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Earlier this week, I published this post with a photoshopped picture of Angie Craig saying something embarrassing. A quick Google search verified that the statement was made by Ms. Craig during the 2016 campaign. The NRCC published the specific quote in this blog post. The key lines state “Jeff Erdmann thinks he knows why Craig lost. He was a volunteer for her in 2016, phone banking and going door to door. That spring, a voter asked him a question about Craig’s position on an issue that he couldn’t answer, so when Craig held a Q&A with the volunteers, he asked her if it was OK to direct voters to the website for an answer. ‘No, not really,’ Erdmann recalled her saying, ‘because we haven’t developed our website yet because we don’t want the Republicans to know where we stand, and we haven’t seen end-of-summer polling yet.'”

That isn’t all, though, that Erdmann heard. Check this out:

Later, he said, he was phone banking and asked a supervisor what message he should tailor to the rural part of the district, since the script seemed aimed at city dwellers. “Just tell them the trailer-court story, they’re not big thinkers out there,” he said he was told, referring to Craig’s childhood in a trailer home.

It’s pretty apparent that the Craig campaign doesn’t have much respect for their voters, especially their rural voters. Equally apparent is that Ms. Craig’s opinions aren’t informed by her would-be constituents but by polling. Here’s the photoshopped photo of Craig with her inopportune (but revealing) statements:

The line at the bottom of the page is the most important line:

Remember the last time Jason Lewis had to wait to determine his opinion? No, me either.

In the time of Trump, people want politicians that speak clearly and who provide solutions to important issues. Jason Lewis fits that description perfectly. After he’s re-elected, his authority will grow, which will benefit his constituents and the nation.

After she’s defeated, Angie Craig will return to her cushy office.

Saying that Angie Craig doesn’t want MN-2 voters to know what she stands for is the truth. It isn’t difficult to find out what she’s against. This statement on the Trump/GOP tax reform is a perfect example of Ms. Craig telling voters what she’s against. In the statement, Ms. Craig said “Paul Ryan finally released the tax plan that Jason Lewis has been talking up for weeks and it’s just as bad as we thought. This isn’t real tax reform. This is a giveaway to big corporations and the rich, paid for by tax increases for the middle class.”

First, Ms. Craig is relying on the Democrats’ talking points. It’s worth noting that the Democrats’ chanting points are dishonest. (Go figure, right?) As people have found out, everyone has gotten a tax cut. The middle class have gotten rather significant tax cuts. That’s in addition to many of them getting significant bonuses, significantly increased benefits from employers and lower out-of-pocket health care expenses. Other than those significant benefits to the middle class, the Democrats are right. If not for those benefits to the middle class, the middle class would’ve gotten the shaft.

In terms of health care, Craig is a bit of a radical:

Before he ditched his constituents, Keith Ellison announced that he was taking over the Democrats’ single-payer health care bill. In the above video, Ms. Craig said that Keith Ellison told her that he wanted her at the table when they figured out health care. That’s what makes this so funny:

Let’s get serious. When Craig is talking to her DFL activist allies, she knows exactly what she wants. When she’s talking with John and Jane Q. Public, she’s as transparent as Rod Rosenstein’s DOJ.

As the lit piece shows, Jason Lewis’s supporters know him to be a man who doesn’t moisten his finger to figure out where he stands on the issues. That’s why he’ll win re-election this November.

Per tradition, the DFL issued this statement after delegates endorsed Angie Craig to run against Republican incumbent Jason Lewis. The statement was the usual milquetoast boilerplate, saying “Angie Craig embodies the American Dream. She went from a mobile home park to a leader at Minnesota manufacturer St. Jude Medical. She will fight to ensure every Minnesotan has the opportunities she did by fighting for good-paying jobs, affordable healthcare for all, and real middle-class tax reform.”

All the statements in the world, though, won’t take away the major mistake that Ms. Craig made last week. Last week, Ms. Craig bragged that she wants to team up with Keith Ellison on health care. It’s worth noting that Rep. Ellison “took the reins of single-payer healthcare legislation in the House” last month. After making a major mistake on health care the last time she ran, Ms. Craig apparently didn’t learn.

