Herald Journal Columns
Jan. 30, 2006, Herald Journal

Lourey’s name calling a mistake

By ROZ KOHLS

We are in for a very long year. State Sen. Becky Lourey, DFL-Kerrick, accused Gov. Tim Pawlenty of racism because he advocated having American Indian tribes share their casino profits with the state last year.

Lourey is among four DFL candidates running for governor. The candidates spoke at a DFL candidate forum, sponsored by the DFL feminist caucus, before about 125 people Jan. 15 in Minneapolis, according to the Pioneer Press.

I can see Lourey thinking Pawlenty was racist if no one else in Minnesota had to pay taxes on profits, and he singled out only Native Americans to pay.

The opposite is true, though. We all have to pay taxes, no matter what race we are.

Lourey must not have any substantive ideas to run on if she has to stoop this low, calling her opponent a racist.

I remember thinking when I first heard who the DFL candidates for governor were, that Lourey was the most experienced. She was first elected to the legislature in 1996. She should know how to run a campaign.

Name calling is a rookie mistake, though.

Lourey is the only female candidate running for governor so far. She has a very liberal voting record and claims to be very sure she will be in the primary in September.

If she continues to resort to name calling on such a thin basis, however, she will appear shrill. Most DFLers want to increase taxes. They would love it if Native Americans had to kick in, too.

The only DFLers willing to support Lourey will be the die-hard feminist wing of the party.

I don’t think her DFL opponents need to worry about her candidacy. Neither should Pawlenty.

Normally, I look forward to election years. Lourey’s name calling this early is a bad sign, though. Minnesotans are going to be slogging through mud all the way to November.


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