State of Minnesota Archives: on Civil Rights


Jason Lewis: Racism still is a problem, but it is not the chief threat

Q: Is racism a threat to domestic security in the United States? Why or why not?

A: Racism has been and still is a problem, but it is not the chief threat to security within the United States. Real progress could be made on the issue through topics like juvenile justice reform, which I worked on while in Congress and my bill was signed into law by President Donald Trump. Equal protection under the law is sacrosanct, and we should make sure it is enforced.

Source: AFA iVoterGuide on 2020 Minnesota Senate race Nov 3, 2020

Jason Lewis: Prohibiting worship during lockdown restricts freedom

Prohibiting worshipping during this lockdown is just the latest attempt at restricting religious freedom by radicals like Senator Tina Smith and Governor Tim Walz. From Little Sisters of the Poor to florists, bakers and even Minnesota filmmakers, liberal Democrats seem to be at war with those who practice according to their religious conscience. I applaud the churches and clergy who showed the resolve to stand up to the Governor's autocratic order unfairly restricting religious gatherings.
Source: 2020 Minnesota Senate campaign website LewisForMN.com Jul 8, 2020

Jason Lewis: HRC: 0 score in Congress, compared LGBTQ people to rapists

The Human Rights Campaign released a statement about Lewis, who had a zero score on the group's Congressional Scorecard while in the House. "Jason Lewis is a dangerously out-of-touch extremist who compared LGBTQ people to rapists and criminals and complained that he could no longer call women 'sluts,'" said Lindsey Clark, HRC regional campaign director for Minnesota.
Source: The Advocate on 2020 Minnesota Senate HRC anti-endorsements Aug 22, 2019

Roger Wicker: Worked to get Medgar Evers home declared national monument

Senators Wicker and Hyde-Smith commended President Trump for signing the Natural Resources Management Act (S.47), which includes a proposal authored by the Senators to designate the Medgar and Myrlie Evers Home in Jackson as a national monument.

"Medgar and Myrlie Evers are heroes whose contributions to the advancement of civil rights in Mississippi and our nation cannot be overstated," Wicker said. "I thank President Trump for signing this legislation that will provide additional resources to preserve their home for future generations of visitors. The Evers' pursuit of equality and justice will be an enduring part of American history."

[Medgar Evers, an African-American, was assassinated in 1963 for his civil rights work. His wife, Myrlie Evans, then moved in 1964 from their home in Mississippi, to a less civil-rights embattled state, California].

Source: Senate press release on 2022 Minnesota Senate campaign Mar 12, 2019

Lori Swanson: Will fight for all citizens to receive the same civil rights

Minnesota does best when it is tolerant and fair-minded. Every Minnesotan deserves to feel included, respected, and welcomed in their community and to fair and equal treatment under the law. The Swanson Administration will support equitable and inclusive policies that give every Minnesotan a fair shot at opportunity and success. Lori has a proven track record of fighting for the individual rights of all Minnesotans.
Source: 2018 Minnesota governor campaign website LoriSwanson.com Jul 4, 2018

Paula Overby: Supports same-sex marriage

Q: Do you support or oppose the statement, "Comfortable with same-sex marriage"?

A: Support--I also believe that government is much too heavily invested in the religious values implied by marriage and family court law is not keeping up with cultural evolution. The system is currently overwhelmed and really in need of a major overhaul.

Source: OnTheIssues interview of 2018 Minnesota Senate candidate May 13, 2018

Karin Housley: Pitched for gay rights but no specifics

Housley is a legislator married to current NHL head coach and worked in TV, radio and real estate. She was elected to the state Senate in 2012. I decided to put this post up to give you access to one of her first interviews. She broke with Trump on a couple of things--she is an enthusiast for net neutrality, she's for a path to legal status for the "dreamers"; she made a strong pitch gay rights, without specifics.
Source: Minneapolis Post on 2017-8 Minnesota Senate special election Apr 27, 2018

Rebecca Otto: Address racial inequality gaps with social justice

Minnesota has one of the worst racial inequality gaps in the nation. Rebecca believes that the most powerful way to address this shameful gap is to expand economic, health, educational, and environmental justice and equality statewide. This will specifically empower and support communities of color. Her plan to raise the minimum wage to $15 will help address the economic disparities that disproportionately affect people of color. Her plan for 2 years free college tuition will remove the barriers that too often exist for young people. Her single payer health care plan will cover every Minnesotan. Her Minnesota-Powered Plan will drive up wages across the state and clean up the dirty air that hits communities of color the hardest. When you study Rebecca's positions you will see that they work together to empower disadvantaged communities by leveling the economic playing field, opening the doors of opportunity, and providing every Minnesotan with better health & a chance to get ahead.
Source: 2018 Minnesota Governor campaign website RebeccaOtto.com Mar 21, 2018

Jim Newberger: Opposes same-sex marriage

Q: Do you support or oppose the statement, "Comfortable with same-sex marriage"?

