I went to my Senate District 15 Convention today as a delegate from the February 2nd caucuses. Before leaving the house I thought about bringing the whole works of equipment from the camera to the video recorder to the laptop. However, I decided to just go with my handy dandy blackberry and do some live tweeting because it has occurred to me in the past couple months that when I go and participate in politics rather than stressing myself out about making a name as a political blogger I have a lot more fun. So, I went with my blackberry and had a stress free convention experience. Here are a few of my observations from the day:
- Senate District 15 was obviously not the delegate rich convention today given that we received the 4th and 5th string gubernatorial surrogates to come and speak to the delegates. To my knowledge, not a single gubernatorial candidate made an appearance at the SD 15 convention. The one exception, in my honest opinion, was the Rybak surrogate. There was something unique and fun about having the candidates mom come and stump for them.
- Representative Larry Haws rocked the house as usual. Haws does such an excellent job that to my knowledge there is no Republican prepared to challenge him in what many are calling a Republican year. I’m always proud to have him as my representative.
- I would like to make clear that resolution balloting sucks. Is there a better way to do it? Probably not but it seems to me that many resolutions were duplicates that could have been reasonably folded into each other.
- We came full circle from the Rick Miller debacle in which I outed Miller as the 15A candidate to him denying that he was a candidate to now being a probable candidate.
- Bruce Hentges was unanimously endorsed to run as the DFL SD 15 Senate candidate. Here are a few of his remarks from today:
My dad died suddenly when I was 12. At the time my mom was pregnant with the 10th child. Mom had never worked outside the home and did not go to work until my youngest sister went to school. Without the Social Security checks and other assistance, I don’t know how our family could have survived financially.
When I think of a social safety-net I think of my mom, and I believe that most people who need the government’s help to feed their family and keep their home do so because of a difficult break life has given them, not because they are trying to cheat the system.
- E-12 and higher education are the engines that drive this state forward to a successful economy and a sustainable future.
- Supporting small business leads to decent jobs and fair wages.
- Social Justice and the Common Good is a legitimate goal of good government.
- Finally, we need a government that is accountable and is sustained by a fair system of taxation.
I am old enough to remember a 1973 TIME Magazine story about Minnesota. DFL Gov. Wendell Anderson was on the cover. The article, written shortly after the Minnesota Miracle that reformed financing of public education in the state. was headlined: “Minnesota, A State That Works.” TIME described the quality of life in Minnesota as among the best in the nation.
Subcaucusing, as always, was an interesting experience. I began in a Entenza/Clark caucus and later moved to an uncommitted caucus which was eventually allowed one delegate. At the last minute I decided not to run given there were quite a few others running and because it is always difficult to know if I will be able to go to these next events. All in all the day was enjoyable and I got to reconnect with a few people I usually only see in the online world.
Here are the delegate counts as I understand them:
- Matt Entenza – 2
- Margaret Anderson-Kelliher – 2
- RT Rybak – 2
- Uncommitted/Undeclared – 8 (although the guy elected in mine was a Bakk supporter)
6th Congressional District
- Tarryl Clark – 12
- Maureen Reed – 2