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As Trump Visits Minnesota, Elected and Local Leaders Call Out His Divisive Rhetoric and Harmful Policies

 

August 19, 2020

ST. PAUL -- Yesterday, as President Trump visited Minneapolis and Mankato, statewide and local leaders denounced his record of divisiveness and hailed Joe Biden and Kamala Harris as the leaders who can bring Minnesotans together and unite the country.

Read more below:

As Trump landed in Minnesota, Governor Tim Walz and Lt. Governor Peggy Flanagan criticized his "in ability to confront" crises and need to "stoke fear and division":

Governor Tim Walz: "When President Trump lands in Mankato today, two things will be top of mind for Minnesotans: his inability to confront the health and economic impacts of COVID-19 and the divisive rhetoric that has defined his presidency. Minnesotans value hard work, compassion, and human decency, and our state deserves a partner in Washington who will work with us to address the most pressing challenges facing communities throughout our state. Rather than further divide us and distract from the real issues facing the country, we need a President who can unite our country and build a better future for our families. That President is Joe Biden."

Lt. Governor Peggy Flanagan: "The President's campaign stop in Mankato today is simply meant to stoke fear and division, which should not come as a surprise to anyone who has watched this administration these last four years. The emphasis, both over and unspoken, has been to divide this country along the lines of race and class. These tropes only exacerbate the deep-rooted inequities that we know have existed in this country for far too long. We cannot afford to be further torn apart as a Nation. It's time to heal, re-build, and unite. Donald Trump has made it abundantly clear that he is not the individual for that job, but I know Joe Biden is ready to lead and I cannot wait to elect him in November."

KARE 11: "When President Trump lands in Mankato today, two things will be top of mind for Minnesotans: his inability to confront the health and economic impacts of COVID-19 and the divisive rhetoric that has defined his presidency," reads a statement from Walz released Monday morning. "Minnesotans value hard work, compassion, and human decency, and our state deserves a partner in Washington who will work with us to address the most pressing challenges facing communities throughout our state."

Fox 9: "I spent this weekend trying to tell the White House why it was a really bad idea to have President Trump go and stand at the George Floyd memorial and use it as a backdrop for his campaign and ignite the pain and the anguish that we are feeling in Minnesota," Gov. Walz said on a Minnesota DFL delegation breakfast ahead of the Democratic National Convention."

DFL leaders and Minnesotans blanked the airwaves in calling out Trump's failed record and how he's failed the state during the pandemic:

KIMT: "John Steigauf is a part of the International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers. He says in this year alone, there's been 302,000 jobs lost in Minnesota. That's why he thinks if Trump wants to take credit for jobs added, he should take credit for the losses as well...He ran for office saying that he was going to bring good manufacturing jobs back to the country," Steigauf said. "And as a proud representative of the machinist union, I'm still waiting to see where those jobs are. All we've seen are plant closures and pink slips.'"

State Senator Nick Frentz: "A quarter of the nation's ethanol is produced within a 2 hour drive of Mankato and [the Trump administration EPA's] regulatory misfunction hurts corn prices. And that hurts our farmers and that hurts all of southern Minnesota." Watch on KQDS (Duluth)

Congresswoman Betty McCollum (MN-4): "This administration has been a total, absolute failure in addressing the needs of our country during a pandemic and it's hurting our economy. Now they're taking it one step farther, at a time when people are even more dependent on the mail, for voting because of COVID. We have the president of the United States pulling mailboxes out of communities, telling postal workers how many hours they can work to deliver the mail. This is unacceptable."

Speaker Melissa Hortman (36B): "It's no secret that Donald Trump's failed leadership on COVID-19 has devastated our state, our nation, and our economy. While Democrats are taking this pandemic seriously and trying to safeguard the health and well-being of Minnesotans, Donald Trump has focused his energy on petty politics and division. Here in Minnesota, we care about each other and we want to see our neighbors succeed. Trump has done nothing to support our communities, he has done nothing to bring our communities together, and he has done nothing to build a better future for Minnesotans and Americans."

MPR: "John Steigauf, a leader with the International Association of Machinists, said manufacturing jobs have been cut since Trump's inauguration. Plant closures near Mankato, St. Cloud and other regional hubs are devastating to rural communities. Steigauf said if Trump wants to take credit for jobs added back as the pandemic restrictions have eased, he needs to be held accountable for what happened before then, too."

KEYC: "'When [President] Trump decided to start these trade wars with China and other countries around the world, it's devastating not just small towns throughout Minnesota, but frankly our whole economy.' Minnesota DFL Party Chairman Ken Martin said ahead of the campaign stop.

Attorney General Ellison: "People really get revved up after Labor Day but not this year. People are pumped and they are working hard already." Watch on WCCO (Minneapolis/St. Paul)

DFL Chair Ken Martin: "Trump's presidency has been a complete disaster for Minnesota families -- from his attacks on Social Security to his harmful trade policies. You do have to rebuild this economy. But it has to be done in a way that benefits every person in the country, not just those at the top." Watch on KEYC (Mankato)

In a Star Tribune letter to the editor, local business owner Ruhel Islam called Trump's rally "more of the same":

"Minnesota is in pain and Minnesotans are hurting. COVID-19 has infected more than 65,000 people. Thousands of our neighbors are out of work. We should be coming together to heal and advance racial and economic justice. It doesn't help when the president further politicizes the killing of George Floyd and tries to pit us against one another. That won't heal our communities and rebuild trust in our neighborhoods. In contrast, Vice President Joe Biden and Sen. Kamala Harris talk about the need to unite the country and restore the soul of the nation. Leaders should aim to bring us together, even when we disagree."

 

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