fact, the vote wasn’t that close. According to this article, the ‘vote was 1,014-392 in a Tuesday count by the state Bureau of Mediation Services from ballots mailed to providers last month.”

The truth is that Dorholt is a special interest magnet. He wouldn’t have gotten elected if not for his campaigns being funded and run by the DFL’s special interest allies. A quick glance at Dorholt’s campaign finance report highlights the fact that Mr. Dorholt is bought and paid for by the unions:

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The best thing that can be said about the DFL’s solution to the MNsure disaster is that they’re MIA. First, let’s state clearly that MNsure is a financial disaster for Minnesotans. Heather Carlson’s article highlights that fact by stating “Insurance company rates announced last week show that residents in southeastern Minnesota who are looking to buy individual policies will once again be faced with the highest premiums in the state.
There will also be less choice. Blue Cross/Blue Shield announced in June it would no longer sell policies in the state’s individual market. That means there are two insurance plans left for individual consumers to choose from in southeast Minnesota — Medica and Blue Plus.”

That’s the bad news. The terrible news is that “Medica’s rates will climb by an average of nearly 50 percent in 2017 and Blue Plus’ rates will increase by 55 percent. Medica will also cap the number of enrollees it will accept statewide at 50,000.”

Yesterday, I wrote this post to highlight Cindy Harner’s quote about the DFL’s candidates in SD-14:

We have a slate of local candidates ready to make a change for the better. They have fresh ideas and a passion for improving things important to Central Minnesota – things like infrastructure, education funding and health care.

Zach Dorholt’s priorities page doesn’t offer a solution:

As someone who works in the healthcare field I regularly see issues that if reformed, could make healthcare more efficient and affordable. Too many policies are made in St. Paul without the guidance of those who actually work with patients on a day to day basis. When elected, I will work to make sure that healthcare remains accessible and affordable to all of our citizens and that we get our fair share of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act from Washington.

That’s a dodge if ever I heard one. What’s worse is that it doesn’t address rising health insurance premiums. It doesn’t address shrinking insurance options. Dan Wolgamott’s thoughts on health care are similarly evasive:

Healthcare

  1. Fight for Fair Prescription Drug Coverage
  2. Increase Efficiency to Ensure Low Cost and Positive Outcomes
  3. Leverage Health Care Technology to Assist Patient Care
  4. Support a Minnesota-Based Approach to Health Care Reform

This isn’t how you communicate solutions, which is what’s required. It’s how to be evasive. I don’t want evasive politicians. I don’t take my car to a mechanic for him to work on it. I take the vehicle there to get fixed. I don’t vote for politicians that don’t offer specific solutions to the biggest problems. I don’t care if politicians work on a problem if they don’t fix the problem the first time.

The DFL hasn’t offered anything resembling a solution to MNsure. That’s why I won’t consider them serious candidates.

Cindy Harner is the chairwoman of the SD-14 DFL. Suffice it to say that she isn’t a stranger to spin. In this LTE, Ms. Harner opens her LTE by saying “Not sure your vote matters? In House District 14B there are roughly 18,000 registered voters. With over $1 million spent in the 2014 election in this district, mostly from outside interests, you can be sure your vote matters. Zach Dorholt is against this. He recently said ‘It’s irritating. I don’t want any of it. I don’t care if it supports me or is against me…people in our district they’re angry, they’re sick and tired of it.'”

Of course, Dorholt isn’t telling the truth about this. He’s bought and paid for by the DFL’s special interests. When he was in the legislature in 2013-14, Rep. Dorholt voted for the forced unionization of in-home child care providers even though they wanted nothing to do with the AFSCME union. These in-home child care providers proved they didn’t want the union by soundly rejecting unionization by a vote of 1,014-392 this past March. That’s a 72%-28% rejection.

A quick glance at Dorholt’s campaign finance report highlights the fact that Mr. Dorholt is bought and paid for by the unions:

Simply put, Mr. Dorholt’s statement that he doesn’t want special interest money is dishonest. He should be ashamed of himself for being this dishonest. Ms. Harner should be ashamed for writing this, too:

We have a slate of local candidates ready to make a change for the better. They have fresh ideas and a passion for improving things important to Central Minnesota – things like infrastructure, education funding and health care.

I won’t trust these DFL politicians with health care. They’re the idiots that ruined Minnesota’s already-functioning health care system. Why trust them to fix a system that needs a transformation? Wolgamott and Dorholt aren’t transformational people. They’re agents for the DFL’s status quo. They’ll do whatever Rep. Thissen and Sen. Bakk tell them to do.

Further, these DFL candidates won’t fight for roads and bridges funding. They’ll fight for light rail transit, which is a total waste of money.

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I won’t pretend that Zach Dorholt loves the Constitution. He doesn’t. That isn’t surprising considering the fact that he’s a progressive. Progressives, whether we’re talking about President Obama, Mrs. Clinton, Rick Nolan or Zach Dorholt, prefer limiting speech. Specifically, they prefer limiting speech that’s critical of them. This LTE highlights the DFL’s pathetic arguments for limiting political speech.

The LTE starts by saying “Are you as sick of all of the campaign ads in our mailboxes and airwaves as I am? Something needs to change. But it will only happen if we elect legislators who are prepared to take tough votes to get big money out of politics. That’s why I support Zach Dorholt. Zach supports campaign finance reform that would get dark money out of politics. He supports legislation that would make every special interests group – whether they support Democrats or Republicans — disclose to voters who is paying for the ads.”

