On Sunday, DFL Candidate for Governor Tim Walz joined Congressional Candidate Dan Feehan and Minnesota State House Candidates Jack Considine and Jeff Brand in a Democrat pre-election rally at IUOE Local 49 headquarters in Mankato.
North Mankato Senator Nick Frentz opened the event, saying, “Ask yourself this. When times are hard, when there is arguing, when there is fighting, what kind of person do you want to be in charge? Who do you want to be chief of your foundation? Well, I’ll give you a hint. Into all of the negative advertising, what does Tim Walz do? He puts out ‘Halftime in Minnesota.’ Take a minute to think about what’s in that ad.”
Representative Considine added, “We need Tim Walz in the governor’s mansion.”
More than 100 people packed the union hall, including Brand supporters and he said, “There are only two words that matter between now and election day. Voter. Turnout. Go tell your friends, go tell your family. We’ve got a great slate of candidates. We need to get elected so we can do some great things for the state of Minnesota.”
Feehan touched upon the act of violence at a Pennsylvania synagogue. “It’s tough to reflect on the last couple of day, the last week, in our country, too,” Feehan said, his voice cracking with emotion, “There is something out there that is dark, that is filled with hate. The most fundamental American right, the right to peaceably assemble and worship here, was attacked.”
Feehan served two combat tours in Iraq and said he’s no stranger to chaos. “The first time I got shot at. That feeling that you have – when you feel chaos, you can’t move, you can’t think.” Feehan previously worked as a teacher in high-needs districts in the Midwest, and he added, “I think about the first time I was in front of middle schoolers along the way, too. Similar feeling.”
Walz’s 17-year-old daughter Hope introduced her dad to the crowd, and talked about his military service and also the time he spent as a teacher in Mankato. She also shared an amusing anecdote, “He coached a football team and this morning when we were driving to get bagels he said, ‘You know, Hope, the thing I may be most proud of is helping build a successful football team at Mankato West.’ Our program is really good, so we’re clearly very humble in that department. He thinks it was all him.”
Walz said a recent attack ad by the Republican National Committee that claimed Feehan supports terrorism included, “Anti-Semitic, racist undertones. I call it out where it is. You know me, I don’t spend a lot of time calling out the other side but I will not normalize what they’ve done.”
Time is growing short, and Walz said there are many reasons to keep the governorship in DFL territory. “There are 16 Democratic governor’s; it has never been done in Minnesota’s history to have three Democratic turns in a row,” he explained, “2020 is a redistricting year that will either be done fairly in response and respect of our democracy or it will be done to gerrymander and concentrate power in the hands of a few.”
Walz also addressed the synagogue shooting and other recent acts of violence. He said such events cannot continue to be swept under the rug. “At a time when we see terrorist acts of bombs being mailed to civil servants across the country and we saw the horrific act in Pittsburgh…at the very same time, these are the people that tell us we can’t do anything about this. Well, I reject that. We must do something about it.”
Walz said the turnout at the rally was even better than those held in 2008. He traveled by school bus to Mankato, Woodbury, and Eden Prairie.