Category Archives: Elections/Caucuses/Conventions

My 3 Political Desires 2020

I am convinced there are three political objectives we must correct by 2020.  Do I believe we can do any of this? No.  But I still want to, who is interested in supporting my PAC?

1) Nationally, end gerrymandering of political districts and require bipartisan or multipartisan state judicial redistricting boards nominated by all stakeholders.  Force those members to base the district on population and convenience of meeting.  By convenience I mean if possible, make it convenient for people to attend meetings more easily.  It isn’t convenient for a person in the 1st district living in Luverne to drive 250 miles one way for a monthly meeting in Rochester.  And it isn’t convenient for either a person in in the 7th district living in Montevideo or a person living in Thief River Falls to drive to Detroit Lakes for a meeting.  Districts should be more square!

2) Eliminate the Electoral College and elect the President by popular vote, the same way we elect every other politician.  The person who gets the most votes is the winner.  In California, a Republican’s presidential vote does not count toward the presidential election, and in Kansas, a Democrat’s vote does not count.  Every vote should count!

3) Stop PACs from running political ads on public airwaves and make politicians appear in every ad via picture or video for their campaign.  If a campaign wants to attack another candidate, make the opposing candidate do it him or herself.  Also, make it illegal for a candidate to use the image of another candidate in their ads.  Let’s make people earn a vote!

In summary, square districts, every vote counts, and earn votes. Now I just need a catchy PAC name.

The Dan Griffith campaign for Minnesota Supreme Court should scare independents and Democrats.

It is interesting how many views I’ve had of the post I wrote on the Minnesota Supreme Court primary.  I feel like most of the people reading it must be Dan Griffith supporters since his supporters keep commenting.  Regardless of their comments, my view has not changed.

This is Dan Griffith’s third attempt at election for judge.  This year he is challenging Justice Gildea for Supreme Court.  In 2008 and in 2010 Griffith ran for the Minnesota Court of Appeals.  He is becoming a perennial candidate, and a candidate common-sense voters need to avoid.

Despite what he claims, there are two important facts for indpendents and Democrats to consider.  First, he was endorsed by the Republican Party and the Constitution Party, not the DFL Party.  Second, according to an outspoken TEA Partier and a claimed “Patriot and true American” Dan Griffith has “affirmed his commitment to the positions, Values and Principles consistent with those of WE THE PEOPLE of the American TEA Party Movement!”

That should immediately scare away people who believe in Democratic Party principles or people who believe everybody should be treated equally and with respect – liberty and justice FOR ALL.

Dan is defending himself with empty explanations.  He is trying to play both sides.  He is far enough to the right that Republicans endorsed him, but he and his staff and volunteers are claiming the Democrats should support him.  I disagree.

I know a good Democrat who won in a conservative district by using typical Republican buzz phrases.  The buzz phrases were basically the same for both parties, but the definitions were different.  When both talked of lower taxes, the candidate on the right talked in general terms of lower taxes without accounting for how to deal with the lost revenue.  The candidate on the right talked about lower taxes with a plan to expand the tax base, spread the responsibility more fairly, and make more responsible decisions about spending.  The candidate on the left won in the conservative district, and did exactly what he said he would do.  Republicans called him a liar and claimed he pretended to believe in Republican values as a candidate, when in reality, they only listened to the superficial arguments, without going into detail of what he meant.

I believe Dan Griffith is stealthily courting the religious right, hardcore Republicans and TEA Partiers, while using arguments and buzz phrases that might appeal to independents and even Democrats.  But I believe all indications are that he ultimate goal is got elected and be an activist judge for the far-right.

The only proof I need is his conversation with an extremist right-wing media host when he said regarding abortion or immigration that you can have the “right person” in the legislature, but a judge can overturn the laws the legislature makes.

Our Supreme Court Judges have the ultimate responsibility to uphold our constitution, not to rewrite it based on their religious or political beliefs.  I will gladly vote for a Tim Pawlenty appointed judge over a candidate like Dan Griffith who seems to be running on some sort of mission to make Minnesota, and probably the United States a country where people with certain beliefs are not welcome.

(And before Dan Griffith or any Dan Griffith supporters comment on this post, Dan Griffith should answer why he received Republican endorsement, what his beliefs are on a woman’s freedom to make choices about her own body, whether he thinks everybody deserves the same rights regardless of their gender or sexual orientation, and if Dan thinks my grandmother needs an ID to vote.)

So you think you have no reason to vote in the August 14 Primary because you’re a DFLer?

Are you going to skip the August 14 Primary elections? In my district, there are no legitimate DFL challenges.  Yes, Amy Klobuchar has a couple challengers, but nobody who is a serious challenger.  Mike Obermueller has no primary fight, nor do Andrew Brobston, Colin Lee or Jim Arlt.  But there are a couple of important races.

There are six names on the ballot for Minnesota Supreme Court, three for Chief Justice and three for Associate Justice.  In each race, the top two finishers will move onto the general election, and in each race there is an openly partisan candidate that in my opinion shouldn’t be allowed to compete in the general election.

