Republicans have expressed concerns about the
DFL majority moving the Agriculture Finance Committee into a larger
Environment, Natural Resources, and Agriculture Finance Committee.
Republican Reps. Daudt and Hamilton even sent a letter questioning my
support for Greater Minnesota. I believe Minnesotans care much more
about results and they will judge the success or failure of the new DFL
majority based on results for agriculture and rural Minnesota, not on
These attacks are more confusing when you
consider that the Republican majority had the same committee structure
from 2005-06, when they had an Agriculture, Environment, and Natural
Resources Finance Committee. That committee was also chaired by a metro
legislator. Rep. Hamilton raised no objections at that time.
would make one think this is merely political posturing and an attempt
to divide this state. I hope not. Helping farmers is among our top
priorities, and agriculture has been an area of bipartisan success.
Part of being an effective legislator involves building relationships.
I’ve worked to build relationships across both party lines and
geographical lines. If we’re going to be successful, we need to work
together. We’ll have disagreements, but partisan attacks won’t move our
Despite the GOP’s complaints, rural Minnesota will
have a stronger voice in this majority. Eighty-three percent of the
state’s budget is now under the leadership of chairpersons from greater
Minnesota. Greater Minnesota will be heard loud and clear this session.
of arguing about committees or attempting to divide this state, let’s
get to work on improving all of Minnesota. We need to get to work on
boosting agriculture in this state. We need to get to work on improving
our schools and lowering property taxes in this state. It’s time for
solutions, not political posturing.
Rep. John Ward