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Michel's Letter To the Editor,


Fri, Nov 1st, 2002
Posted in Letter to the Editor

Election time for me is usually a time to complain about campaign ads and simply vote for candidates I like, or dislike the least. Not this year! Tim Penny is running for Governor, and I know about this man because my son, David Smutny, worked in Tim's congressional office in Washington as a college intern in the summer of 1986. Dave was awed by Tim's work ethic and tireless personal drive to do what was right for the people of Minnesota. Dave told us that no matter how early he arrived at work, Tim was either already there working, or was hosting a breakfast meeting of members from both political parties to try to reach consensus on some legislation before the House of Representatives. Likewise, Tim would invariably still be there working into the evening after his staff left. He worked hard for the people of the 1st District of Minnesota, but also for everyone, by trying to balance the budget and reduce the deficit. He worked tirelessly for education, agriculture and social justice. He returned unused dollars he received to run his office and refused his pension because he thought it only encouraged people to stay in Congress too long. The 2002 legislative session here in Minnesota was a mess! Most people didn't want the tax rebates, and now we've got a huge deficit. When Dave's father and I finished school in 1964 we chose to stay in Minnesota because the "quality of life" was so good. Taxes were higher here than in most other states, but education, social programs, and cultural life were better and that was important to us. Now our education and social welfare programs are suffering, and the arts (which are proven brain-builders for kids) have been cut to the bone. Transportation in the Twin Cities must improve, but we in rural Minnesota need road improvements, too. Who's going to create priorities and gather leaders together to make our state great again? Several years ago, my son predicted -perhaps "hoped" is a better word -- that Tim Penny would run for Governor in Minnesota when the time was right. It's right now! We helped elect Tim to Congress by margins as large as 78% for 6 terms. Remember those days, and give him your vote, because we need his ability to compromise and his honesty and integrity now!

Paula Smutny Michel

Harmony, MN

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