It looks like one of the first things I will be doing after the candidate I vote for is elected governor is to protest his actions. Don’t get me wrong. I would most certainly prefer to join thousands protesting support by a Gov. Tim Walz of the Enbridge pipeline (“Walz, Johnson sign off on pipeline,” Oct. 24) than I would protesting the support of a Gov. Jeff Johnson, since I also most certainly don’t want Johnson to be governor. Still, Walz’s refusal to continue the Minnesota Department of Commerce’s opposition to the pipeline is extremely disappointing to this supporter of Rebecca Otto at the DFL State Convention. The oil needs to stay in the ground. Our planet is at risk. The current situation does not allow for politics as usual. Walz needs to step up to the plate.

Thom Haines, Eden Prairie


Under Johnson’s philosophy, needs are neglected

My children and I all have Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome, a genetic connective-tissue disorder. I can tell you from personal experience that health insurance companies do not make money serving families like mine, and as a result would prefer not to provide coverage. Jeff Johnson’s health care plan, as expressed in his Oct. 24 commentary “Universal coverage sounds great — until we get bill” focuses entirely on privatizing health insurance and relinquishing protections for those with pre-existing conditions. It means kids like mine won’t have access to affordable care. It’s that simple.

Dawn Burnfin, Chisholm, Minn.


Vermont’s reality check on the single-payer dream

In his Oct. 24 commentary “Single-payer health care system would cut costs for Minnesotans,” Dane Smith claims that “Minnesotans and their employers would save almost 9 percent on total health care spending if the state had one public system for financing universal, high-quality health care … .” This sounds familiar, perhaps because it echoes the Vermont governor’s 2014 assertion that “we are moving forward on the nation’s first single-payer health care system that contains cost, takes the burden off employers and simplifies the system for all Vermonters.”

Fortunately for Vermont, a realistic appraisal of the single-payer scheme’s potential for bankrupting the state led to its cancellation. While Vermont’s experiment with single-payer demonstrates that utopian fantasies tend to evaporate when tested by reality, Smith indulges in a similar fantasy by claiming that single payer’s “economic savings would be significant; the potential health benefits are immeasurable.”

Peter D. Abarbanel, Apple Valley


Make America great with Hagedorn’s help

Voting for Jim Hagedorn in the First Congressional District would mean the continuing of the process to reform our federal government. We need to help President Donald Trump to continue regulatory reform, tax reform and improve health care as well as welfare reform.

Dan Feehan just wants big government to control us and to keep our borders open and to tax us more. We cannot let that happen.

Vote for Jim Hagedorn to continue making America great again.

Leroy Vetsch, Mankato

• • •

Health care has become the dominant issue in Minnesota’s First District. Hagedorn’s plan would:

• Create insurance competition across state lines.

• Enable consumers to hold tax-free savings accounts to pay for health insurance.

• Require cost transparency to enable medical care shopping.

• Allow small businesses and others to pool for insurance coverage.

• Encourage major medical care to pay for one-time expensive medical treatments.

• Create a pool for people with long-term expensive medical needs and those with pre-existing conditions to receive quality, timely medical care.


Feehan supports universal health care. Under universal health care, government bureaucrats will be in control of health care. If you have a small illness, you will be able to see a doctor. If you need a specialist, stand in line. If you are over 80, you will probably be told you are too old to receive treatment. Under universal health care, you cannot use your own money to pay for special treatment.

The cost: $32.6 trillion over 10 years. Taxes would more than double to pay the bill. Doctors and hospitals would be reimbursed about 50 percent of their actual costs.

So if you are concerned about the future of health care, I urge you to vote Hagedorn for Congress.

Jerry Papenfuss, Winona, Minn.