6 Democratic Mayors in Minnesota Endorse Trump for Reelection

6 Democratic Mayors in Minnesota Endorse Trump for Reelection
Mayor Robert Vlaisavljevich in Eveleth, Minn., a small northern Minnesota mining town with a population of roughly 3,700, on Oct. 2, 2018. (Kerem Yucel/AFP via Getty Images)
Isabel van Brugen

Six Democratic mayors in Minnesota on Aug. 28 announced that they will vote for President Donald Trump in the Nov. 3 presidential election, stating that they believe Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden has shown a lack of support for America’s working class.

The six mayors from the swing state’s Iron Range said in an Aug. 28 letter (pdf) that after “decades” of voting for Democrats, they now “formally endorse the re-election of President Donald J. Trump and Vice President Mike Pence.”

The letter was signed by mayors Larry Cuffe of Virginia, Chris Swanson of Two Harbors, John Champa of Chisholm, Robert Vlaisavljevich of Eveleth, Chuck Novak of Ely, and Andrea Zupancich of Babbitt.

The group cited job losses in the thousands in their iron-mining region as one of the reasons they are now endorsing Trump in the upcoming election.

“Generations of young people have left the Iron Range in order to provide for their families with good-paying jobs elsewhere,” they said.

“We have watched as our constituents’ jobs left not only the Iron Range, but our country. By putting tariffs on our products and supporting bad trade deals, politicians like Joe Biden did nothing to help the working class,” the letter states.

The mayors claimed that the Democratic Party has been “moved so far to the left” to the point that it is unrecognizable.

“It [the Democratic Party] can no longer claim to be advocates of the working class,” the mayors continued. ”The hard-working Minnesotans that built their lives and supported their families here on the Range have been abandoned by radical Democrats.

“We didn’t choose to leave the Democratic Party, the party left us,” they added.

The mayors went on to praise the progress the region has made since Trump’s election in 2016, stating that he “fought for the working class” by implementing tax cuts and standing up to Beijing.

“Now, four years later, the Iron Range is roaring back to life and for the first time in a very long time, locals are hopeful because of this President’s policies and willingness to fight for us,” they said.

They described Biden as “out of touch” with the working class, the nation’s needs, and “with those of us here on the Iron Range and in small towns like ours across our nation.”

“President Trump delivered the best economy in our nation’s history, and President Trump will deliver for us again,” they concluded. “He will continue to fight for every American, regardless of party affiliation and continue to stand up for the working class.”

Separately last week, two former GOP congressmen from North Texas—Rep. Steve Bartlett and Rep. Alan Steelman—endorsed Biden’s election bid.

“It’s simply a matter of country over party,” Bartlett said on Aug. 24. “It comes down to character.”

“Joe Biden, I’ve known him for years. He has a strong character. He’s a strong leader. He’s a decent human being,” he continued. “I don’t agree with all of his policies. But I agree with more of Joe Biden’s policies than Donald Trump’s policies.”

Steelman described Biden as a “uniter” in his endorsement of the Democratic presidential nominee. “That’s what we need now.”

Isabel van Brugen is an award-winning journalist. She holds a master's in newspaper journalism from City, University of London.
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