I’m not the expert on CD-2 that others are but it’s difficult to believe that there are many John Kline voters that’d support a candidate that wants to implement a single-payer health care system. This snippet will hurt Ms. Craig this fall:

While I won’t predict a lop-sided victory for Jason Lewis, I can’t picture him winning by less than 6-8 points. The DFL recently has talked about health care being a major issue this fall. To the extent that it’s an issue, it won’t hurt Republicans as much as it’ll hurt the DFL.

The DFL has kept saying that Angie Craig is a top-tier candidate. For the sake of this article, let’s stipulate that that’s true. Let’s further stipulate that, for being a top-tier candidate, she isn’t too bright. In 2016, Ms. Craig told KSTP’s Tom Hauser that, if elected, she’d “fight” to expand Obamacare. From that point forward, Ms. Craig’s support dropped like a lead balloon.

In 2018, Ms. Craig has shown that she still hasn’t learned her lesson. The Washington Free Beacon is reporting that “Minnesota Democrat Angie Craig bragged during a weekend candidate forum that she has been working on a way to move healthcare forward with Rep. Keith Ellison (D., Minn.), who last month took the reins of single-payer healthcare legislation in the House.”

Why would a supposed top-tier candidate in a supposedly swing district essentially admit that she’s working with the most radical progressive in the Minnesota delegation on single-payer health care? That isn’t just foolish. That’s downright stupid:

“We are going to have to figure out how we move our healthcare system forward,” Craig said. “I’ve talked to a lot of members of Congress who have a lot of bills—I’ve talked to Keith Ellison who’s got a particular bill he just took over.”
“I just left Keith a little bit ago and I told him, ‘Let’s figure out how we move forward with healthcare.’ ‘And he said to me, ‘I want you at the table when we’re figuring this out.'”

Don’t be surprised if the NRCC highlights this in an ad this October. Ms. Craig can prepare her spin now but it won’t matter. That’s one of those things that you just can’t spin.

The latest Cook Report rated this race as a toss-up. That might be right but Jason Lewis is perfectly positioned to win. I wouldn’t want to be Angie Craig’s campaign manager.

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The media bias that Jason Lewis is running against is stifling. For instance, this MinnPost article said “Yet Lewis was on the floor of the House on March 24, they day of the scheduled vote, railing against Obamacare and urging his colleagues to do the “right thing” by dismantling it, something he’d been saying for weeks. Ultimately, Lewis was one of the last speakers to take to the House podium that day: he spoke minutes before Speaker Paul Ryan decided to pull the bill because it didn’t have enough votes to pass. That episode is emblematic of the approach that Lewis, a former pundit on right-wing talk radio, has taken to Congress in his first year on the job. Instead of tacking to the center on key issues or keeping a low profile, as some vulnerable lawmakers faced with a difficult election might, Lewis has been an outspoken advocate for conservative policy priorities like gutting the ACA, slashing taxes and undoing scores of federal regulations.”

It’s appalling that the media would think that voting against repealing the ACA is “tacking to the center.” The ACA still isn’t that popular, though some low-profile GOP improvements have made the ACA less onerous on families. As for “slashing taxes and undoing scores of federal regulations”, the US economy is doing better than at any time during the Obama administration.

It’s interesting to see the left’s explanation for how purple MN-02 is. This is a good example:

On the congressional level, former Rep. John Kline, a Republican, represented CD2 for seven terms. But the plurality of CD2 voters chose to send former Sen. Al Franken to Congress in 2014, and a 30-point majority voted to grant Sen. Amy Klobuchar a second term in 2012.

It isn’t surprising that then-Sen. Franken garnered a plurality of the votes in 2014. His opponent wasn’t a top-tier candidate. As for Sen. Klobuchar’s victory, that’s typical. Most people ignore the substance of her votes and vote for the personality.