A: Oppose.

Source: OnTheIssues interview of 2018 Minnesota Senate candidate Mar 15, 2018

Jim Newberger: Rated 0% by Voices for Racial Justice

Voices for Racial Justice's 2015-2016 "Minnesota Legislative Report Card on Racial Equity" rates Jim Newberger at 0%.

Voices for Racial Justice self-description: "Since 1993, we have built a stronger movement for racial justice organizing in Minnesota and beyond. Our mission is to advance racial, cultural, social, and economic justice in Minnesota through organizer and leadership training, strategic convenings and campaigns, and research and policy tools. We took a visionary step many years ago, putting racial equity into the center of community organizing in Minnesota. As a result, we have seen the emergence of powerful racial equity organizing and leadership across the state. Today our work also produces and supports the many tools & resources necessary to achieve racial equity in our state. We work with communities to build racial equity into conversations about education, economic opportunity, affordable housing, public transportation, criminal justice, and more."

Source: Voices for Racial Justice on 2018 Minnesota Senate race Dec 20, 2017

Tina Liebling: No government infringement of decision to marry

We must protect the freedom of every Minnesotan to speak their mind, maintain their privacy, and make their own important decisions. Government should not infringe on personal decisions that don't impact the health and safety of others-- such as who to love and marry, whether and where to worship, which bathroom to use, and how and when to reproduce.
Source: 2018 Minnesota governor campaign website TinaLiebling.com May 2, 2017

Jason Lewis: Support Hobby Lobby religious right to avoid gay weddings

I believe that citizens should be able to pass state laws of their choice without federal interference from activist courts. I also believe the proper relationship between church and state ought to be simple: government must never interfere with the free exercise of religion, and no one religion should become the policy of our government. That's why the Supreme Court was right in the Hobby Lobby case when they declared a 'sincerely held' religious belief by private actors should not suffer a 'substantial burden' by state interference. When an Oregon baker or a New Mexico photographer is fined for declining to participate in an event that conflicts with their religion, our First Amendment rights to conscience are at risk.
Source: 2016 Minnesota House campaign website JasonLewis2016.com Nov 8, 2016

Steve Carlson: Endorses Trump's efforts to reform elections

I endorse Republican Nominee Donald Trump's efforts to clean up elections, based on systematic rigging of the elections. I have identified clear violations, and really, an abandonment of the U.S. My platform for free and fair elections is more extensive and detailed than Donald Trump's. But this man has done more to underscore the need for election reform and free and fair elections than any recent American.
Source: 2018 Minnesota Senate campaign website Oct 21, 2016

Steve Carlson: Proportional representation laws are unconstitutional

Minority blocs including radical women, questionable black politicians, immigrants who are highly critical of America and in some cases supportive of terrorist actions against us or our allies have seized control of our largest party. These proportional representation laws are unconstitutional and need to be stopped immediately! Today's Minnesota DFL excludes whites and males by placing a cap on their participation so they can't have an influence.
Source: 2018 Minnesota Senate site SteveCarlsonForUSSenate2018.com Dec 12, 2014

Heather Johnson: LGBT persons are created with inalienable right to marry

Q: Why do you think that you have a better chance than past third party candidates?

A: We are at a point in history where a lot of different groups are seeing their personal rights violated. People from different sexual orientations, all different ethnicities, they're all fighting some aspect of the system. Everyone is feeling government infringement of their rights in some way. It's definitely a time to challenge that in politics.

Q: Same-sex marriage appears to be heading toward legalization in most states.

A: I believe that government has no place in marriage, period. It is a contract between two people. The government should only get involved when there is a dispute, fraud, or coercion.

Q: If elected, how will you ensure that the LGBTQ community will gain equal rights?

A: I would oppose legislation that infringes on rights and I would support legislation that recognizes those rights. I believe that those rights are already provided; we're all created with inalienable rights.

