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endorsements

inside-baseballEnough time has gone by since the 2016 Democratic Primary that we can now, I think, separate the unreachable from the merely burned Democrats. Hillary supporters are finally admitting that their candidate may have lost (even though she actually did win the popular vote) and Bernie supporters have stopped calling foul on the entire election process.
 
Right?
 
First, from me, full disclosure: I liked both candidates a lot. I decided, as I generally do, to pick the one that I thought would win the nomination, if possible, to support as soon as I was pretty certain of that.
 
Pursuant to this, as many of you who read my blog know, I developed a model for predicting primary and caucus outcomes. My model out performed everyone else’s, including the famous FiveThirthEight. I got a few “wrong” but actually got them more right by predicting the percentage of vote split between Hillary and Bernie very closely, but since the vote was essentially 50-50, which one won was a tossup, and in a couple of races, my toss went the wrong way. Still, my numbers were closer than everyone else’s.
 
Realizing this was happening I felt comfortable supporting Hillary Clinton at one point, though given the vitriol building around the primary, within the party, I kept my mouth shut for about an extra 10 days.
 
But, even as an eventual Hillary Supporter, I still liked Bernie, and also, I understood how some of the Bernie supporters felt about the process.

 

Some of them were the outsiders, and many didn’t know very much about how it all works. There was a lot of negativity that was really based on not understanding the system, and from believing some really stupid lies. For example, the whole coin toss thing from Iowa.

 
In Minnesota, I witnessed Sanders supporters finish a caucus with one or two fewer delegates than they could have had because they simply did not understand how delegates were counted (in a walking caucus). They had piles of time, they kept calling for “democracy” and stuff, Hillary supporters were telling them, “reorganize that group, and that group, you’ll get more delegates” but they didn’t listen.

 
So yes, Bernie lost fair and square, but at the same time, many Bernie supporters left the process with significant butt-hurt, and in my expert opinion (yes, I’m an expert on political butt-hurt) some of those bad feelings were self inflicted or simply not legit, while some of those bad feelings were very valid.
 
One of the complaints that was valid was in the area of endorsements. You may remember that Clinton got way more of the usual endorsements than Sanders. Do you also remember that these endorsements came way early in the process? Not all, but at least a few of them, were given to Clinton weeks before they were given to any candidate during the 2008 primary.
 
Sanders supporters were justifiably upset at that. There should be a respectful amount of time before deciding which candidate should get an endorsement. The accusation made by Bernie supporters was that the Democratic Party was playing inside politics.
 
As a Democrat and a Hillary supporter, I have to agree with that. And, as a Democrat and a person who wants to turn our state Blue, I am concerned that the party is doing the same thing again.
 
Collin Peterson, RT Rybak, and David Wellstone have already endorsed their candidate for Minnesota Governor, just now, so early in the process that we are not even fully sure who is running. They Waltzed into the race and endorsed Congressman Walz way too early. As far as I know, these are the only endorsements of anybody in this race. There is no way that this isn’t some sort of inside politics.
 
Look, Walz would be a great governor (but see below) and I like these three guys. But we had a race with several women being mentioned, some dude comes along, and three dudes jump on his bandwagon. OK, maybe this wasn’t a sexist-jerk act, but it certainly was a knee-jerk act.
 
These endorsements won’t mean anything. Endorsements are only marginally important, somewhere just below lawn signs in their campaign related oomph. But, the early insider endorsements do have an effect. They make people feel like they are being left out of the process.
 
In other words, the total negative impact of early insider baseball endorsements on the process will cause more DFL votes to go away than the total positive impact of having particular endorsements would have on a given candidate’s standing. In behavioral biology and game theory, we call this a spiteful act.
 
Rybak, Wellstone, and Peterson can’t take back their endorsements, but it would sure be nice if everyone else could show some restraint.

 
Below: I’ll add this thought. A seated Democratic member of Congress who leaves his seat to run for something else, and thus gives that seat to the Republicans, in a year like this, is a bone head. Sorry, it is true. If Walz gives his sea to the Republicans next election, and the US House is Republican by one vote, then he will have to … I don’t know what. But something.
 
Comment below fold.
 
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DSCN6270The newest candidate for Hennepin Sheriff is Eddie Frizell, a Deputy Chief of the Patrol Bureau with the City of Minneapolis Police Department with 21 years of experience. He is also a Colonel in the National Guard with tours in Iraq and Kuwait. Frizell is challenging the current Sheriff Rick Stanek.