Lewis’ belief is that being clear and unambiguous about his policy stances will position him well for the election, and that voters will reward his authenticity even if they disagree. “Sincerity goes a long way,” he said. “It’s the difference between those members that are constantly dictated by the polls, and people who just say, I came here to do something, I’m going to do it. I just think having convictions is a real asset in politics.”

The reason why American institutions have terrible favorability ratings is because people don’t trust their institutions. People that find a politician who actually believes something are thrilled. People want to find a politician who believes something and can explain why they believe that.

That’s Jason Lewis. That isn’t Angie Craig. Look at how significantly she’s changed on health care. This is from Ms. Craig’s campaign website:

We must work to repair our healthcare system, starting with immediate fixes to the Affordable Care Act (ACA), and work toward universal health coverage. It’s time to stop playing politics with people’s lives. Many families, particularly those who are self-employed as small business owners and family farmers, cannot afford the healthcare available in the individual marketplace, but Washington has done nothing to help. Congress needs to work across the aisle immediately to stabilize healthcare costs for these families.

We can do this without giving up the good things that have come from the ACA. Current law has eliminated the penalty for pre-existing conditions, ended lifetime limits, allowed young adults to remain on their parent’s insurance, and given tens of millions of Americans access to healthcare who didn’t have it before.

I wrote this post to highlight this NRCC ad:

That NRCC ad cost her the election in 2016. Just 2 years later, bold Angie Craig has morphed into timid, calculating Angie Craig. A year from now, who knows how she’ll portray herself? This is what a calculating career politician that’ll sell their soul does. This isn’t about “tacking to the center.” It’s about selling out.

This is another thing that career politicians do:

Third, we need to stop suspected terrorists on the no-fly list from purchasing firearms and reinstate a rule recently repealed by Congress that stopped some people with mental illnesses from purchasing guns.

Banning people on no-fly lists from buying guns sounds sensible — until people find out that those no-fly lists included Stephen F. Hayes, the Editor-in-Chief of the Weekly Standard, and the late Sen. Ted Kennedy. Had Ms. Craig gotten her way, law-abiding citizens would’ve had their civil rights violated because the federal government was incompetent. As for “people with mental illnesses” purchasing firearms, it’s more likely that the federal, state and local governments will miss warning signs. That’s what happened in Parkland.

Assuming that the federal or state government will promptly update their data bases is like assuming that career politicians will keep each of their campaign promises.

That’s why sincerity, honesty and consistency are cherished by voters. That’s why Jason Lewis stands a good shot at getting re-elected.

Thus far, it’s seemed like big multi-national corporations have been the only companies that have spread the wealth gained through the Trump/GOP tax cuts. Apparently, that’s coming to an end. According to this article, Minnesota companies are getting into the action.

According to the article, “Data Sales Co. said it will benefit from a cut in the corporate tax rate from 35 to 21 percent. The rate cut is part of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act passed by Republican majorities in Congress and signed in December by President Trump. ‘With the majority of our 80-plus-strong workforce here in Burnsville, I’m pleased that the benefits of tax reform will be felt at home,’ Data Sales CEO and Burnsville resident Paul Breckner said in a news release.”

Breckner praised Rep. Jason Lewis, praising him “for his consistent advocacy of tax reform and seeing it through to becoming law.” Lewis replied, saying “Critics said the business cuts ‘wouldn’t help the hardworking middle-class families that work for these businesses,’ Lewis said in a Jan. 22 message to constituents. ‘Thankfully, it’s actually the case that making American businesses more competitive is very good for our families. Across the country, employers have responded to tax reform by giving a combined total of over $1 billion in bonuses to their employees over the past month. That’s over 1 million Americans with approximately $1,000 more in their pocket today!'”

The American Action Network put together this ad thanking Congressman Lewis for voting for the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act:

Congressman Lewis is a rising star in the Republican Party. He’s principled, articulate and conservative. Congressman Lewis’s intellectual heft is impressive, too. I’d love to see him debate nonentities like Betty McCollum or Rick Nolan. Frankly, it’d be a mismatch.

