Partisanship Should End with the Election

Around 42,000 residents live in House District 58B. Each of those residents has a unique view of how things should be. Some think we should invest in public schools, while others think private school competition is the key. Some think there should be a government supported option for affordable health care, others think government should have no part in health care. My point is, there is no situation in which someone will see all of their views come to fruition, because there are just too many diverse views.

Holding our leaders accountable for their actions is different than placing blame. Accountability is a necessary part of a functioning democracy. Placing blame has our leaders engaging in behaviors that wouldn’t be acceptable in a kindergarten classroom and truly serve no one. I believe that once the election has been held, and voters have cast their ballots, partisanship should stop. The people have spoken, the starting platform has been chosen, and it becomes time for all legislators to use sensible judgment and the knowledge of their communities to help shape law by working with colleagues to address the needs of Minnesotans. The job of the majority party is to set the direction, because it is the direction that the majority of voters believe is best. However, the role of the legislator is not to pursue the goals of the party. The job of ALL legislators is to be sure that those who are not represented by the majority have their views considered and concerns addressed in the development of a comprehensive solution. Will you like everything your legislators vote for? Most likely, no. Will you agree with all the decision your legislator makes? Probably not. What is critically important is that everyone has an opportunity to voice their concerns and know that their legislators are listening. In my opinion, every bill should come to the floor with bi-partisan support, because that means the work was put in to ensure it is a balanced solution. And if we can get balanced solutions that aren’t laced with personal agendas and special interests, solutions that don’t pit one group of Minnesotans against another, that’s when we will start to see real, lasting progress.

The DFL is a political party. The DFL platform is a collection of values and ideas about how we can achieve the best possible outcomes for Minnesotans. I am not the DFL. I do not “represent” the DFL. The DFL chose to endorse me as a candidate because many of my views align with the DFL platform. I accepted the endorsement with a promise to represent my community. If I win the 58B seat in the MN House, my starting ground will be those ideas that are part of the DFL platform, because that is what the majority of 58B constituents voted for when they voted for me. My endorsement by the DFL does not and will not limit my ability to work with others who have differing ideas about how we achieve the best possible outcomes for Minnesotans. My constituents who have differing views deserve to be heard. Incorporating different views can lead to a more comprehensive solution to whatever issue we are facing and I look forward to demonstrating that bi-partisan collaboration is the only secure path forward.