Editorial: It’s good Emmer isn’t totally in step

Published 9:29 am Thursday, April 30, 2015

So U.S. Rep. Tom Emmer is taking heat for not being 100 percent aligned with the Minnesota Tea Party Alliance?

Great! More power to him — and any elected official who shows a willingness to step back from the edges of the political spectrum and more toward the middle.

As this board often proclaims, the biggest problem with policy and government are politicians unwilling to break their lockstep march with their respective political parties and special interests.

Email newsletter signup

In this case, as reported on Page 1A of (the) Times, Jack Rogers, president of the Minnesota Tea Party Alliance is “very disappointed” with the freshman lawmaker, stressing the Delano Republican’s voting record is rated between 50 percent and 60 percent for conservative groups like FreedomWorks and Heritage Action.

FreedomWorks is a super PAC. Since 2011, it has raised and spent millions of dollars promoting its definition of conservatism. FactCheck.org wrote “the group targets for defeat vulnerable Democrats in general elections and Republicans it sees as insufficiently conservative in primaries.”

Similarly, Heritage Action formed in 2010 with the clear intent to lobby for legislation and candidates in line with its sister organization The Heritage Foundation. As a 501(c)3, that well-known conservative think tank can’t do that, but Heritage Action can — and does.

Now before you think Emmer has gone blue, green and all shades in between, it’s worth highlighting the Times Writers Group column Friday from Karen Cyson, who obviously stands on the other side of Emmer’s political fence.

Cyson put forth about 10 different votes Emmer has cast since January that cement her belief he is firmly entrenched with business interests and the rich. She cites his support for measures that reduced pollution liability, improve bottom lines, and seek to accomplish a variety of other wealth-enhancing and environmentally risky ideas.

Ultimately, this coincidental contrast in perspectives from the tea party and Cyson about Emmer’s first quarter in Congress reiterate a few well-known political truths.

First, not only are all politics local, but they are subjective.

Second, Emmer not only knows elections are won by the candidate who wins the moderate vote, but U.S. House members need to start their campaign for their next term the moment they take office in their first term.


— St. Cloud Times, April 21

About Editorial Roundup

Editorials from newspapers around the state of Minnesota.

email author More by Editorial