MN Legislature Candidates Face Off in Forum

By KBJR News 1

September 20, 2012 Updated Sep 20, 2012 at 10:32 PM CDT

DULUTH, MN (Northland's NewsCenter) - All 201 lawmakers are up for re-election this November and tonight some of them from the Duluth area TOOK PART IN a forum at St. Scholastica.

Many candidates were DFL incumbents, such as Representatives Mary Murphy, and Thomas Huntley, as well as Senators Tom Bakk and Roger Reinert.

Those challenging them included Republicans Jennifer Havlick, Keith MacDonald and Therese Bower.

The questions the candidates answered several topics, many of them budget related, such as how to stop borrowing money from schools to cover budget deficits and whether higher taxes or tightening the belt is the right way to fix a budget.

Besides 2013 being a budget year, legislators will also have to help formulate the rules around the Voter ID law if it passes this November.

"There's about 200 thousand people will probably would not be able to vote given that what this change would do," said Rep. Thomas Huntley, DFL Dist 7A Candidate.

"I don't see how's there's going to be a lot of people that are dissuaded or prevented from voting," said Therese Bower, R District 7A Candidate.

"I think that we need to make it so it's easily, easy for all individuals to get an ID," said Keith MacDonald, R District 3B Candidate.

"I would say that tribal IDs would be acceptable," said Rep. Mary Murphy, DFL Dist 3B Candidate.

"'How many people do we have the nursing home right now?' and Al said 'we're full we have 28'. I said, 'how many have a picture ID'. One," said Senator Tom Bakk, DFL Senate Dist. 3 Candidate.

"I think we can do it. I think it's important that we do it. I think that any voter fraud is unacceptable," said Jennifer Havlick, R Senate Dist. 3 Candidate.

Candidates for the District 7B seat being vacated by Representative Kerry Gauthier will take part in a separate forum in October. That forum will also include write-in candidates.

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