The Phoenix

Midterm Elections: Who Do I Vote For?

With midterm elections approaching on November 6th, it is important that voters educate themselves on the candidates, and why it is important they vote in the first place.

This election is crucial for Minnesota. There is an open race for governor, two U.S. senate seats up for grabs, and a handful of competitive U.S. House races. Therefore, the decisions of Minnesota voters will have a substantial impact on state and national politics for the next couple of years.
Tim Walz (Democrat) and Jeff Johnson (Republican) are running against each other for governor this year.
Tim Walz is running off the platform of making “One Minnesota” a reality. He believes that One Minnesota is a Minnesota that provides citizens with the rights of fair wages, fully funded public schools, and affordable healthcare. In addition, Walz believes that Minnesota should protect the environment, invest in renewable energy, and maintain our roads, bridges, and transit. Despite Walz’s background of sportsman and veteran, he supports assault weapons bans and funding research into gun violence and background checks.
Jeff Johnson is the Republican candidate running for governor. His allows his Christian faith to guide every decision he makes. He believes that the government can only exercise as much authority as the Constitution granted it and that people make better decisions with their money than the government. Johnson is pro-life and believes that the right to bear arms for personal protection is a fundamental individual right. Johnson believes that restrictions on guns will not solve the problems of violence, but instead believes that more discussion about mental illnesses and family breakdowns will help in making the world less violent.
For the U.S. Senate General election, Democratic candidate Amy Klobuchar is running against Republican candidate Jim Newberger.
Amy Klobuchar’s platform is “Working for the People of Minnesota,” with the aim of a strong Minnesota. She supports bringing down business and middle class tax rates to help the middle class, simplify the tax code, and bring back money that’s held overseas. To responsibly reduce the national debt, Klobuchar will continue to push for legislation to close loopholes, cut subsisidies to oil companies, but will not back cuts to Social Security or Medicare. Klobuchar believes that the immigration system is holding back the economy and has therefore worked to pass reform that would allow immigrants a pathway to citizenship. She also believes that all Minnesotans should have access to high quality healthcare and therefore believes Congress must improve the Affordable Care Act. Lastly, Klobuchar supports universal background checks, closing gun show loopholes, and keeping guns away from terrorists, stalkers, and mentally ill individuals.
Jim Newberger worked in the Minnesota Legislature to keep jobs in Minnesota, grow the economy, stop government from attacking small businesses and farmers, and to protect the unborn, our constitutional rights, and freedom from government intrusion. He believes that he will be able to continue to fight for these causes in the U.S. Senate. In general, Newberger believes in lower taxes and therefore would make all 2017 tax cuts permanent. Newberger also supports Trump’s idea of the Mexico border wall and believes that all borders should be secured. As for health care, Newberger would vote to repeal the Affordable Care Act and would instead replace it with a free market system that in his opinion would bring costs down while increasing quality. Newberger is pro-life and does not support abortion, but he does support the Second Amendment and believes that most gun violence is due to a mental health crisis, which should be addressed separately.
For the U.S. Senate Special election, Dayton-nominated, Tina Smith (D) is running against Karin Housley (R) in hopes of taking Al Franken’s old seat for the remainder of his term.
Tina Smith is focused on building a Minnesota that works for everyone. In order to execute this, Smith is opposed to repealing the ACA and says it is necessary, especially for pre-existing health conditions. In addition, she hopes to pass common-sense gun restrictions and has previously supported improved background checks, bans on bump stocks, assault weapons, and bans that prevent convicted stalkers from buying guns. Tina Smith is trying to find a bipartisan solution for taxes. She supports tax reform that makes family the priority. Although, she does call for parties to work together to address our National Debt, she does not stand for cutting programs such as social security. Lastly, Smith hopes to execute a fair immigration process that ensures the well-being of families and prevents the wrong people from coming to the United States.
Karin Housley is running off of the platform of building a thriving economy, healthy families, and an accountable government. She believes that her experience in business and state senate will allow her to be a new voice for Minnesota. Since Housley believes that ACA reduced quality of care, she thinks the solution is patient centered and market driven. Karin also says that the 2017 tax law brought unemployment and job growth with positive effects on the economy. Therefore, she supports permanent cuts. Housley is a support of the 2nd amendment and believes that gun violence should be solved by enforcing already existing laws, preventing criminals from instant access to guns, and improving mental health treatment.
Lastly, since Victoria is in the 3rd congressional district, the two candidates running against each other for House of Representatives are Erik Paulsen (R) and Dean Phillips (D).
Dean Phillips is running off of a platform that promises to reject and return special interest contributions, sign the people’s pledge, and run an accessible campaign. Phillips promises to honor Social Security and Medicaid, in addition to reducing health care costs. In fact, he is a strong believer that all Americans should have high quality healthcare regardless of their age, gender, or socioeconomic status. He also believes that women deserve equal pay for equal work, paid leave policies, and reproductive freedom. Phillips hopes to address climate change head-on and promises to be a vocal advocate for the stewardship of Minnesota’s natural resources. Lastly, Minnesota raised, Dean Phillips plans to combat gun violence by passing universal background checks, reinstating assault weapons ban, funding Centers for Disease Control and Prevention research into gun violence, and supporting mental health programs.
Erik Paulsen hopes to bring hard-working, reform-minded leadership back to Congress. Paulsen supports a strong national defense to ensure our safety and security and believes that we must reduce our dependence on foreign oil. Paulsen believes that to minimize climate change we need affordable and cleaner renewable energy to ensure American businesses and families have access to energy efficient sources. Paulsen believes that too many citizens face high health care costs and that people have lost the power to choose their own doctor or health plan. Therefore, Paulsen hopes to expand access to health care, provide more choices for lower costs, pay for quality, not quantity, and focus on prevention of chronic conditions. One of Paulsen’s top priorities is to create a healthier economy and helping people find work.
Overall, it is very important to vote in the upcoming U.S. midterm elections. Control of both state houses, the U.S. House and the Senate are at stake. In fact, many political observers believe that this could be the most important election in our lifetime. Go vote and let your voice be heard!

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