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Ruud was keynote speaker at Aitkin County GOP convention

McGREGOR — Sen. Carrie Ruud, R-Breezy Point, delivered the keynote speech Saturday at the Aitkin County Republican Convention at the Fireside Inn in McGregor. Citizens from across Aitkin County gathered to elect state delegates, alternates and propose adjustments to the state party platform. Ruud previewed issues the Legislature is likely to tackle this session.

At the top of the list, she said, is rolling back the tax increases imposed by the DFL and the governor during the last session. Ruud indicated she is delighted to assist them in undoing the excessive new taxes the DFL majority and governor created last session.

Republican gubernatorial candidate Rob Farnsworth addressed the group. Crow County Republican Party Chair Josh Heintzeman spoke on behalf of U.S. congressional candidate Stewart Mills III. Speakers also appeared on behalf of U.S. Senate candidates Julianne Ortman, Chris Dahlberg, Mike McFadden and Jim Abler and gubernatorial candidates, Marty Seifert and Jeff Johnson. Several speakers, including Ruud, lauded Dale Lueck of Aitkin who has declared his candidacy for Minnesota House District 10B.

The group sent forward several proposed amendments to the party platform. The amendment on mining was: “Northeast Minnesota has one of the world’s largest copper, nickel and other valuable ore deposits. The Republican Party of Minnesota supports developing those natural resources to the fullest extent possible and calls for development to move forward without further delay. Environment protection including mining regulations must be based on sound science and should not be used as means to stop economic development of this valuable resource.”

The delegates expressed concern over new anti-bullying legislation that would impose new burdens on teachers and school administrators that already have policies in place to deal with bullying.

The amendment on anti-bullying legislation read: “We support the current state mandate on local school districts to develop and maintain an anti-bullying policy. We do not support the proposed Safe and Supportive Minnesota Schools Act legislation, that would impose top-down creation of a state anti-bullying agency, imposing a huge unfunded mandate on local school districts and forcing schools to collect and maintain juvenile bullying behavioral records that would be releasable to outside entities.”

Delegates expressed opposition to imposition of the federal common core school curriculum.

On the topic of the Second Amendment the delegates recommended the following: “We reaffirm the constitutional right of an individual citizen to keep and bear arms, including memorializing that right in the Constitution of the State of Minnesota.”

A slate of delegates was elected that will represent Aitkin County Republicans at the U.S. 8th Congressional District Annual Convention on April 12 at Park Rapids and the State Republican Convention, May 30-31 at Rochester. Delegates include Kari Abbott, Tom Peterson, Dale Lueck, Bill Maxfield, Linda Lueck, John Chute and Randy Thompson. Aitkin County’s state delegate strength was increased from 7 to 8 based on the 2012 presidential election where Romney won Aitkin County over President Obama. Aitkin County Republicans meet monthly on the second Monday at 7 p.m. upstairs in the Eye Glass Center Building, 312 Minnesota Ave. N, just north of the stop light in Aitkin. All interested citizens are invited and welcome. For more info contact Dale Lueck, Aitkin County Republican Party chair, at 218-927-2495; or at

Denton (Denny) Newman Jr.
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