Source: News Examiner Q&A on 2014 Minnesota Senate race Aug 11, 2014

Rebecca Otto: Endorsed by Stonewall DFL as ally of LGBT community

Stonewall DFL has announced its endorsement of Rebecca Otto for reelection as State Auditor. Rebecca has evolved to become one of the greatest allies of the LGBT community in public office in Minnesota, and we want to honor and celebrate her years of support to the cause of LGBT equality, and the equality of all people.

Rebecca has been passionate, loyal, and selfless in this support. If one looks at the photos posted on RebeccasRainbow.com, for example, many of the parade pictures are from 2011. She was not up for re-election that year; she came to march WITH the Stonewall contingent. She literally carried our banner that year!

Rebecca Otto has emerged as one of the most principled public servants in the nation, and one of the greatest elected allies of the LGBT community. When people told her earlier this year that in order to get reelected she had to vote against her principles regarding financial assurances for nonferrous mining she refused to even entertain the thought.

Source: 2018 Minnesota Governor campaign website RebeccaOtto.com Jul 28, 2014

Jim Abeler: Government shouldn't redefine marriage

Question topic: Marriage is a union of one man and one woman. No government has the authority to alter this definition.

Abeler: Strongly Agree

Source: Faith2Action iVoterGuide on 2014 Minnesota Senate race Jul 2, 2014

Mike McFadden: Gay marriage ok; but I'm personally for traditional marriage

McFadden wants to talk about fiscal issues much more than he wants to discuss social issues. He said, "I don't know why we're fixated on these issues when people want a job that's going to pay them more."

McFadden said while he personally believes that marriage is "a sacrament" between a man and a woman, he is "fine" with Minnesota's decision to legalize gay marriage. On abortion, McFadden said he is "pro-life, but my focus is on getting kids educated."

Source: Washington Post on 2014 Minnesota Senate race Feb 5, 2014

Mark Dayton: Grant same-sex marriage, but with religious exemptions

Legislative Summary:A bill providing for civil marriage between two persons; and providing for exemptions and protections based on religious association. [Exemptions include] provision of goods, services, facilities, or accommodations directly related to the solemnization of a civil marriage that is in violation of its religious beliefs.

The following prohibitions are removed: A marriage entered into by persons of the same sex, either under common law or statute, that is recognized by another state or foreign jurisdiction is void in this state and contractual rights granted by virtue of the marriage or its termination are unenforceable in this state.

Legislative Outcome: Passed House 75-59-0, May 9; passed Senate 37-30-0, May 13; signed by Gov. Dayton, May 14

Source: Minnesota Legislative voting records on HF1054 May 14, 2013

Erin Murphy: Grant same-sex marriage, but with religious exemptions

Legislative Summary:A bill providing for civil marriage between two persons; and providing for exemptions and protections based on religious association. [Exemptions include] provision of goods, services, facilities, or accommodations directly related to the solemnization of a civil marriage that is in violation of its religious beliefs.

The following prohibitions are removed: A marriage entered into by persons of the same sex, either under common law or statute, that is recognized by another state or foreign jurisdiction is void in this state and contractual rights granted by virtue of the marriage or its termination are unenforceable in this state.

Legislative Outcome: Rep. Murphy voted YEA; passed House 75-59-0, May 9; passed Senate 37-30-0, May 13; signed by Gov. Dayton, May 14

Source: Minnesota Legislative voting records on HF1054 May 9, 2013

Jim Abeler: No state authorization of same-sex marriage

Jim Abeler voted Nay on passage of HF.1054. Legislative outcome: Bill Passed House, 75-59.

Legislative summary: An act relating to marriage; providing for civil marriage between two persons (replacing the current definition of "a man and a woman"); providing for exemptions and protections based on religious association.

Source: Minnesota House voting records(Votesmart 2013-2014 synopses) May 9, 2013

Jim Newberger: Voted NO on same-sex marriage with religious exemptions

Legislative Summary:A bill providing for civil marriage between two persons; and providing for exemptions and protections based on religious association. [Exemptions include] provision of goods, services, facilities, or accommodations directly related to the solemnization of a civil marriage that is in violation of its religious beliefs.

The following prohibitions are removed: A marriage entered into by persons of the same sex, either under common law or statute, that is recognized by another state or foreign jurisdiction is void in this state and contractual rights granted by virtue of the marriage or its termination are unenforceable in this state.

