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Erik Paulsen Earns Trump’s Strong Endorsement
President backs a loyal footsoldier in competitive race in moderate MN03
Just before midnight last night, President Donald Trump delivered a glowing endorsement to one of his most loyal members of Congress — faux moderate Erik Paulsen.
“Congressman Erik Paulsen of the Great State of Minnesota has done a fantastic job in cutting Taxes and Job Killing Regulations,” President Trump tweeted. “Hard working and very smart. Keep Erik in Congress. He has my Strong Endorsement!”
This endorsement should not come as a surprise. Despite attempting to paint himself as a moderate, Congressman Paulsen votes with Trump 98% of the time, the highest rate in the entire Minnesota delegation, despite the fact that only 40% of voters supported Donald Trump in 2016.
“Donald Trump doesn’t endorse moderates. Congressman Paulsen’s record of voting with the President 98% of the time has earned him the Trump seal of approval,” said Zach Rodvold, campaign manager for Phillips for Congress. “And Congressman Paulsen doesn’t just vote with Trump 98% of the time, he’s beginning to behave like him too, using personal insults and slander and telling lie after lie in his ads and in public appearances. Voters are finally getting to know the real Erik Paulsen — and they don’t like what they see.”
Voters in Minnesota’s Third District, one of the most educated in the entire country, are starting to take notice. A recent KSTP/Survey USA poll found that 17% of Minnesotans who voted for Erik Paulsen in 2016 are making the switch and voting for his opponent, Dean Phillips, in 2018. Here is what some of them have to say:
“I’ve gotten to know Erik as a moderate, but I’ve watched his votes and his interests change as he’s taken more money from special-interest groups,” said Tim from Minnetonka. “I’ve watched him get less moderate on gun control, I’ve watched him get less modeate on healthcare, and I’ve watched him get less moderate on fiscal responsibility. I’ll be voting for Dean Phillips this November.”
“I voted for Erik Paulsen in the past two elections,” said Kris from Eden Prairie. “I thought he was trustworthy, but once Trump was elected I was horrified to discover he actually wasn’t the moderate Republican he claimed to be. His votes align 97% in line with Trump, which I find absolutely unacceptable in a district that voted for Hillary by a wide margin.”
“I’m a lifelong Republican and have loyally voted for Erik Paulsen in the past and even Jim Ramstad,” said Bruce from Plymouth. “This election, however, I’m voting for Dean Phillips, and my reason is respect. I’ve had many conversations with Dean, and while we agree on many of the issues, we disagree on others. But our conversations have always been respectful, and respectful dialogue is the key to finding middle ground, and middle ground is the key to making everyone’s life a little better. This is why I’m supporting Dean Phillips, and I hope that you do, too.”
“I’ve simply had it,” said one of Paulsen’s former supporters, David Hawes from Minnetonka, who has voted for Paulsen four times. “Erik Paulsen is running the worst smear campaign Minnesota has ever seen — and this year I am switching my vote to Dean Phillips.”
Phillips is capturing attention from around the country for running a positive, people-powered campaign built on contributions from more than 67,000 individuals — and zero PACs, special interests, or members of Congress. In April, Phillips challenged Congressman Paulsen to join him in signing the Minnesota Way Pledge, a mutual pledge to eliminate special-interest money and self-funding, and reduce or eliminate spending from outside groups on both sides. Paulsen has refused to sign and is now the 4th-biggest taker of special-interest money in all of Congress — while benefiting from millions more spent on his behalf.