Tom Rukavina: For state: Fairness, progress -- and fun

  • Article by: TOM RUKAVINA
  • Updated: April 21, 2010 - 7:33 PM

If you think the DFL endorsement battle has come down to two choices, think again.

The DFL state convention is just a couple of days away. My shirts are pressed. My speech is polished. My American-made underwear is packed.

But, from reading the Star Tribune, you would assume the race for the DFL nomination for governor is over -- that only two candidates, both from Minneapolis, remain.

Nothing could be further from the truth. I've been fighting for more than two decades for progressive principles in the Minnesota Legislature. I think I'm going to be the DFL endorsee for governor because I can connect with ordinary Minnesotans with a message of justice, fairness and economic progress.

To that end, I thought you might be interested in my governing principles to find out about my politics and beliefs. I might be your next governor!

1)I want a government that is responsive to people, that will provide basic services to our community, that is affordable, and that is based upon fairness, with a new, fair tax system that increases revenue so we can end the deficits and unpredictability in our state.

2)I want to be a leader in creating new jobs and a growing economy. I want to help the new, green economy take off by investing in our strengths -- innovation, biofuels and solar energy.

3)I will lead by example, encouraging all Minnesotans to buy American, buy Minnesotan and buy local.

4)I am going to promote Minnesota's agricultural greatness and encourage citizens to enhance our great agricultural economy by adding value to our famers' products.

5)Our transportation system should react quicker to the changing needs of our residents. Let's fill our potholes, plow our streets once again and make sure another bridge won't collapse.

6)I'm for equality in education funding. I'll let teachers teach our children instead of testing to meet the demands of state and federal bureaucrats.

7)I am going to reduce bureaucracy. There is going to be new accountability for our tax dollars. For example, I want our kids -- and folks going back to college or training -- to have a good education that is affordable, accessible, and technologically innovative and inspiring. Money will go toward supporting classrooms and students, not administrators.

8)I am going to fight for a fair and understandable health care solution: single-payer, universal health care.

9)I am going to stand up for people who don't have strong voices. I always have; check my record. I will encourage good wages. I am committed to reducing criminalization, courts and corrections, while reducing juvenile incarceration and criminal record rates so our young people have a chance to succeed. Fairness to minorities and a welcome to new residents will be the policy of the Star of the North state.

10)I'll be kind to people who don't agree with me.

When I'm governor, we will tackle serious issues, but we'll do it with a sense of humor and a lot of passion.

Tom Rukavina, Virginia, is a member of the Minnesota House and a DFL candidate for governor.

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