The rematch between Congressman Lewis and Angie Craig, if it happens, would also be a mismatch. Lewis is already hitting her:

“It seems the Erdmann campaign is feeling the Craig hypocrisy we saw regularly last cycle as the same Democrats who claim to be working to get money out of politics seem more interested in someone who can raise money than someone to represent their values,” his campaign manager, Becky Alery, said in a statement. She added: “In 2016, the country made it clear they didn’t want Hillary and this year Minnesota will (once again) make it clear they don’t want Angie Craig.”

Angie Craig would be a good fit in Minnesota’s 4th or 5th districts because she’s exceptionally liberal. She’s a terrible fit for Minnesota’s 2nd District because she’s too liberal for the district. Lewis didn’t vote for the Schumer Shutdown. Angie Craig would’ve voted for the Schumer Shutdown.

All you need to know about the rematch between Angie Craig vs. Jason Lewis is that Ms. Craig still isn’t about fighting for all of our civil liberties. According to Ms. Craig’s issues page, Ms. Craig still thinks that the First Amendment shouldn’t apply to everyone. Specifically, Ms. Craig’s issue page said “The Supreme Court in its 2010 decision in Citizens United completely changed elections in the United States, by allowing unlimited and dark money spending. Money in politics was always a problem but now it is worse than ever before. Now special interest groups can spend unlimited amounts of untraceable money to elect people who will tip the rules in their favor once in office. The voices of the people are lost in favor of the voices of the few and the powerful. It is a big part of what is wrong in Washington. I am committed to pass laws to end Citizens United and get big money out of politics. Corporations and special interests are not people and their oversized influence on the way our government works needs to end now.”

The oath of office that members of congress take states “I, AB, do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic; that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same; that I take this obligation freely, without any mental reservation or purpose of evasion, and that I will well and faithfully discharge the duties of the office on which I am about to enter. So help me God.”

How can Ms. Craig support and defend the Constitution of the United States when she doesn’t understand the Constitution or its Bill of Rights? You can’t right laws that negate parts of the Constitution or the Bill of Rights. The only thing you can do is amend the Constitution, which require two-thirds of the House of Representatives to vote in favor of the constitutional amendment, then have two-thirds of the Senate vote in favor of the constitutional amendment, then have three-fourths of the states’ legislatures ratify the Amendment.

Last year, Craig had a major fundraising advantage. That isn’t the case this year:

2nd District: GOP incumbent Jason Lewis raised $235,000 and had about $583,000 in available cash. Lewis’s 2016 DFL challenger, business executive Angie Craig didn’t report any fundraising after announcing a new run in July and has $200,000 remaining on a personal loan from her last run.

Last time, Rep. Lewis trailed Ms. Craig in fundraising. Now he’s leading. That’s a sign that Lewis’ base has solidified and that he’ll be running from a position of strength this time.

That doesn’t mean the Twin Cities media won’t attack Rep. Lewis like they did in this video:

That being said, the attacking Twin Cities media better be prepared because Rep. Lewis knows how to fight back.

Yesterday, amidst the heartbreak from Las Vegas, 2 candidates for Congress made their candidacies official. In CD-2, Angie Craig officially announced her rematch with Rep. Jason Lewis. Jason Lewis will defeat Ms. Craig again because he has a real economic plan that will benefit Minnesotans.

For instance, Ms. Craig’s issue page talks about infrastructure. It says “Congress must invest in infrastructure revitalization by rebuilding our roads, highways, and bridges and increasing access to high-speed internet – especially in rural areas. Not only will this create good-paying construction jobs in the short-term, experience has shown that public infrastructure investment stimulates private sector jobs growth.”

Notice that it doesn’t mention pipelines. That’s odd considering the fact that Flint Hills Resources is one of the district’s bigger employers. If she’s going to represent the entire district, shouldn’t she represent the major employers in the district?

