• Dick Cohen

Announcement: I'm running

Updated: Nov 8, 2019

Dear Friends:

I am writing to ask for your support as I seek re-election to the District 64 State Senate seat for the upcoming two year term. I was excited about the efforts of Governor Walz and the new House DFL majority this past session, and I want to explain my vision for the 2021-2022 term when the Senate DFL joins them in the majority.

The state budget represents the values and aspirations of our state. It is the most effective tool the Legislature and the Governor have to make changes and advance the goals of Minnesotans. Whether we appropriate funding for schools, paid family sick and medical leave, appropriate funding for the Minnesota Family Insurance Program (MFIP), funding for a carbon free state, or any other needed appropriations, all of this begins and ends with the state budget.

Republicans took a $1.6 billion surplus that we left them in 2017, and turned it into a $11 million deficit. This year, despite the best efforts of the Governor, the Senate Republicans refused to consider any needed changes in budget revenues and appropriations. We face difficult times. The Republican majority forced the adoption of unbalanced budgets, made up of one-time money from the budget reserve used for on-going appropriations, and general fund dollars being used to cover transportation. The result is a weak budget going forward into a slowing economy, not including the Trump trade.

If we regain the majority in 2020, I expect that I will be chairing the Finance Committee again. As chair, I will put every effort into balancing the budget, and using state dollars for what matters to Minnesotans like you.

I was very proud to be a leader of the DFL Senate Caucus in 2013-14 when we were one of the single most progressive legislative caucuses in the history of Minnesota. If we regain the majority next year coupled with the re-election of the House majority, our vision will become a reality:

* Gun reform

* A carbon free state by 2040 or earlier

* Voting rights restoration for felons who have served their sentence

* Drivers' licenses for resident immigrants

* Gas tax allowing for a comprehensive transportation and multi-modal transportation system

* Overturn of Citizens United

* Placing a state Equal Rights' Amendment on the ballot.

* Single-payer healthcare

* Racial equity

* Affordable housing

* Strong funding for the arts

* Legislation that strengthens our labor unions

I look forward to continuing to talk with all of you, and please feel free to call with any questions or comments you have, either at 651-296-5931 or 651-699-4476. Thank you.

Dick Cohen

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