Locals speak out and listen at Worthington caucusesWORTHINGTON — Stan Lindemann had a quick answer as to what brought him to the Nobles County Republicans’ precinct caucus Tuesday night. “Relatives,” he said with a small laugh.
By: Ryan McGaughey, Worthington Daily Globe
WORTHINGTON — Stan Lindemann had a quick answer as to what brought him to the Nobles County Republicans’ precinct caucus Tuesday night.
“Relatives,” he said with a small laugh.
“Can’t you tell his arm still hurts from being twisted?” his cousin, Robert, added.
The Lindemanns, who live in Ransom Township, were among the many who flocked to Worthington High School Tuesday for the Republican caucus, during which attendees took a straw poll of gubernatorial candidates, discussed party platform priorities and elected delegates to county and Senate conventions. Across town — at Prairie Elementary — DFLers gathered for their precinct caucus.
Stan and his wife, Beverly, were attending his first-ever caucus, while Robert and wife Marlys were taking part in their second.
“I wanted to see what goes on and see what this is all about,” said Stan, who said he was concerned about taxes, health care and Social Security. “They’re (government) wasting our money, and we’re not getting bang for our buck.”
“Too much of it goes to the big cities,” chimed in Beverly. Asked Marlys: “Why can’t our tax money stay in our area?”
Republicans and DFLers gathered across Minnesota just two days before the start of the state’s Legislative session, where a huge budget deficit will dominate discussions. Among Nobles County Democrats, there were also some first-time caucus participants.
Monica Campos, a senior at Worthington High School, and cousin Gloria Alatorre both said they were there to make their voices — and those of others in the Hispanic community — heard.
“My mom’s friend called and told me to come and support the Democratic Party, and we feel it’s important,” Campos said.
“As a Hispanic, I feel it’s important to take part in the community,” Alatorre added. “Right now I’m volunteering at Sanford Hospital. … I’m new in the community. Being a citizen of this town, I want to be involved in activities and help.”
Accompanying Campos and Alatorre was Patricia Ambrossi, who was also participating in her first caucus.
“I think it’s very important to be able to try and do something to help make changes,” Ambrossi said.
“And to speak for the ones who won’t be able to vote,” added Campos, explaining many can’t vote even though they are legal residents, or opt to not get involved because of either shyness or fear. “We’re kind of like a voice for them.”
Among Republicans, Robert wasn’t hesitant about voicing his takes on issues.
“I don’t think all that debt going to the banks is doing us too much good,” he said. “I think there are plenty of good conservatives out there that Republicans need to talk to and get them involved.”
Results of DFL and GOP gubernatorial polls were turned into the Daily Globe Tuesday night by representatives of each party. Among Democrats, Worthington High School graduate and former House Minority Leader Matt Entenza had the support of 64 percent of respondents. Marty Seifert of Marshall, another former House Minority Leader, topped Republicans polled, garnering 33 votes.