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Keep up the pressure

THUMBS UP: A group of Highway 14 expansion project proponents testified at a Minnesota Senate committee hearing this week. The group, including Aaron Lambrecht of New Ulm, made the case once again that safety concerns and economic needs make this project incredibly important for this part of the state.

It is wonderful that so many folks took a day out of their schedule to travel to St. Paul and make the argument for Highway 14. The rest of us can help, without leaving our homes, and with little more cost than some stationery and an envelope. We can write letters, send e-mails or phone our representatives, and those on the transportation committees, and let them know how important it is to resolve this dangeous situation.

We regularly print the names and contact information of our state reps and senators on this page. We hope you will use the information to make your wishes known.

District 19A election

THUMBS UP: With Tuesday’s special election done, DFLer Clark Johnson is taking his place as the House 19A representative. District 19A is comprised mostly of Nicollet County.

Johnson’s victory is noteable for one other thing. His Republican opponent, Allen Quist, announced after his loss he will not be seeking public office in the future, but may still be working in the background. It may be just as well for Quist and for Republicans.

Quist’s political career in recent years has been marked by many runs, but no wins. His tenure as a state representative from this area gained him some notoriety for his conservative, religion-tinged statements that made him the darling of what was then called the Religious Right. He challenged then-Gov. Arne Carlson, no favorite of the conservatives, for the Republican nomination and was drubbed in the primary. He ran as a congressional candidate twice, falling to Republican rival Randy Demmer in 2010, and falling to Tim Walz as the party nominee this past year before trying for the 19A seat. His decision to bow out will allow other Republican candidates to develop.

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