Rather than making the announcement in person, Craig’s announcement came in the form of a statement. The statement said “I’m proud to launch my campaign today with the voices and support of so many great Minnesota leaders. I’m running for Congress to build a Minnesota for all of us. I want to work so that every member of every family is rewarded for their hard work with an outstanding education, the training or re-training for a good job, and a fair shot at a better life. Washington needs leaders that work for all of us here in Minnesota and with the broad support we’ve already built, I know I can be that leader for the Second District.”

Again, how can you build a Minnesota for all of us if you’re ignoring a major employer’s needs?

Lewis for Congress spokesman Stephen Bradford spoke about his accomplishments:

Rep. Lewis was proud to receive the endorsement that counted in 2016, the endorsement of the voters, and is grateful for continued support from families, businesses, and unions across the 2nd District. He’ll keep working hard on issues that matter to people at home, like reforming health care, lowering taxes, and his successful amendments to improve career and technical education.

There’s no question about whether Rep. Lewis is representing his district. Education is a big issue in CD-2 because Lewis’s predecessor, John Kline, was the chairman of the House education committee. Last time around, Lewis had to defend some things he said as a radio talk show host. That’s been litigated already so that’s ancient history. This time, Rep. Lewis gets to defend his policies and accomplishments.

Expect this seat to stay in Republicans’ hands. In southern Minnesota, Carla Nelson announced her bid to replace Tim Walz in an unusual way:

State Senator Carla Nelson issued the following statement regarding the announcement of her candidacy for Minnesota’s 1st District congressional election.

While I have decided to run for Congress, today is not a day for campaigning. This is a solemn day for our nation, a time when we need to come together and pray for the victims of Las Vegas, their families and all who have been affected by this tragedy. I look forward to the days and weeks to come as my campaign gears up, but for now I hope everyone will continue to keep the victims, their families, and the first responders in their thoughts and prayers.

Expect the Republicans to flip this district from blue to red.

Hearing Angie Craig and Rebecca Otto talked about education should be considered cruel and unusual punishment. First, I have to talk about a statement Ms. Craig made during the event. She said “I’m running for Congress in 2018 and I’m coming back to claim our seat.”

Though she wants to focus on education, Ms. Craig apparently isn’t interested in history. It’s been quite some time since a Democrat represented MN-2 in Congress. According to Wikipedia’s history of CD-2, Republicans have held the seat 66 of the last 74 years. That’s a pretty red district. But I digress.

During her presentation, State Auditor Rebecca Otto sounded like a typical far left liberal, saying “A lot of the politics that end up getting passed by the politics of greed end up running over our interests and the common good. The people’s interest and our values, 2018 will really be defined by the politics of greed versus the politics of people and the common good. The politics of greed say all taxes are bad and need to be slashed. That all regulation is bad and must be repealed. That all government workers are bad and must be privatized – that’s our roads, our airports and our schools. As your governor, no public funds are going to private schools.”

Translation: I’m owned by Education Minnesota. The achievement gap will continue or get worse.

I’d describe Ms. Otto’s messaging as scorched earth messaging. There isn’t a hint of nuance to it. The implied message behind Ms. Otto’s words is simple: Republicans are evil. They only look out for themselves. Initially, I thought that this was her messaging to be the DFL gubernatorial candidate. I’m not certain that’s the case anymore. I think there’s a possibility that that’s just who she is as a candidate.

If Republicans get to run against Ms. Otto, it’ll be a gift. She’s an environmental extremist who voted against mining leases, then tried fundraising off of that vote. She’s suing the legislature for limiting the State Auditor’s responsibilities. That lawsuit is costing taxpayers hundreds of thousands of dollars. What’s worse is that she’s going to lose that case.

Finally, she’s a Metrocrat that hates mining. Considering the fact that Donald Trump thumped HRC on the Iron Range last year, that’s a significant gift to the Republican candidate.

Minnesota is one of several states in the nation leading in education with one of the worst achievement gaps in the nation. As Alpha News reported in 2016, Minnesota led the nation with the highest achievement gap when it came to science scores between white and black eighth grade students.

Ms. Otto needs to work on her presentation skills:

That’s brutal. She won’t get another chance to make a first impression with that audience.

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