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Reader Opinion: Keep big money out of politics

Minnesota Republicans are putting state government up for sale to the highest bidder, and Rep. Heintzeman is one of the auctioneers. Rep. Heintzeman recently voted to eliminate Minnesota's anti-corruption campaign laws, including spending limits ...

Minnesota Republicans are putting state government up for sale to the highest bidder, and Rep. Heintzeman is one of the auctioneers. Rep. Heintzeman recently voted to eliminate Minnesota's anti-corruption campaign laws, including spending limits for all candidates in state elections. He also removed lobbyist contribution limits, enabling campaigns to be fully funded by lobbyists and special interest groups.

We should be increasing campaign finance disclosure and making it easier for the public to trust state government, but Rep. Heintzeman has instead put forward a corrupt payoff to his corporate backers who spent record amounts in the last election. Rep. Heintzeman's first vote this session was to keep corporate campaign cash hidden, and since then he voted to defeat the same measure half a dozen times. In the same bill that allows corporate special interests to run away with our elections, Rep. Heintzeman is also giving himself an increase in his own housing allowance. This type of self-interest and service to corporate allies does not benefit Minnesotans.

What's worse, Rep. Heintzeman just voted to pass over $5 billion in permanent tax cuts to the owners of the biggest corporations in the state - many of whom don't even live in Minnesota. Rep. Heintzeman and fellow Republicans have closed a perfect circle of corruption - big corporations spend unlimited amounts to elect representatives who will serve them a buffet of special interest pork while in office - making it easier for big business donors to get ahead at the expense of hardworking Minnesotans.

I encourage you to contact Rep. Heintzeman and ask him to keep Minnesota's elections clean and accessible. If he really represents the community, he won't have a problem saying "no" to corporate special interests.

Rep. Ryan Winkler

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DFL-Golden Valley

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