When a select few think they can dictate and change the duties and rights of the president, Americans should be outraged (“GOP rejects any action to fill court,” Feb. 24). If this doesn’t get us protesting in the streets, I don’t know what will.
At the very least, we need to send a message to these disgraceful few that the country belongs to the people by showing up to vote. While we can’t vote them out of office this year, we can show them our strength in numbers. Please, I encourage everyone to show up to their local voting precinct at 7 p.m. on Tuesday and select the candidate you would like to appear on the ballot in November. It only takes a few minutes, and you don’t have to be a registered voter to make your selection at this time.
To find your polling place, go to http://caucusfinder.sos.state.mn.us and type in your ZIP code, then your address. You’ll see the polling place for Democratic or Republican voters. You can also register to vote on this website, so you’ll be ready to go in November.
Nancy Locken, Minneapolis
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I’d like to encourage Minnesota residents to caucus on Tuesday, and I’d like to offer some perspective as to why I think they should consider Bernie Sanders as their candidate. Bernie has been a long-standing public servant who’s been in political office for more than 30 years. During that time, he has been consistent on his positions of combating climate change, advocating for single-payer health care, getting big-money special interests out of politics and creating an economy that is fair and equitable to all Americans. He is a democratic socialist (a term that has sadly been misrepresented by the media), which means he wants government to benefit all people and wants businesses to make a profit as long as that is not detrimental to the common good. Bernie’s philosophy mirrors that of our great president, FDR, under whom programs such as Social Security and the Glass-Steagall Act were created to protect the interests of the working class. I’d like to close by saying that I find Bernie’s honesty, consistency and dedication to the well-being of the American people noble and inspiring.
Janice Grudecki, Minneapolis
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In the back pages of the A section on Feb. 19 was a small item titled “Superdelegates help Clinton expand lead.” One line reads as follows, “If these party insiders continue to back [Hillary] Clinton overwhelmingly, [Bernie] Sanders would have to win the remaining primaries by a landslide just to catch up.” While technically correct, this statement is highly misleading and more than a bit deceptive.
Superdelegates have never decided a Democratic nomination. They are pledged to a candidate, not committed, and in fact overwhelmingly moved from Clinton to Barack Obama in 2008 as the primary season went along. If Sanders were to have a lead among delegates won in primaries and caucuses going into the Democratic convention, it would be highly unlikely for the Democratic National Committee to go against the will of the people and hand the nomination to Clinton. While I wouldn’t put it past the DNC to try to tip the scales in Clinton’s favor (actually they’ve already done so with the initial rigging of the debate schedule, and the coin flips in Iowa, where Sanders very well may have won the popular vote), it would be political suicide were they to force Clinton down the electorate’s throat with the superdelegates.
What really burns me about the inclusion of the superdelegates in the overall count is the fact that it makes Clinton seem more popular than she actually is. For people not paying close attention, it plays into the narrative of Clinton’s inevitability as the Democratic Party nominee and the marginalization of Sanders as a fringe candidate. No doubt there is an agenda with this messaging: to discourage Sanders supporters. Take heart, Sanders backers. If Sanders wins the popular vote, history suggests he will be the party nominee.
John Moran, Wayzata
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Nothing Sanders proposes is possible because gerrymandered districts guarantee Republican control of Congress. Reworking those districts after the 2020 census will be the work of the 2021 state legislatures. Electing Democrats to legislatures before 2021 is vital to changing gerrymandering and the course of history. That means ongoing, long-term efforts from the precinct level on up to develop experienced candidates who can win. That’s hard work — working and voting for qualified Democrats in every election, including school board, city, county and district and state elections, until there is a cadre of potential candidates to win seats in state legislatures by 2020.
Sen. Sanders has no experience at party-building and is proud to be independent of what he labels “the establishment.” Bringing in lots of new Bernie voters now is not the answer. New young, enthusiastic voters will disappear by 2018, just as young voters disappeared in 2010 (another census year) after President Obama’s success in 2008. The fruit of that 2010 election was congressional districts so gerrymandered that they guarantee Republican wins even when the party’s candidates lose the popular vote.
Why doesn’t Sanders level with his public? Why doesn’t he explain that his crusade will be a long, tough slog? Without overturning gerrymandering, he surely knows his promises and visions are impossible to achieve.
Secretary Clinton has a different approach. Having been engaged in party-building for decades, her approach is to gnaw like a beaver at the ankles of the opposition until they until they lean and eventually topple. Achieve the possible before you aim for that impossible dream.
Billie Reaney, Minneapolis
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Republicans in this country deserve to see Donald Trump as their future candidate. With a history of underhanded dealings to force the U.S. Postal Service to fund future health benefits for future workers not yet even born just to balance the budget and pay for war in Iraq, and dealings such as those by U.S. Rep. John Kline to cut retirees’ payments in the pension bill, and the current attempt by Republicans led by Mitch McConnell to position themselves as guardians of the Supreme Court just because they aren’t in total control — all these clowns will be shown the door when Trump loses the election and the future Democratic leadership will have distanced the country from the Republican foolery of the past.
Brad Knutson, Eden Prairie
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All I see in Donald Trump is the emergence of an American Margaret Thatcher. Someone so divisive and strong-willed appears in politics only occasionally. Trump has so expertly garnered support for himself through his brash talk while also effectively earning the discontent, to say the least, of others. Thatcher, the “Iron Lady,” is widely known as the most divisive political figure in British politics. Perhaps this year’s election will yield another political figure similar to her, seeing as not one Republican candidate seems to be able to slow down Mr. Trump.
Connor Lynch, Savage
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At a political rally earlier this week, I saw hoards of passionate young people, many of whom will be voting in their first election. No, this wasn’t a rally for Bernie Sanders, the so-called hero for young people. Rather, these “kids” were gathering to see none other than Marco Rubio. While many young people support Sanders for his undeliverable idea of free college for all, Marco is putting forth real answers to solve America’s student-debt problem. He has a proven track record with this topic and has introduced bills in the Senate to make it easier to pay back student loans. Therefore, I ask my fellow youths to cross the aisle and take a second look at Marco Rubio, the real advocate for young people.
Chris Rose, Eden Prairie