Marty announces governor candidacy

The state senator will be running for the third time.

Telling the audience âÄúwe can do better,âÄù Sen. John Marty, DFL -Roseville , announced Monday he will be running for governor in the upcoming 2010 election âÄì his third time running for the office. Speaking to about 50 supporters at the State Capitol, Marty, who has been serving in the Senate since 1986, warned that the state âÄúis losing its wayâÄù and promised to address issues in the stateâÄôs criminal and health care systems. âÄúIâÄôve seen countless Minnesotans who cannot afford to go to the doctor, they cannot afford medical care,âÄù Marty, the Health, Housing and Family Security Committee chair, said. âÄúWe will do better.âÄù Marty is the author of The Minnesota Health Plan , a plan to switch MinnesotaâÄôs health care system to a single, publicly funded health plan that would offer coverage to all state citizens. He said the state should help fund health care like police and fire services because the current system is âÄúbankrupting families, businesses and government.âÄù Calling for a return to âÄúMinnesota values,âÄù Marty listed the late Sen. Paul Wellstone and former Minnesota governor Floyd B. Olson as political role models and promised to conduct a grassroots campaign free of influence from special interests or lobbyists. MartyâÄôs announcement comes five months after he first explored the candidacy and now makes him one of a handful of DFL hopefuls expressing interest in the governorship. Daniel Fanning , MartyâÄôs campaign manager, said the campaign has already started laying foundations for its grassroots organizations by recruiting hundreds of volunteers from around the state. He said the student vote will be important and the campaign plans to reach out through social media sites like Facebook and Twitter, as well as through more traditional methods, like campus visits. This is MartyâÄôs third gubernatorial campaign âÄî he lost in the general election in 1994 and in the DFL primary in 1998. In 1994 Marty lost the election to Arne Carlson by a margin of nearly 2-to-1 , a margin a Star Tribune article cited as the largest defeat for any DFL gubernatorial candidate in the partyâÄôs history . MartyâÄôs previous electoral experiences will be helpful as he organizes and prepares his campaign, but University political science professor Kathryn Pearson said his record of losses âÄúcould be harmful.âÄù Republican Party of Minnesota spokeswoman Gina Countryman said voters have already seen MartyâÄôs platform before and rejected it when he ran in 1994. âÄúHeâÄôs the same candidate that MinnesotanâÄôs firmly said no to 15 years ago and heâÄôs coming back with the same tired message of higher taxes and more government,âÄù she said. After his opposition last month to the Senate DFLâÄôs proposed 7 percent budget cut to higher education funding, Marty emphasized the importance of funding education on all levels at his conference Monday. âÄúI really think that if we want a strong future we have to invest in education, and that means early childhood through higher education,âÄù he said. âÄúWe have to cut some things so we can raise some revenue, but we shouldnâÄôt be saying âÄòtoughâÄô if you canâÄôt afford to go to school.âÄù Director of campus organizing for the campaign and University senior Ryan Kennedy said he started working with the campaign a couple of months ago and applauded the senatorâÄôs willingness to stand up for higher education funding. âÄúIt feels great to have a candidate that you know is vocal about his support for students,âÄù Kennedy said.