While repeat Republican congressional candidate Lee Byberg is preaching to the choir, incumbent Democratic congressman Collin Peterson has been getting endorsed by newspapers across the district.
The Forum Communications chain has endorsed Peterson. In Worthington, the Daily Globe editorial board writes in Peterson should be returned to DC:
Some voters in southwest Minnesota will have the opportunity, thanks to redistricting, to color the oval next to Collin Peterson’s name for the first time.
Doing so would be a wise choice, indeed.
Peterson, a Democrat who has served primarily the northwest portion of the state for the past 22 years, is seeking his 12th two-year term. His opponent is the same as it was in 2010 — Lee Byberg, whom he defeated by a 55-38 percent margin despite it being a very strong election year for Republicans.
How did Peterson buck this election trend? Simple: he’s one of the House’s last remaining “blue dogs,” a group of moderate Democrats that — believe it or not — find it prudent to work diligently with, and garner respect from, their GOP colleagues. Considering the makeup of his congressional district, this should be considered unsurprising. . . .
Up in the Grand Forks Herald, Tom Dennis writes for the board in Re-elect Klobuchar, Peterson in Minnesota:
Here are two elected officials who are not part of the problem in Washington.
Just the opposite. When the ice thaws in Congress, and Republicans and Democrats at last are willing to embrace the Simpson-Bowles compromise budget or another "Grand Bargain," here are two elected officials who are sure to be in the room, hammering out the details.
Minnesotans should be proud. And the rest of the country should know that if more in Washington behaved like Sen. Amy Klobuchar and Rep. Collin Peterson, America would be better off.
The two deserve re-election. . . .
The Fargo Forum writes in Stay with Peterson in the 7th District:
No one knows Minnesota’s 7th Congressional District better than Collin Peterson. The 11-term congressman is seeking a 12th two-year term. He’s earned it and should be re-elected. . . .
. . . In a rerun of 2010, Peterson’s opponent is businessman Lee Byberg. Byberg’s campaign is essentially a retread, rife with the boilerplate of tea party rhetoric. He got little traction two years ago during what was billed as a Republican wave election, and will get less traction this year.
Finally, Peterson’s no-nonsense style and the real substance of his work are refreshing in a political world of double-speak from the partisan playbook. He’s clear, direct and confident. Like it or not, you know where he stands.
There is more to do, specifically on a farm bill, deficit reduction, health care and tax reform. Peterson’s history confirms he will work to get it done. Voters in the 7th should re-elect him.
The West Central Tribune in Willmar writes in Peterson is choice for the 7th District:
The 7th Congressional District, including much of west central Minnesota, faces the same choice in 2012 as two years ago: Collin Peterson, a Democrat from Detroit Lakes, or Lee Byberg, a Republican from Willmar.
The choice is simple: Peterson has a strong record over his 11 terms and deserves to be re-elected for another two years. . . .
. . . He has also displayed a unique ability to work across party lines and interest groups. He has demonstrated such on farm legislation where he has to work with everyone — from the poultry and hog industries to the ethanol industry or from the dairy industry to the food industry.
Peterson has continually won re-election in recent years by double-digit margins, primarily because he gets along, he knows how to work in a bipartisan manner and he treats all with respect.
Byberg is a Willmar business executive, serving in several positions with Willmar Poultry Co. His primary campaign issue still remains the out-of-control government spending, a rerun of his 2010 tea party line. He also opposed the health care reform act and the proposed dairy part of the 2012 Farm Bill. Byberg’s message just has not connected well with voters in this campaign.
Peterson remains straightforward and direct so voters always know where he stands. He continues to work hard on issues of importance in his district: passing a farm bill, working toward deficit reduction or fixing health care reform.
On the eastern edge of the district, the independent McLeod County Chronicle in Glencoe writes in Collin Peterson still our pick in 7th Congressional District:
. . . Ask farmers about Peterson’s usefulness as chairman of the House Agricultural Committee when Democrats were in control. And as the ranking Democrat on that committee while in the minority.
Ask the communities throughout the huge 7th Congressional District about Peterson’s assistance in getting projects done and funds secured for their benefit, including Glencoe on items like the municipal airport designation to the federal aviation system and for local airport improvements.
Ask residents of the district about the congressman’s fiscal conservative nature on spending and the budget, even when it flies in the face of his own party.
The list goes on.
Peterson’s sin, like Dille’s before, is that he is too moderate and too independent a thinker. He also can work both sides of the aisle in the House to find common ground and consensus that are hallmarks of good legislation.
We like that. We like his overall voting record. We support his re-election.
Byberg was not endorsed by any paper in the 2010 election; we'll see if this streak changes in the next two weeks.
Photo: Collin Peterson.