My initial reaction is that the fascist that wrote this LTE is a whiny liberal who can’t take criticism. I get as many mailers as anyone in St. Cloud. I’ll admit that they’re annoying at times. I’ll argue, though, that I prefer getting annoyed vs. the thought of other people’s opinions not getting expressed.

IMPORTANT TAKEAWAY: I’ll fight for everyone’s right to express their opinions, even if I vehemently disagree with their opinions.

This LTE, much like Mr. Dorholt, puts a high priority on limiting free speech, not on funding the basic functions of government. What’s appalling is that Dorholt’s campaign website’s priorities page doesn’t mention his solution for fixing Minnesota’s highways. Dorholt’s priorities page specializes in talking in circles:

Minnesota needs an economy…
where businesses are competitive and innovation is encouraged.
where the permitting process is streamlined and compliance review is straightforward.
where workers are protected in and out of the workplace and receive livable wages.
where companies are rewarded for keeping jobs from going overseas.

Mr. Dorholt, how can you be for streamlining the permitting process for PolyMet, then say that we need more regulations to protect workers and mandate “livable wages”?

The DFL has an agenda. It’s an agenda of killing middle class jobs, raising taxes on everyone via the gas tax and funding the Southwest Light Rail project that does nothing to reduce congestion on Twin Cities highways. They just can’t talk about that agenda. That’s why they’re stuck talking about limiting people’s First Amendment rights and violating our constitutional rights.

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According to Zach Dorholt’s latest mailer, which is actually paid for by Dorholt’s campaign, “Zach shares our priorities.” It isn’t surprising that he’s making this claim. It’s surprising what he thinks are “our priorities.”

Listed first on Dorholt’s priorities is that he’ll “invest in our schools in Central Minnesota from pre-K to college and bring back the tuition freeze at SCSU.” Next on Dorholt’s list of priorities is to work “with both sides of the aisle to deliver on transportation funding for highways, roads and the Northstar Line.” Last but not least, Dorholt promises to “stand up to special interests in both parties trying to buy our elections by putting a stop to secret campaign contributions from lobbyists and corporations.”

Let’s look at Dorholt’s priorities. The tuition freeze might sound appealing but it’s a PR game. Tuition is frozen but the taxpayers pay for the increased cost of college. If you want to stabilize the cost of college, you have to question the expenses. The first thing that should disappear to make college less costly are things like Senior-to-Sophomore, which gives high school students college credits for classes taught frequently by high school teachers.

That’s terrible for multiple reasons. First, high school teachers aren’t qualified to teach college-level classes in STEM-related subjects. The students get cheated because they’re essentially told that they’re prepared for college after they’ve taken glorified high school classes. Next, S2S classes steal tuition revenue from universities. Top that off with universities with additional expenses but a tuition ‘freeze’.

Tell me how that math works budget-wise for the universities. Tell me how S2S helps prepare high school students for college-level classes.

Next on Dorholt’s priorities is to raise the gas tax. That isn’t what DFL legislators do. It’s who DFL legislators are. Dorholt would also vote to raise the Metro sales tax to pay for Southwest Light Rail. Mr. Dorholt, how will raising the Metro sales tax fix a single pothole in St. Cloud? Why should we raise the gas tax when Republicans already have a plan that will fix Minnesota’s roads and bridges that doesn’t require raising anyone’s taxes?

Finally, Dorholt insists that he’ll fight the evil special interests that are trying to buy our elections. The bad news for Mr. Dorholt is that he’s got a record he’ll have to defend. He’s already voted against in-home child care providers and in favor of the public employee unions, which are bigtime allies of the DFL. When it came time to choose between the people and the special interests that time, Mr. Dorholt chose the special interests.

When the Tax Bill was being debated, local businesses lobbied against the DFL’s tax increases. Mr. Dorholt voted with the DFL and against his constituents. Then he returned home and got read the riot act by his constituents. In 2014, Dorholt voted to repeal part of the tax increases he voted to create in 2013.

If you’re getting the impression that Dorholt isn’t who his mailers say he is, don’t fight that feeling. This is the only candidate in that race who does what his constituents want:

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Friday afternoon, I received a mailer that was paid for by the Alliance for a Better Minnesota Action Fund. This mailer touted Zach Dorholt because he’ll “protect a woman’s right to choose, fight back against attempts to defund Planned Parenthood, work to pass paid family leave and make childcare more affordable.”

The opening paragraph of the mailer sounds threatening, saying “Women make hundreds of decisions every day and should be able to make the most personal ones — about their health, birth control and pregnancies — without interference from their boss or from politicians.” Let’s examine that paragraph.

When was the last time a Minnesota legislator offered legislation that would invalidate Roe v. Wade? Let’s be blunt, people. That’s what it would take to outlaw “a woman’s right to choose.” Actually, that isn’t enough because Roe v. Wade is a ruling from the US Supreme Court. In other words, there isn’t a thing that state legislators can do to outlaw a woman’s right to choose.

Later, it mentions that Dorholt would fight against defunding Planned Parenthood. Since that’s never been proposed in Minnesota, who cares what Mr. Dorholt thinks about the issue? It’s irrelevant. Finally, it mentions that Dorholt will work to “make childcare more affordable.” That’s code for he’s voted to force unionization on in-home child care providers.

In other words, it means that Dorholt will fight for a woman’s right to choose, something that he has utterly no control over and that he’ll fight against anyone who wants to defund Planned Parenthood, something that nobody’s attempted to do in Minnesota. Finally, he told everyone that he voted to force unionization down in-home child care providers’ throats. That ended with a thud when in-home child care providers rejected AFSCME’s ‘offer’ to represent them by a vote of 1,014-392.

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