Union backs Pelowski challenger

A state employee union is working against a longtime DFL legislator after he opposed a $1 billion tax bill.

AFSCME Council 5 announced its support today for Winona City Council member Debbie White, a Democrat, in her bid to unseat Rep. Gene Pelowski, DFL-Winona. Pelowski, who’s serving his 12th term, was one of two DFLers in the Minnesota House who voted against overriding Republican Gov. Tim Pawlenty’s veto of the tax bill. He did not seek an AFSCME endorsement.

UPDATE

Rep. Gene Pelowski has sent us his response to the endorsing event:

For the record I was not invited to the AFSCME endorsing event on November 30th at 3pm at WSU which I found out about for the first time today. I was told today that three people attended this event and that the AFSCME lobbyist from St. Paul told them that I stated I did not want to attend. This is not true! I knew nothing of the event! My home or office has no record of being contacted. Since this took place before White announced she was running it is even more curious.

For the record I met with AFSCME the first week of September and went over the events of this session. I have voted for tax increases in the past that were signed into law by the governor. I stated before session, during session and after session that if the tax increase was real I would vote for it. But it is a disservice to the state not to face the real issue of the short fall and deal with it rather than pass fake tax bills to Governor Pawlenty to veto.

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