After serving for nearly two years in the U.S. House of Representatives, Rep. Tom Emmer deserves a second term representing the 6th Congressional District.
In 2014 ECM Publishers endorsed Emmer to succeed Rep. Michele Bachmann, who did not run for re-election. We saw an opportunity for the district to capitalize on Emmer’s experience in local and state government and his willingness to reduce polarization. He is well on his way to achieving that and is helping to restore the district’s reputation, which had become a punchline under his predecessor.
Emmer is being challenged by Democrat David Snyder, an iron worker and military veteran from Carver County.
Emmer’s service has been very much focused on representing the 6th District. During his freshman term Emmer has been visible throughout the district, holding more than 20 town hall meetings and visiting with constituents and elected officials about the needs of communities in the 6th District. Mid-October he was scheduled to host a veterans’ resource fair in Monticello.
While the Delano Republican continues to uphold his conservative ideals, he has shown a commitment to finding common sense solutions to problems and working collaboratively with Republicans and Democrats. Rather than remaining entrenched with many Republicans adamant to repeal Obamacare, Emmer has said it is time to focus on fixing health care laws.
“It’s time to stop simply wishing we could go back in time and stop Obamacare,” he wrote in an op-ed last month published on medium.com. “I have voted to repeal Obamacare several times. But members of Congress — or any elected official — cannot simply be against ideas. The American people are tired of the bickering between parties and the unwillingness to cooperate. We need creative ideas and alternatives. Republicans and Democrats need to work together to find solutions with health care leaders, and most importantly with the American people at the table.”
In early September Emmer’s third piece of legislation, the Micro Offering Safe Harbor Act, passed off the House floor. It is part of the Accelerating Access to Capital Act, making it easier for small business owners to access capital. This has been a struggle for entrepreneurs as the number of credit unions and banks has dwindled since the enactment of the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform Act, according to Emmer.
This underscores the congressman’s commitment to financial issues facing the nation and the 6th District. Emmer serves on the House Committee on Financial Services, along with subcommittees for financial institutions and consumer credit and monetary policy and trade.
Emmer is also a member of the Congressional Cuba Working Group and has taken a position at odds with many Republicans with his support of lifting the Cuban trade embargo. In March he joined President Obama and U.S. Sen. Amy Klobuchar on a visit to Cuba. Emmer has said the majority of Americans support normalizing relations with Cuba, which he believes will lead to increased trade opportunities after 55 years of embargo.
In 2015, Emmer paired up with 5th District Democrat Rep. Keith Ellison to form the Somali Caucus, which aimed to advocate for stability in Somalia along with efforts to defeat terrorist networks in the U.S. Both Emmer and Ellison have large Somali populations living in their district.
This willingness to work across the aisle is exactly what is needed in a Congress that has struggled with political gridlock.
As for Emmer’s opponent, Snyder’s passion is for restoring strength and stability to the middle class with better wages and opportunities that he said have been quashed with the decline of unions.
Snyder certainly has his merits, but in the end Emmer’s experience makes him worthy of the 6th District vote.
– This is an opinion of the ECM Editorial Board. This publication is part of ECM Publishers, Inc. Reactions to this editorial and to all commentaries on our websites and in print are welcome. Send to: [email protected]