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Mower GOP stresses getting out the vote

AUSTIN — Speakers at the Mower County GOP’s annual Lincoln-Reagan Picnic Tuesday evening all pushed the same message: with about 70 days left until Election Day, getting involved in supporting candidates was more critical than ever.

Republicans from across the county gathered at the Veteran’s Pavilion at Community Park for the annual event. Minnesota Senate Majority Leader Dave Senjem and speakers from the state’s District 27 spoke to persuade a crowd of about 60 people into staying active in their runs for office.

Senjem called the upcoming election the most important in modern history.

“If you’re a Republican and you can’t get upset about this, you don’t have a pulse,” he said.

Mower GOP Chairman Dennis Schminke said a major obstacle for Minnesota GOP supporters right now is putting aside that discontent.

“One of the things I get from people is how upset they are with the Republican Party,” he said, and added Republicans will need to unite and support their candidates in order to succeed.

“If you want to see President Romney do well in office, you have to get behind Allen Quist,” Schminke said.

The candidates asked for whatever monetary donations those present could make, and welcome their time for canvassing efforts as well.

Rep. Rich Murray said people across the county want to focus on two things: economy and jobs. While he supports the existence of programs that help people who are financially in need, he said those programs needed a good way to help those same people gradually transition out of the program and become independent.

“I believe everyone works hard for their money, and you have to hold onto some of that,” Murray said. “We might have an opportunity to fix some of this.”

Minnesota House District 27B candidate Nathan Neitzell agreed, saying he ran for office in response to seeing his money used for the wrong reasons.

Creating jobs would be a better alternative to raising taxes, Senate District 27 candidate Linden Anderson said. He added friends of his who were starting small business were being “eaten alive” by regulations, and farmers were faring no better. Anderson called for the state and federal government to stay out of peoples’ way and let them succeed.

Senjem echoed his sentiment, saying high taxes placed on businesses dissuade companies from setting up in Minnesota. That, he said, results in fewer jobs for Minnesotans.

“We’re not going to tax our way to prosperity,” he said.