 

Just yesterday, Eddie Frizell was endorsed by the Hennepin County DFL after months of consideration. During the endorsement process, Frizell faced tough questions. One person asked Frizell, how would he ensure more probable cause and less profiling. The answer was that when officers better reflect the community, they make better decisions on probable cause. The vote of support was unanimous and enthusiastic.

 

Impressively, Hennepin County Sheriff’s Deputies Association have also endorsed Frizell saying:

 

“It is clear to us that you understand creating a livable, safer community and that this requires a multi-faceted approach involving partnerships at all levels of the community and government. As a result, the Hennepin County Sheriff’s Deputies Association supports your candidacy for Sheriff of Hennepin County!”

 

As a writer, I wanted to contrast the endorsements of both candidates for Sheriff. However I ran into difficulties on the Stanek endorsements.
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The Graves campaign received an endorsement from the editorial board of Minnesota’s ECM newspapers this week:

After spending an hour interviewing Bachmann and Graves, it’s our view that Graves’ highly focused business and economic acumen would better serve the district during a time when innovative approaches to job creation are needed.

ECM Publishing runs local newspapers all around Minnesota. (And this year it also acquired the Sun newspaper chain operating in the St. Croix Valley.) The editorial notes that Bachmann met with the ECM editorial board, attempting to convince them that she was the best choice to represent the people of the Sixth District.

She failed in that attempt. The board also met with Graves and decided that he’s the better choice. They cited Graves’ business acumen and understanding of local economic issues and contrasted that with Bachmann’s focus:

…(Bachmann has) drawn sharp GOP rebukes on Capitol Hill for a distasteful witch-hunt against Muslims in the U.S. government…

…(Ability) to compromise at a higher level has been a problem for Bachmann throughout her third term. If re-elected, she will foster a continued period of gridlock…

…Additionally, we’re not convinced Rep. Bachmann has finished her quest for a higher political calling.

Her Tea Party ties are stronger than ever, she remains a regular on the national conservative talk-show circuit and she still has a reputation for inflammatory, divisive rhetoric. Rep. Bachmann’s political passion is admirable and her ability to connect with constituents is impressive, but more often than not, she emphasizes self-propulsion in a narrow political arena rather than bipartisan solutions.

All true, and the correct way to understand Bachmann’s terms in office. But the newspaper chain’s endorsement of Graves is not a hatchet job on Bachmann’s record in office.
(CONTINUED)  
Don’t get me wrong, Bachmann’s record on representing the Sixth merits a hatchet job. But that’s not what ECM is doing here.

The ECM editorial actually credits Bachmann with “punching through legislation to secure funding for the St. Croix River crossing near Stillwater, a new veterans’ clinic in Ramsey and funding that will help the St. Cloud Airport.” It’s wrong to credit Bachmann with achievements that represent liberal deficit spending to improve life in the district.

It’s wrong because Bachmann presents herself as deeply conservative. Thus any big government deficit spending “achievements” represent deception of the voters on her part.

Throughout her career Bachmann has been telling her supporters that Americans are “taxed enough already,” that liberal deficit spending is the enemy, that earmarks are wrong and she wouldn’t seek them.

Bachmann claims to be a principle conservative with “a titanium spine” and it’s wrong for media to give her gold stars for discarding alleged core principles about the role of government in the economy. ECM should have at least called attention to the deception.

It’s true that Bachmann is emphasizing her deficit spending “achievements” in an election year. It’s a near-certainty that she will return to her default position if re-elected, and that her ideological refusal to deliver practical results will continue to cost her constituents money, jobs, even their homes.  

The “gridlock” resulting in inaction on pressing problems is in Bachmann’s personal political interest. Conservatives reward Bachmann for her regular refusal to use her office to address serious problems in the district. (Doing so  would represent “the need for big government,” “a threat to liberty,” “vindication of liberalism.”)

Bachmann can’t perform responsibly for district’s economy and at the same time please national Tea Party, small-government conservatives, and conservative media. She has to please those “outside her district” supporters because that’s where her now-legendary fundraising capability comes from.

Thus the interests of the families in her district have never been a priority for Michele Bachmann. She’s always put her careerism and national ambitions first.

So ECM was right to endorse Graves. The Sixth District–racked by a depressed economy, home foreclosures and unemployment throughout all Bachmann’s terms in office–needs a congressional representative who is not a narcissist.