Legislative Outcome:Rep. Newberger voted NAY; passed House 75-59-0, May 9 passed Senate 37-30-0, May 13; signed by Gov. Dayton, May 14

Source: Minnesota Legislative voting records on HF1054 May 9, 2013

Matt Dean: Voted NO on same-sex marriage with religious exemptions

Legislative Summary:A bill providing for civil marriage between two persons; and providing for exemptions and protections based on religious association. [Exemptions include] provision of goods, services, facilities, or accommodations directly related to the solemnization of a civil marriage that is in violation of its religious beliefs.

The following prohibitions are removed: A marriage entered into by persons of the same sex, either under common law or statute, that is recognized by another state or foreign jurisdiction is void in this state and contractual rights granted by virtue of the marriage or its termination are unenforceable in this state.

Legislative Outcome: Rep. Matt Dean voted NAY; passed House 75-59-0, May 9; passed Senate 37-30-0, May 13; signed by Gov. Dayton, May 14

Source: Minnesota Legislative voting records on HF1054 May 9, 2013

Tina Liebling: Grant same-sex marriage, but with religious exemptions

Legislative Summary:A bill providing for civil marriage between two persons; and providing for exemptions and protections based on religious association. [Exemptions include] provision of goods, services, facilities, or accommodations directly related to the solemnization of a civil marriage that is in violation of its religious beliefs.

The following prohibitions are removed: A marriage entered into by persons of the same sex, either under common law or statute, that is recognized by another state or foreign jurisdiction is void in this state and contractual rights granted by virtue of the marriage or its termination are unenforceable in this state.

Legislative Outcome: Rep. Tina Liebling voted YEA; passed House 75-59-0, May 9; passed Senate 37-30-0, May 13; signed by Gov. Dayton, May 14

Source: Minnesota Legislative voting records on HF1054 May 9, 2013

Mark Dayton: Opposed constitutional amendment defining marriage

Legislative Summary: Constitutional amendment to recognize marriage solely between one man and one womanLegislative Outcome: Passed House 70-62 on May 21, 2011; passed Senate 38-27 on May 11, 2011; Gov. Dayton spoke at "Vote No" rallies; "Amendment 1" failed to pass in general election on Nov. 6, 2012, by a vote of 52% to 48%.
Source: BillTrack50 on Minnesota legislative voting records Nov 6, 2012

Erin Murphy: Opposed constitutional amendment defining marriage

Legislative Summary: Constitutional amendment to recognize marriage solely between one man and one womanLegislative Outcome: Passed House 70-62 on May 21, 2011; Rep Erin Murphy voted NAY; passed Senate 38-27 on May 11, 2011; Gov. Dayton spoke at "Vote No" rallies; "Amendment 1" failed to pass in general election on Nov. 6, 2012, by a vote of 52% to 48%.
Source: BillTrack50 on Minnesota legislative voting records May 21, 2011

Jim Abeler: Define marriage as one-man-one-woman

Legislative Summary: Constitutional amendment to recognize marriage solely between one man and one womanLegislative Outcome: Passed House 70-62-2 on May 21, 2011; Rep Jim Abeler voted YES; passed Senate 38-27-2 on May 11, 2011; Gov. Dayton spoke at "Vote No" rallies; "Amendment 1" failed to pass in general election on Nov. 6, 2012, by a vote of 52% to 48%.
Source: BillTrack50 on Minnesota legislative voting records May 21, 2011

Kurt Bills: Define marriage as one-man-one-woman

Legislative Summary: Constitutional amendment to recognize marriage solely between one man and one womanLegislative Outcome: Passed House 70-62-2 on May 21, 2011; Rep Kurt Bills voted YES; passed Senate 38-27-2 on May 11, 2011; Gov. Dayton spoke at "Vote No" rallies; "Amendment 1" failed to pass in general election on Nov. 6, 2012, by a vote of 52% to 48%.
Source: BillTrack50 on Minnesota legislative voting records May 21, 2011

Matt Dean: Constitutional amendment disallowing same-sex marriage

Legislative Summary: Constitutional amendment to recognize marriage solely between one man and one womanLegislative Outcome: Sponsored by Rep. Matt Dean; passed House 70-62 on May 21, 2011; Rep Matt Dean voted YEA; passed Senate 38-27 on May 11, 2011; Gov. Dayton spoke at "Vote No" rallies; "Amendment 1" failed to pass in general election on Nov. 6, 2012 by a vote of 52% to 48%.
Source: BillTrack50 on Minnesota legislative voting records May 21, 2011

