Former state representative Ruth Johnson is asking the readers of the St. Peter Herald to vote for Clark Johnson for the open seat in Minnesota House District 19A, as is past Bluestem contributor Max Hailperin.
Both are asking for support for Clark Johnson in the January 29 DFL primary and the February 12 special election.
Ruth Johnson writes in Vote Clark Johnson for the Minnesota House:
Clark Johnson was endorsed as our candidate for the Minnesota House by area Democrats on Saturday. Clark is a long-time neighbor who knows this area well. I've known Clark for years, and I know he will work hard to build a bright future for us. He will be a strong voice for a stable state budget, fair taxes, and our high quality of life in Minnesota. I invite Democrats to vote for Clark Johnson in the primary election on Tuesday, Jan. 29. Vote Clark Johnson for the Minnesota House!
Hailperin's letter brings up a logistical problem the DFL faces in the January 29 primary: the presence of four DFL candidates on the ballot, one of whom shares the last name of Johnson.
While the three have suspended their campaign and rallied around Clark Johnson following the endorsing convention, the gathering was held after the last day to withdraw from the race. Party rules required a ten-day notice, thus forcing the primary.
Hailperin writes in Vote twice for Clark Johnson:
Our legislature is poised to set aside the divisive politics of fear and to get to work on our shared priorities. We need a budget that balances without short-term gimmicks. We need a transportation network that speeds goods to market without risking lives. And we need an educational system that prepares us for opportunities without limit. Our area needs a voice in this work, but not just any voice---a thoughtful voice. For that reason, I will vote twice for Clark Johnson and urge others to do the same.
First, we need to vote for Clark in the Jan. 29 primary. Two of the four candidates on that ballot will be Johnsons. Remind yourself to vote for the Johnson with a C by humming a few bars of "America the Beautiful," focusing on the line "from sea to shining sea." That way, the primary will produce the same result as the endorsing convention, where 67 of us grilled all four candidates at length and picked the best of the bunch.
Second, we need to vote for Clark in the Feb. 12 special election. That election will let us send to Saint Paul a representative who understands the importance of listening to others, confronting challenges in their full complexity, and collaborating broadly to craft solutions. If you want a candidate who is sure he already knows all the answers, you'll have to vote for someone else. But if you want a candidate who wants to get to work by engaging in a constructive process, then join me in voting for Clark Johnson.
No letters supporting endorsed Republican Allen Quist or IP candidate Tim Gieseke have appeared in the online version of the St. Peter Herald. The special election is February 12.
Photo: Supporters of DFL-endorsed candidate Clark Johnson (above); Clark Johnson (below).
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