LINK: (Hat tip to “isabel” in Daily Kos election diaries, who spotted the appearance of the Graves endorsement in the Forest Lake Times.)
http://forestlaketimes.com/201…

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Former President Bill Clinton Endorses Tarryl Clark

by Owen_Truesdell on July 27, 2012 · 0 comments

Citing Clark’s Commitment to Serving her Community, President Clinton backs Clark as the DFL Candidate who can win in November

Full disclosure: I am a staffer with Tarryl Clark for Congress

(Duluth, MN) – Today, former President Bill Clinton announced his endorsement of Tarryl Clark in her campaign for Minnesota’s 8th Congressional District.

“I am proud to support Tarryl Clark for Congress,” said President Clinton. “From her work with the Children’s Defense Fund and Legal Services’ Senior Law Project, to her commitment to coalition building while leading the state’s Community Action Partnership, Tarryl’s focus for almost 25 years has been improving Minnesota. I am confident she will bring the common sense solutions we need to Washington,” the President added.

The former president’s endorsement is particularly significant given that Tarryl Clark is one of three candidates running in the DFL primary election on August 14th. Additionally, President Clinton chose to endorse Clark ahead of his Aug. 4th, trip to Minnesota when he will be the keynote speaker at the DFL’s Humphrey-Mondale Dinner.

“I am immensely proud to have President Clinton’s endorsement. His record of creating jobs for millions of Americans and fighting relentlessly for America’s middle class is unparalleled,” said Clark. “As an advocate for the middle class, seniors, and our children during his presidency, his leadership was truly inspiring.”

The former president headlines a growing number of local, state and national endorsers who believe that Clark is the best candidate to take on Congressman Cravaack in November.

Tarryl Clark continues to campaign throughout Minnesota’s 8th Congressional District to unseat Freshman Tea Party Congressman Chip Cravaack. Tarryl was born in Norfolk, VA while her dad served in the U.S. Navy. She and her husband Doug raised their two sons in central Minnesota. Tarryl has worked and volunteered throughout central and northeastern Minnesota over the last 24 years including as a high school youth minister, founding director of central MN Habitat for Humanity, nonprofit senior citizen attorney, executive director of MN’s Community Action Partnership, legislative leader, and most recently as national co-chair of the Jobs21! Campaign for the BlueGreen Alliance which brought her to Duluth in early 2011.

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Sertich Endorses Anderson

by bradgangnon on May 4, 2012 · 1 comment

Congressional candidate Jeff Anderson announced this morning that former Minnesota House Majority Leader and fellow 4th Generation Iron Ranger Tony Sertich signed on in support of his campaign to unseat freshman Republican Chip Cravaack.

Jeff Anderson on the endorsement:

“It is truly an honor to have Tony Sertich’s endorsement. Tony is not only a leader on the Iron Range but served in our State Legislature as Majority Leader for four years. Tony knows the consequences of this race for our region, Minnesota and our nation and how important it is that we take back the 8th so I am honored to have him standing in our corner. Our campaign is about building the next generation of Northern Minnesota Prosperity. This prosperity includes our children attending the best schools, growing good jobs and green jobs in an increasingly diversified economy, and making sure our senior citizens have the care and help they need to live in dignity. We will achieve this agenda in partnership with Tony.”

Former State Representative and Majority Leader Sertich on the endorsement:

“Jeff Anderson has been my friend for over a decade. He was raised on the Iron Range, was elected to serve one of the largest cities in Minnesota, and proudly served our country in the military. Jeff has focused his campaign on supporting good jobs, education for our children, and standing up for our seniors. That is why I caucused for him this year. Jeff has both a business and service background. He knows our region and the opportunities and challenges we face. I am happy to endorse my friend and fellow Ranger Jeff Anderson to represent us in Congress.”


Anderson adds former Majority Leader Sertich’s endorsement to his growing list of support across the district including, State Senator Roger Reinert of Duluth, State Representatives Tom Rukavina of Pike Twp. Carly Melin of Hibbing, Tom Huntley of Duluth and David Dill of Crane Lake, former State Senators Jerry Janezich of Chisholm and Ron Dicklich of Pengilly, Mayors Don Ness of Duluth, Roger Skraba of Ely, Randy Bolen of Two Harbors and Bruce Ahlgren of Cloquet, Saint Louis County Commissioner Frank Jewell of Duluth, former St. Louis County Commissioner & DFL Party executive director Gary Cerkvenik of Britt, Duluth City Councilors Dan Hartman, Patrick Boyle, Emily Larson and Jennifer Julsrud, former Duluth City Councilors Tony Cuneo and Jackie Halberg, Virginia School Board Member Kim Stokes of Britt, the Stonewall DFL, the International Association of Fire Fighters, the International Brotherhood of Boilermakers and the United Transportation Union Alumni Association – Northeastern MN.
I am a board member of the Stonewall DFL which endorsed Anderson in December.

