See more of the story

Opinion editor's note: Star Tribune Opinion publishes letters from readers online and in print each day. To contribute, click here.


It's time to get all advertising money out of politics. What we're seeing now and in years past is childish, stupid, false, pandering, lying, idiotic, perverse, dumber-than-doorknobs — and did I mention lying — television advertising. It's cherry-picking, out-of-context, venal — and did I mention lying — crap that couldn't be less applicable to our ability to select the right candidate. I'm sick of people not being willing to spend the time to actually understand what candidates stand for and sick to death of candidates packaging themselves as they do. If I see one more "green" ad with photos of an opposing candidate with crazy-looking eyes, I will execute my television. And I love my television.

Please, please, please. Let us end this stupidity and find a way to actually analyze candidates for what they realistically stand for and what they propose to do. We're better than this. Aren't we?

Skip Zetzman, Eden Prairie


I am hoping that someone can invent a mechanism for my television: I can't seem to get rid of the insidious, constant political ads that run 24/7 (yes, I can mute them). I really would like to see an invention that would eliminate them once I have voted.

Marsha Wolk, St. Louis Park


Kathy Keena stands out

It's been said that if you don't stand for something, you'll fall for anything. With that in mind, I write in support of Kathy Keena for Dakota County attorney. I have watched the Dakota County attorney's race with obvious interest. I've been a prosecutor for 25 years and have had the privilege of working for the Attorney General's Office and Hennepin and Dakota counties. As someone with a diverse experience in many offices, I am proud to work for Keena, whose over 25 years of experience are unrivaled.

Keena's experience led the Dakota County Attorney's Office through the pandemic with both the safety of her employees and the public in the forefront of her mind. She has worked with justice partners to ensure that victims are heard and that cases get fair and just results. She has put in place numerous initiatives to assist with getting through the backlog, including getting COVID relief funding for additional staff, a veteran's treatment court, and a drug diversion program for people with addiction issues. Under her leadership, the office has tried several homicides, getting significant sentences for grieving families. Significantly, her opponent has not had a single jury trial. Not one. He will say that doesn't matter. But it does matter. In order to make the tough decisions a county attorney has to make everyday, it's everything.

The county attorney is a nonpartisan position, and unlike her opponent, Keena has not sought any endorsement from a political party. That's because decisions made by the county attorney need to be made based on the law, the Constitution and what is a fair and just result. To be subject to any political influence would be an abdication of the duties of the county attorney. I urge voters to support the experienced candidate for Dakota County attorney: Kathy Keena. For all of the above reasons, it matters.

Cheri Townsend, St. Paul


I am writing regarding a critical race in Dakota County that has, to date, received little press attention — the race for Dakota County attorney between Matt Little and Kathy Keena. Keena has refused to respond to any substantive questions regarding her policy positions and claimed to be nonpartisan while attending GOP meet-and-greets and is endorsed by the GOP chair of Senate District 57. I think it is important to identify the qualifications of the candidates, and I believe Little is uniquely qualified for this important position.

I've had the pleasure of knowing Little since we were law school classmates in 2011. We spent many hours in school figuring out property law together at one or another of the Caribou Coffees in Lakeville back when he was a member of Lakeville City Council. I am now a partner at a boutique litigation firm in Minneapolis after having worked for several years at one of the largest firms in the Twin Cities. I am writing because, having recently moved to Eagan, I can confidently say that Dakota County is most fortunate to have Little on the ballot for Dakota County attorney.

In the years I've known Little, I have observed that he is a terrific lawyer to whom I have referred clients in his private practice. Any number of the elite large (or small) firms in town would happily hire him. He graduated at the top of our class. His practical knowledge of the law stands up next to anyone I practice with and against to this day. He's comfortable in a courtroom and he's comfortable making the hard legal decisions behind the scenes. Simply put, he's a real lawyer. Instead of choosing the money, he has chosen a path of public service. These are the types of people we need in offices like that of county attorney — a skilled attorney who chooses public service not because it's the only job he can get but because he will be great at the job, because he cares about the residents of the county and because our community will be better for his service.

Dakota County will be safer and more just with Matt Little as county attorney. I will proudly cast my ballot for him this November, and I hope my neighbors will join me.

Cassandra Merrick, Eagan


Where was Walz?

It was so disappointing that Gov. Tim Walz refused to debate Scott Jensen Sunday night, depriving every citizen of Minnesota an opportunity to observe their differences in a spirited contest on KSTP television ("Hopefuls in statewide races trade barbs"). Jensen was essentially given uninterrupted free rein to elaborate on the low points of the Walz administration and state his case to earn the privilege of serving as our next Minnesota governor. He gave a masterful performance, flawlessly responding to a dozen questions in an intelligent, well-reasoned, commonsense performance, including a strong opening statement and conclusion over his 30 minutes under fire.

Gov. Walz did himself and all of us a disservice by refusing to debate, while offering no reason for his planned no-show. What are we to think? Perhaps he felt he had everything to lose and nothing to gain? Is he embarrassed about defending his past four years and our current Minnesota condition? It seems arrogant to refuse such an anticipated opportunity to state his case for another four years and defend any progress he feels he made and not even give voters any reasons at all. Perhaps it will remain a mystery. Nov. 8 will determine if it mattered!

Michael Tillemans, Minneapolis


I'm mystified about why voters think Republican policies are better for the economy. The only economic trick in the Republican playbook is cutting taxes, almost always for corporations and the rich, who will manage an economic downturn just fine. Case in point: Jensen's plan to eliminate income tax and thus cut the state budget in half. No need to wonder what would happen under Jensen's plan; Liz Truss just showed us by bringing the United Kingdom to the brink of total economic collapse. A Republican (Herbert Hoover) led us into the Depression; a Democrat (Franklin D. Roosevelt) led us out. A Republican (George W. Bush) led us in the Great Recession; a Democrat (Barack Obama) led us out. Worried about the economy? Vote for the Democrats.

Jacqueline Rolfs, St. Anthony