Watching the Twitter traffic from the DFL convention in Duluth, one thing is abundantly clear: the DFL isn’t even close to being united heading into the primary campaign. That, by itself, will be a tough fight squandering lots of the candidates’ money.

Once they’re into the primary campaign, Speaker Kelliher, Susan Gertner, Mark Dayton and Matt Entenza will work hard to out-liberal the other. Here’s a picture of the conversation:

Speaker Kelliher, aka MAK: I’ll keep my promise to John Marty & get single-payer passed if elected.

Sen. Dayton: I’ll raise taxes on the rich if elected. (I’ll raise them fast, too.)

Matt Entenza: I’ll spend like crazy. (After all, he’s always talking about how we aren’t “investing enough” in Minnesota.)

Susan Gaertner, as far as I can tell, doesn’t have a message or a reason for being in the race unless she’s running for Lt. Gov.

Here’s a sampling of some of the discordant tweets:

An upset Rybak delegate just came up to me and said, “Mark my words. Governor Tom Emmer.”

When Noah Kunin tweeted that MAK had been endorsed, Dusty Trice replied “It doesn’t really energize the crowd, does it? They should go with a scorpion drop next time.”

Tom Scheck reported that Tom “Rukavina says he’s disappointed Kelliher dropped Lit with him in it”, referring to a lit piece distributed to the conventioneers by MAK organizers immediately after Rep. Rukavina endorsed MAK during his speech announcing he was dropping out.

Javier Morillo, the president of SEIU Local 26, said that “Rybak has more elected delegates. Supers hijacking convention.” Earlier, in responding to a PIM report that Rep. Rukavina was going to support MAK, Morillo said that the “endorsement doesn’t belong to legislature, belongs to the people.” He then said that “this endorsement does not belong to deals. It belongs to the grassroots”.

MzKirkpatrick reported that “Dayton folks remind all DFL candidate folks that they are selecting second runnerup so don’t waste time.”

To be fair, it wasn’t all doom and gloom, as these Tweets prove:


Favorite moment yet: In Q&A, Ole Saviour recommends Democrats change their mascot from a donkey to a unicorn.

christruscott: “Wasn’t Jesus a socialist? He shared. He kicked the bankers out of the temple, didn’t he?” Tom Rukavina.

MAK will have a tough time connecting with voters after thanking “John Marty for keeping health care in the forefront” before saying that she’s “looking forward to making the MN Health Plan a reality.”

Promising enactment of a single-payer health care plan is a political loser. While it’s obvious that MAK said this to win the endorsement, bloggers like myself will remind voters that she made this statement. My hope for MAK is that the albatross she put around her neck doesn’t cause permanent damage to her neck.

The bigger point to all this is that, while the DFL candidates try to outliberal each other while vying for their special interests’ hearts and minds, the GOP candidate will talk with Minnesotans about his vision for making Minnesota a prosperous state once again.

This won’t help the DFL this fall. They’ll devote most of their time to talking with their special interest allies. Meanwhile, the GOP candidate will be focusing his entire attention to speaking with mainstreet Minnesotans. That image won’t be lost on Minnesotans because it’s the image national Democrats started projecting a year ago.

Couple that with the unions’ discontent with AG Lori Swanson for her unionbusting activities and you have the potential for widespread discord within the DFL. That’s the last thing the DFL can afford going into a tough election year.

Just as important as the discord at the DFL convention is the DFL’s message. Like the American people, Minnesotans don’t want tax increases and ‘investments’ to stimuluate the economy. That’s the DFL’s message. Spend. Tax. Spend some more. The MNGOP’s reply is simple: Live within your means, start setting sensible priorities and start saying no to the special interest parasites.

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2 Responses to “DFL Discord Displayed in Duluth”

  • walter hanson says:


    I think the biggest problem that MAK is how the House has been run so poorly the last four years.

    After all they couldn’t work out a formal budget with the exception of passing a large tax increase at the last minute (and Democrats like to talk about how Pawlenty doesn’t negoiate).

    I’m sure there are beter examples. I think this will cause the Democrats to go to Dayton especially since he has promised to self-fiance again.

    Walter Hanson
    Minneapolis, MN

  • Leo Pusateri says:

    Great piece, Gary–It’s definitely the GOP’s election to lose this November. There should be no excuse why GOP can’t turn both houses and the Governorship at the same time.

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