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Congressional candidate Jeff Anderson announced this morning that State Representatives David Dill (DFL- Crane Lake) and Tom Huntley (DFL-Duluth) have signed on in support of his campaign to unseat freshman Republican Chip Cravaack.

Jeff Anderson on the endorsements:

It is truly an honor to have these two leaders supporting me in this race to unseat Rep. Cravaack. They both know this district so well, and they know the type of leader it is going to take to not only take back this seat in November, but to also provide the sort of leadership that this district desperately needs. As I travel across the district, the message I hear is the same. We need a representative who understands the challenges and opportunities we all face, and a leader who is willing to put in the work necessary to get us to where we all want to be. I am honored that Representatives Dill and Huntley have endorsed me as the best candidate for
the job.

State Representative Dill on the endorsement:
I’m confident that Jeff Anderson is going to promote the things we hold dearest in Northeastern Minnesota: the right to a good job for our people; the right to raise our families in a clean environment; and the right to hunt and fish and recreate. Jeff Anderson will fight for mining, tourism, and timber jobs. I’m
proud to support my friend and neighbor, Jeff Anderson, and endorse him for US Congress.

State Representative Huntley on the endorsement:
We need a strong local voice to stand up for us in Washington. I was impressed with Jeff’s work on
the Duluth City Council. He knows the issues that affect Northern Minnesota. Jeff is a part of the next generation of leadership that will serve us well for years to come. He truly is one of us, for us.

Anderson adds these endorsements to his growing list of support across the district including, State Senator Roger Reinert of Duluth, State Representatives Tom Rukavina of Pike Twp. and Carly Melin of Hibbing, former State Senators Jerry Janezich of Chisholm and Ron Dicklich of Pengilly, Mayors Don Ness of Duluth, Roger Skraba of Ely, Randy Bolen of Two Harbors and Bruce Ahlgren of Cloquet, Saint Louis County Commissioner Frank Jewell of Duluth, former St. Louis County Commissioner Gary Cerkvenik of Britt, Duluth City Councilors Dan Hartman, Patrick Boyle, Emily Larson and Jennifer Julsrud, former Duluth City Councilors Tony Cuneo and Jackie Hallburg, Virginia School Board Member Kim Stokes of Britt, the Stonewall DFL, the International Association of Fire Fighters, the International Brotherhood of Boilermakers and the United Transportation Union Alumni Association – Northeastern Minnesota.

________

I am a member of the Stonewall DFL Board.

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Congressional candidate Jeff Anderson announced this morning that the members and officers of the United Transportation Union (UTU) Alumni Association has unanimously endorsed his candidacy for Congress in Minnesota’s Eighth Congressional District.

The UTU Alumni Association consists of United Transportation Union former officers and lifetime members from various locals across Northeastern Minnesota including Locals 1292, 1175 and 1067.  The UTU locals represent railroad and aircraft workers across the region.

UTU Alumni Association – Northeastern Minnesota President Paul Fish stated:

We have chosen to support your candidacy for Congress because you have proven time and again that you stand with labor and working families.  We need new homegrown leadership to fight for our region and workers interests for the long haul.  Most importantly you understand the 21st Century opportunities and challenges our region and workers face.  

Even though Congressman Cravaack is Vice Chair of the Sub-committee on Aviation it is clear he has no vision for the future of transportation or our region. Your plan to connect Northeastern Minnesota to larger markets will not only benefit us immediately, but will improve our region far into the future.  As president of the Duluth City Council, you led the effort for Duluth’s support of the Northern Lights Express.  You have been a leader in Duluth for constituents and we are confident you will be the same strong leader for our region in Washington D.C.

Jeff Anderson responded:

I am honored to receive the endorsement of the UTU Alumni Association.  These are the men and women who have built and worked the pathways that connect our region, country and world.  They know that we need a 21st Century leader to drive our region and America forward.

