Many Democrats braved blizzard conditions over the weekend to attend the 2018 DFL Endorsing Convention at South Central College.
After a question and answer period with the candidates, incumbent District 19B Representative Jack Considine drew the party nod, and St. Peter City Councilor Jeff Brand was endorsed for the District 19A seat. Current 19A Representative Clark Johnson is retiring.
Brand said he will focus his campaign on several issues, not the least of which is a shortage of qualified workers. “Greater Minnesota is facing a labor shortage and a child care shortage. Those kind of go hand in hand and the legislature, I believe, has the ability to make some inroads and to make some things happen that will impact Greater Minnesota,” he said.
Another high-profile issue is health care, and Brand says it has to be resolved at the state level. He added, “I’m just as frustrated as pretty much everybody else on the healthcare issue. I don’t think we have much time to wait for the federal government to figure it out; at the end of the day, we have to focus on the folks in the state.”
Having grown up on a farm in rural Wright County, Brand said supporting next generation farmers is important. “I want to make it so that we can bring more youth back into farming,” he explained, “So folks can pass off their century farms and their heritage back to the next generation and keep those farmers in the fields working for us and the rest of the world.”
He said other priorities include education, transportation, the environment, worker benefits, and renewable energy. The general election is on Tuesday, November 6th.