The hallmark of a truly great performance is making it look easy! Our March 17 Senate District 49 Republicans Convention was a joy to attend this year, thanks to the skill of our SD49 Co-Chairs Randy Sutter & Wayne Wenger, Convention Chairman Louis Tiggas, Convention Administrator Beth Beebe, our Executive Committee, and dozens of volunteers.
145 seated delegates and alternates plus a few dozen observers and guests gathered at Bethany Church in Bloomington to carry out the next step in our grass roots bottom-to-top process. The venue was a new one and the size and layout proved to be an ideal choice. The packed agenda was moved along in a brisk and business-like fashion by Convention Chairman Louis Tiggas (below right).
Delegates heard 11 candidates and candidate representatives throughout the day, starting with U.S. Representative Erik Paulsen (left) who spoke about successful passage of tax cuts, jobs acts and his campaign. The opportunity to hear early in the process from those who will eventually be on the Fall ballot is, for many of us, a key reason for attending our SD Convention.
The business agenda of the convention proceeded, in between guest speakers, to endorsement of Senate District candidates. The convention was split into sub-conventions of House District 49A and House District 49B. Representative Dario Anselmo (above, right) gave a rousing speech to the delegates of House District 49A and was easily endorsed for a 2nd term as Representative for Minnesota House District 49A. The House District 49B sub-convention was adjourned to give more time for discussions with prospective candidates for the 49B seat. The HD49B sub-convention attendees may be contacted to reconvene for a brief endorsing session at a later date.
After the sub-convention business was completed, selection of delegates and alternates to the upcoming Congressional District 3 convention, Congressional District 5 convention, and the Minnesota State Convention went smoothly as nominating committee slates were approved and augmented with nominations from the floor. SD49 will be able to seat 30 delegates at the June 1-2 State convention in Duluth to endorse U.S. Senate candidates, a candidate for governor, and other state office candidates.
Keep reading for more photos, volunteer recognition and information about platform resolutions.
In addition to Congressman Erik Paulsen, the following candidates or their representatives spoke:
• Keith Downey (governor candidate) (above left)
• Jeff Johnson (governor candidate) (above right)
• Mary Giuliani Stephens (governor candidate) was represented by her brother Emilio Giuliani, a SD49 delegate from Eden Prairie.
• Phillip Parrish (governor candidate) provided a link to a youtube video
• Doug Wardlow, running for State Attorney General, was represented by Will Krumholz.
• Jim Newberger U.S. Senate candidate (seat 1) (below left)
• Robert (Rob) Barnheiser, U.S. Senate candidate (seat 1). (below right)
• Karin Housley, U.S. Senate candidate (seat 2), was represented by Rep. Dario Anselmo.
• Rich Stanek, seeking reelection as Hennepin County Sheriff
• Christopher Chamberlain, seeking endorsement for U.S. House in CD5.
Distinguished MN party officials CD3 Chair Patti Meir and State Secretary Barbara Sutter also attended and spoke briefly.
The convention then turned to expressing its sincere appreciation for the day-to-day work of some SD49 volunteers. Carol Brumwell (below left) was recognized for her efforts on the twice-monthly newsletter, David Clynes for creating and maintaining one of the best databases in the State, Bill Holm (below center) and Carol Kerr (below, attired in green for St. Patrick's Day) and John Ward for their tireless efforts on just about everything. And a very special award, the Crystal Eagle, went out to Russell (Russ) Burnison, whose long-term and constant dedication to the strength and vitality of our Senate District has been a true treasure to us all.
To conclude the convention, the delegates tackled suggested changes to the MN party platform and “Action Agenda”, as passed by Precinct caucuses. As each of the 21 proposed resolutions was discussed and voted on, the convention endorsed a total of 10 recommendations that covered subjects including:
To protect rights of religious freedom and conscience of health care workers.
To protect students’ rights of free expression, freedom from bullying and gender identity
To promote economic prosperity by reducing income and estate taxes
To strengthen the rule of law by prohibiting sanctuary cities.
To enjoy and protect our natural resources by allowing responsible extraction and a diversified free energy market.
A rousing “Thank You” to all of the volunteers who made the event such a resounding success. All of those who planned the day, handled note-taking and video, categorized & consolidated resolutions, set up before and cleaned up after, served lunches, checked in attendees, collected money, handed out programs, tallied votes, and performed all of the myriad tasks that, while seen, go unmentioned and not fully appreciated.
Remember: The hallmark of a truly great performance is making it look easy!