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MN-08: Some healthy DFL competition

by Dan Burns on June 12, 2017

bwcaTwo DFL challenges to Rep. Rick Nolan (D-MN) are being considered, by Sue Hakes and Leah Phifer.

Sue Hakes, who previously served as Cook County Commissioner and Mayor of Grand Marais, will test the field as Nolan considers his future.
“When I think about Minnesota’s Eighth District, I think people first,” Hakes said in a press release. “I want to fight the current administration’s budgetary goals which chip away at — or gut entirely — the very institutions that make rural life possible and the amenities that make rural America a desirable place to live”.
(Minnesota Brown)

So, as I watched politicians and pundits race to understand us after the 2016 election, I couldn’t help but laugh. If they really wanted to understand us, to help us, they would stop trying to fit us into neat little narratives. My family and friends are scattered from Isanti to International Falls. In MN CD08, we’re hard-working, opinionated, and unpredictable. If you want to understand us, I thought, start by acknowledging that no two towns, counties or people in this large district are the same. So when I began to think about my role in future of this district, I knew where I had to start.
On June 16th, 2017, I will be setting out on a 80 day listening tour, to take the pulse of our varied district. Let’s talk about what makes us so unique, what we have in common and where we can start to re-build the politics that govern us, but don’t define us. Please check out my event calendar or show me around your corner of our great district. Share your story, share your thoughts, share your recommendations for the best pasties and pastries in your town! Wherever you lie on the political spectrum, let’s talk about how we move our district into the future together.
(Around the 8th in 80 days)

Phifer’s website has nothing at this time about her policy positions. I couldn’t find Hakes’s press release online; here’s her Facebook page if you want to peruse that for indicators. I will certainly withhold judgment until I know a lot more about where these candidates’ heads are at on the issues of the day.
Except for sulfide mining, Rep. Nolan has been a strong progressive in Congress. I would need to see a very impressive candidate, starting with great, strong, downright relentless opposition to such mining in the district, to even think of voting for anyone else in a primary.

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