Anderson adds these endorsements to his growing list of support across the district including, State Senator Roger Reinert of Duluth, State Representatives Tom Rukavina of Pike Twp. and Carly Melin of Hibbing, former State Senators Jerry Janezich of Chisholm and Ron Dicklich of Pengilly, Mayors Don Ness of Duluth, Roger Skraba of Ely, Randy Bolen of Two Harbors and Bruce Ahlgren of Cloquet, Saint Louis County Commissioner Frank Jewell of Duluth, former St. Louis County Commissioner Gary Cerkvenik of Britt, Duluth City Councilors Dan Hartman, Patrick Boyle, Emily Larson and Jennifer Julsrud, former Duluth City Councilor Tony Cuneo, Virginia School Board Member Kim Stokes of Britt, the International Association of Fire Fighters and the International Brotherhood of Boilermakers.

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Jeff Anderson was endorsed by the Stonewall DFL; I am a member of the Stonewall DFL Board.

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The Frasers Endorse Sund

by bradgangnon on April 14, 2012 · 0 comments

Sharon Sund, congressional candidate for the third district, has received the endorsement of longtime DFL leaders former Congressman Don Fraser and the Hon. Arvonne Fraser, the former US Ambassador to the United Nations Commission on the Status of Women.  

The Frasers expressed admiration for Sharon’s dedication working for change for the better in the U.S., particularly her leadership on the Affordable Care Act.  Sund led grassroots delegations to various congressional offices to advocate for health care reform. Sund has advocated at the local, state and national levels on issues of healthcare, affordable housing, and education.

“I am greatly honored to receive the support from the Frasers,” Sund said. “Their collective experience and knowledge of the key issues facing America will help me defeat Erik Paulsen in the fall.”

 
I am an adviser on the Sund Campaign

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Why I Support Sharon Sund

by bradgangnon on March 27, 2012 · 0 comments

A few weeks ago, Gavin Sullivan suggested bloggers and politicos need to explain the criteria by which they endorse or support candidates.  Here is my process.

First, does the candidate support a woman’s right to choose?  I support Sharon Sund because she supports a woman’s right to choose.  Brian Barnes also supports a woman’s right to choose.  So this is not a very useful criterion in this race, but it is where I begin with supporting or endorsing candidates.  

Second, where does the candidate stand on LGBTQ Issues?  I serve as a director of Stonewall DFL; I met both Sharon Sund and Brian Barnes at the candidate screening last December.  Sharon Sund and Brian Barnes both oppose the Marriage Discrimination Amendment and both spoke eloquently about a variety of issues.  Barnes stated he would support compelling military chaplains to perform marriages on base in states where marriage was legal.  

However, something magical happened during Sharon’s screening.  She stopped speaking to us as a candidate and began speaking to us, as people, from her heart.  Sharon told the story from the “It Gets Better” video, with one striking difference.  She talked about her fear that a lesbian family member may not have the family support she had in combating racism.  

Sharon Sund won my support in telling that story.  It is a simple moment where I felt connected to the candidate as a person.  

I liked Sharon’s background as a scientist and her past work in “green” technology.  I liked her work with MoveOn, and her activism experience.  

Barnes’ background as a merchant marine and as a marketing executive did not resonate with me; I respect both but neither compels me to support a candidate.  

As I got to know Sharon better, I came to believe she was the candidate who can make Erik Paulsen squirm.  She is the candidate who can offer a true progressive challenge to Paulsen’s conservative voting record.  

Sharon has been sexually harassed, but she is not bitter.  

Sharon received an excellent education, in part,  because money had been set aside to help minorities achieve.  

Sharon has owned a small business for years.  

Sharon supports medicare for all.  She believes in a national health care model that serves every person without regard to work or ability.  I had never had a conversation with a candidate before about how important Medicare is for members of the special needs community.  Sharon won my support again when she educated me on the Medicare.

And, Sharon won my support because she is an African-American woman.  Approximately 5.5% of the members of the House and Senate are women of color.  Somewhere between 27% and 33% of the US Population are women of color.  0% of Minnesota’s Congressional delegation are women of color.  I want to see that change.  

These are several of the key reasons I support Sharon Sund in the 3rd Congressional District.  
I previously served as Sharon’s campaign manager and am a senior adviser to the campaign.

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Junk Yard Dems & 48’s endorsees

by JeffStrate on March 26, 2012 · 0 comments

DFL Senate District 48, March 24th Convention video with the Junk Yard Democrats watching and reacting to Right Wing World Television.  Plus DFL SD 48’s Senate and House endorsements.  Eden Prairie and Minnetonka rock!

(direct link to YouTube)  

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