In Young conservative activist supports McNamar since Backer wants to repeal marriage equality and Jeff Backer & Nathan Schmid dispute Republican student's presence at endorsing convention, Bluestem looked at a public dispute in Morris between a young conservative activist and Minnesota House District 12A candidate "Istanbul" Jeff Backer.
The exchange continues in the latest edition of the Morris Sun Tribune.
Schmid responds to Backer's earlier accusation that he did not attend the district's Republican endorsing convention in a letter to the editor, Backer's letter a weak attempt to dodge the issue:
I was disheartened to read Jeff Backer's response to me, and it warrants some clarifications.
Along with other UMM College Republicans, I attended the Republican endorsing convention, where we supported Nancy Taffe. Questioning my attendance is humorous – there is a photo of me standing behind Nancy on the cover of the Sun Tribune from that week.
The suggestion that I am not actively involved with the Republican Party is baseless. My involvement began in 2008, when I volunteered for Norm Coleman and the McCain/Palin ticket. In 2010, I volunteered for Tom Emmer, John Kline, and numerous state senators and representatives. In 2012, I volunteered in Stevens County for Torrey Westrom, Scott Dutcher, and the Romney/Ryan ticket.
The claim that I have selective or edited hearing is completely false, and it's a weak attempt to dodge the intent of my letter – to show how Backer's priorities are not reflective of the district’s most important interests. I never stated that traditional marriage is, as Backer put it, "the issue" of his campaign. What I did say, though, is that he proclaimed that if elected, he would author or co-author a bill to repeal same-sex marriage as one of his first legislative actions, something voters deserve to know.
The unfounded insinuations and outright lies coming from Backer are offensive, both to me and the people of District 12A. We deserve a state representative who has enough integrity to not falsely slander someone else in order to preserve their own image.
For his part, Backer submitted another letter of his own, Let’s bury the hatchet in which he attempted to make nice with Schmid:
Let me first apologize to Nathan Schmid. Because he was not a registered delegate, alternate, guest or party official, I mistakenly assumed he was not in attendance.
Throughout my campaign, I have never hidden the fact that I stand for traditional marriage between one man and one woman. When Jay McNamar voted for same-sex marriage, he voted against the overwhelming majority of his constituents where 64 percent voted for traditional marriage.
I understand gay marriage is not high on the priority list Mr. Schmid would like his state representative to address. That is his right, but it does not change my position on this issue, nor does it change the fact there are other top issues on which I have campaigned that we may agree on such as job growth, agriculture, transportation and education.
Regardless of any difference in opinion between me and Mr. Schmid, in the end, the voters of District 12A will decide who their next state representative will be, exactly as our election system is supposed to operate.
On Facebook, Schmid posted a longer letter, prefaced by the explanation that the paper asked him to edit his letter for length. Here's are two screenshots of the longer letter that a reader captured:
Photo: Nathan Schmid and Congresswoman Michele Bachmann, via his blogger profile.
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