Tina Liebling: Opposed constitutional amendment defining marriage

Legislative Summary: Constitutional amendment to recognize marriage solely between one man and one womanLegislative Outcome: Passed House 70-62 on May 21, 2011; Rep Tina Liebling voted NAY; passed Senate 38-27 on May 11, 2011; Gov. Dayton spoke at "Vote No" rallies; "Amendment 1" failed to pass in general election on Nov. 6, 2012, by a vote of 52% to 48%.
Source: BillTrack50 on Minnesota legislative voting records May 21, 2011

Tom Emmer: No same-sex marriage; no civil unions

Q: Should Minnesota recognize civil unions between same-sex couples?

A: No.

Q: Should same-sex couples be allowed to marry?

A: No.

Q: Should Minnesota provide state-level spousal rights to same-sex couples?

A: No.

Source: Minnesota Congressional 2008 Political Courage Test Nov 1, 2008

Tom Emmer: Affirmative action yes; but not in state contracting

Q: Should the state government consider race and gender in state government contracting and hiring decisions?

A: No.

Q: Do you support affirmative action in public college admissions?

A: Yes.

Q: Should Minnesota continue affirmative action programs?

A: Yes.

Source: Minnesota Congressional 2008 Political Courage Test Nov 1, 2008

Mark Dayton: Supports federal funding of arts organizations

Arts Funding: Dayton and Gibson voiced their support for federal funding of arts organizations, including public radio. Grams said he is concerned about whether the government should be financing the National Endowment for the Arts, and presently supports funding it at a reduced level.
Source: By Bob Collins, Minnesota Public Radio on-line Nov 6, 2000

  • The above quotations are from State of Minnesota Politicians: Archives.
  • Click here for definitions & background information on Civil Rights.
  • Click here for other issues (main summary page).
2020 Presidential contenders on Civil Rights:
  Democrats running for President:
Sen.Michael Bennet (D-CO)
V.P.Joe Biden (D-DE)
Mayor Mike Bloomberg (I-NYC)
Gov.Steve Bullock (D-MT)
Mayor Pete Buttigieg (D-IN)
Sen.Cory Booker (D-NJ)
Secy.Julian Castro (D-TX)
Gov.Lincoln Chafee (L-RI)
Rep.John Delaney (D-MD)
Rep.Tulsi Gabbard (D-HI)
Sen.Amy Klobuchar (D-MN)
Gov.Deval Patrick (D-MA)
Sen.Bernie Sanders (I-VT)
CEO Tom Steyer (D-CA)
Sen.Elizabeth Warren (D-MA)
Marianne Williamson (D-CA)
CEO Andrew Yang (D-NY)

2020 Third Party Candidates:
Rep.Justin Amash (L-MI)
CEO Don Blankenship (C-WV)
Gov.Lincoln Chafee (L-RI)
Howie Hawkins (G-NY)
Gov.Gary Johnson(L-NM)
Howard Schultz(I-WA)
Gov.Jesse Ventura (I-MN)
Republicans running for President:
Sen.Ted Cruz(R-TX)
Gov.Larry Hogan (R-MD)
Gov.John Kasich(R-OH)
V.P.Mike Pence(R-IN)
Gov.Mark Sanford (R-SC)
Pres.Donald Trump(R-NY)
Rep.Joe Walsh (R-IL)
Gov.Bill Weld(R-MA & L-NY)

2020 Withdrawn Democratic Candidates:
Sen.Stacey Abrams (D-GA)
Mayor Bill de Blasio (D-NYC)
Sen.Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY)
Sen.Mike Gravel (D-AK)
Sen.Kamala Harris (D-CA)
Gov.John Hickenlooper (D-CO)
Gov.Jay Inslee (D-WA)
Mayor Wayne Messam (D-FL)
Rep.Seth Moulton (D-MA)
Rep.Beto O`Rourke (D-TX)
Rep.Tim Ryan (D-CA)
Adm.Joe Sestak (D-PA)
Rep.Eric Swalwell (D-CA)
Please consider a donation to OnTheIssues.org!
Click for details -- or send donations to:
1770 Mass Ave. #630, Cambridge MA 02140
E-mail: submit@OnTheIssues.org
(We rely on your support!)

Page last updated: Jan 28, 2021