State endorsements:House District 59B: Rep. Phyllis Kahn

The University community faces crucial financial, social and environmental needs that require a House representative with experience and dedication to these causes. For 24 years, Rep. Phyllis Kahn, DFL-Minneapolis, has remained a strong advocate for the University and its surrounding community. We feel she has remained loyal to her constituents throughout her career and deserves another term.
Kahn’s vehement opposition to the Southeast Steam Plant’s presence on the Mississippi River illustrates her dedication to natural resources. She has consistently worked for environmental protection along the river, and she staunchly opposes the plant’s harmful use of coal for fuel. Kahn’s opponent, Republican Tom Gromacki, maintains a vague position on the steam plant issue, saying that he supports the idea of the environment “to benefit man” and he needs more research to make a decision. Gromacki’s position is weak compared to Kahn’s years of leadership on this issue.
Kahn is running on her experience in the House and her continued commitment to women’s rights, education and the environment, while broader moral issues have defined Gromacki’s campaign. Gromacki advocates teaching religion in public schools and is opposed to abortion. His self-proclaimed ambition is to “turn the nation back to God.” While his dedication to personal beliefs is admirable, his positions are extreme and exclude others who do not share his religious views.
Gromacki’s promise of no new taxes sounds good, but limited financial experience with the Student Service Fees Committee at the University does not equate to handling the state budget. Gromacki does not have a strong position on state funding for the University, while Kahn’s record shows she has supported increased funding for the University and will continue to do so.
Reform Party candidate Alan Shilepsky claims to strongly support students’ financial needs and participation in political issues. But his belief that community colleges should replace the University’s General College doesn’t promote student diversity, and his support of the existing steam plant shows a lack of environmental concern.