The Minnesota Supreme Court is at stake here.  The first contest features Pawlenty-appointed Chief Justice Lorie Skjerven Gildea, who is being challenged by Jill Clark and Dan Griffith.  It might seem logical to a DFLer to get rid of Chief Justice Gildea, a Pawlenty appointee, but Dan Griffith is the person I worry about.  In 2010, Dan Griffen was endorsed by both the MN Republican Party and the Constitution Party, who advocates in its party platform to make homosexuality illegal.  Griffith has appeared at fundraisers for Minnesota Tea Party events, including a chartered bus to attend Glenn Beck’s Restoring Honor rally in Washington (Griffith refutes this.)  He is an evangelical Christian who told the Minnesota Family Council that he opposes court decisions that allow for public funding of abortion, prohibit school prayer and ban the posting of the Ten Commandments on public property, and he agrees with court cases that ban adoption by same-sex couples.

In the second race, for Associate Justice, another Pawlenty-appointed incumbent, Justice David Stras, is being challenged by Tim Tingelstad and Alan Nelson.  Tingelstad advocates for inserting the “Word of God” into judicial decisions, never mind the Constitution.   He is quoted as saying “It is particularly vital that a worldview, based upon the Truth of God and His Word, is returned to our highest courts” and “It is not unconstitutional to bring the Word of God back into public education.”  In fact Alan Nelson is quoted as saying one reason he is running is “because Tim Tingelstad’s views on the separation of Church and State scare me.”

Both Dan Griffith and Tim Tinglestad can be stopped at the primary level, so we don’t have to worry about them in November.  The concern on my part is that with all of the Republican primary contests, a lot of far-right activist who believe the separation of Church and State only applies to non-Christian religions, will be out in force, and these candidates may get a boost.

I for one will be voting for the other candidates, I hope you do the same.

I’d also like to add a plug for the Dakota County Commissioner Race in District 1.  Maybe it is an anti-plug.  Christy Jo Fogarty, who is a strong partisan Republican, is running for that Commissioner seat.  Christy Jo is probably not the best candidate to represent the majority in District 1.  I don’t know any of them very well, including Christy Jo, despite the fact that our kids have played sports together, but I met Mike Slavik, he seems pretty likeable and middle of the road.  People on the right call him a “stealth Democrat,” that must mean he is pretty independent, so I will be voting for him, at least in the primary.

Every voter should be considering the impact that these heavily partisan candidates might have on our community, like Griffith and Tinglestad on the Supreme Court, and Fogerty on the Dakota County Board.  The problem in politics is not partisanship, that has always been there, it is the extreme partisans with no ability to be open-minded that we unfortunately have been electing.

Notes: Thank you to MinnesotaCentral for information.  A version of this is also posted at MN Progressive Project and a version was submitted to the Patch news network community blog.

Andrew Brobston Files Today to Challenge Dave Thompson for Senate in 58

Andrew Brobston, a software engineer from Vermillion Township in rural Dakota County, filed today with the Secretary of State to run for the Minnesota Senate in District 58.  The district includes Farmington, most of Lakeville, and portions of rural Dakota and Goodhue Counties.

“I am running for Senate to represent all of us in the district,” said Brobston.  “I want to work to end the divisive politics that frustrate Minnesotans.”

“When the legislature and governor arrived at a standoff that shut down the state government last year, the people of Minnesota lost.  New business owners suffered delays in getting building permits.  Schools endured uncertainty about their finances.  We need a legislature who can work together to solve the real problems facing this state.  Contests of will and one-sided thinking have no place in our government.”

Brobston is a first-time candidate for public office.  His background extends into areas besides software.  He was a school music teacher for three years in Iowa before attending graduate school in music.  Brobston moved to Minnesota five years ago to participate in the doctoral program in saxophone performance at the University of Minnesota.

“To me, Minnesota is about quality of life,” said Brobston.  “The opportunities here are among the reasons I stayed in Minnesota after completing my coursework at the University of Minnesota.”

Andrew Brobston said that he looks forward to listening to the people he will represent if elected.

“As a software developer, I am used to listening to people’s needs and interests and finding workable solutions.  I look forward to putting my problem-solving skills to work for the people of my district.  I need your support to make that happen.”

Find more information about Andrew Brobston at

I had to post something

I’ve written at least once a month since September 2010.  I know I was busy in 2010 with a campaign, but I have no excuse for missing a month now.

I know exactly why I might have missed a month if I hadn’t written this.  I know why nothing is boiling over for me to write about, I’m sick of partisan politics.  I’m not even getting upset at the hypocrites who could always get my goat enough to write one thing.

For example, Pat Garofalo has become more of a swearword than a goofy and arrogant twitter feed to follow and make fun of.  I recently called him a dumbass on Twitter.  If you know me, you know that is about the most vulgar I get.  Instead of laughing at him (not with him) I feel more like Red Foreman on that 70’s Show and would rather kick him in the ass so hard his nose will bleed.

Well this is a post, so I’ve met my once a month post quota.

I’ll be at the DFL Convention this weekend.  I’m sure I’ll get at least one post out of that, so I should be good for a couple months now.

So in the immortal words of Red Foreman: “Good night, sleep tight, and don’t let the bedbugs put their foot in your ass.”