Roughly 800 people attended a DFL rally in Virginia, MN tonight. The group showed up to see Democratic gubernatorial hopeful Mark Dayton, DFL Sen. Amy Klobuchar, state legislators representing the Iron Range and DFL Rep. Jim Oberstar. The event was organized as a Get Out the Vote rally for DFL candidates.
Oberstar, who is engaged in a tough reelection fight with Republican Chip Cravaack, didn’t back away from any of his votes. In fact, he praised the stimulus and said it was a major factor in why the taconite mines on the Iron Range are hiring again. He also repeated his support for Social Security and defended his vote for the health care bill.
“We just passed the biggest health insurance reform in the history of this country in this Congress and we’re not going to let the Republicans take it away from us,” Oberstar shouted.
Dayton told the audience that he’ll work to ensure that the state’s schools are funded and will work to keep college tuition affordable. He said his plan to tax Minnesota’s top earners is better than the sales tax expansion proposed by the Independence Party’s Tom Horner or the cuts Republican Tom Emmer will need to do if he doesn’t raise taxes.
“These are going to be hard times. There’s no easy way to balance a $6 billion deficit. But there are right and wrong ways. There are better and worse ways,” Dayton said.
Both Dayton and Oberstar are relying on heavy turnout in northern Minnesota and the Iron Range. DFL candidates who have not performed well in this part of the state rarely win statewide.
Here’s Oberstar’s speech:
Here’s Dayton’s speech: