LETTER TO THE EDITOR: Is this how the DFL defends democracy?
The following is a letter to the editor submitted by a reader and does not reflect the views of the Pioneer. Letters can be sent to email@example.com or P.O. Box 455, Bemidji, MN 56601.
In 2022, I, along with many other members of the Libertarian Party of Minnesota went around with handfuls of petitions for people to sign to try and gain ballot access since the LPMN is considered a minor party. We needed 2,000 certified signatures per statewide race to get a candidate on the ballot.
It was highly suggested that we don’t stop at 2,000 because the state would go through with a fine tooth comb and use any reason they could to disqualify people’s signatures. In the end, to make sure that we got enough, we needed 2,700 signatures for a single statewide race. It was a hurdle that we were unable to overcome.
If a party in Minnesota can get 5% of a statewide race’s votes, then they are now considered a major party and no longer have to do petitioning to get onto a ballot.
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Today, there are bills in both the Senate and House that try to change ballot access laws for major party status from 5% to 10%. Which doesn’t make any sense at all.
The Libertarian party has historically only gotten up to 4% of the vote on any statewide race, which begs the question — what are they afraid of? Why intentionally spend so much time and effort to keep third parties off the ballot unless they are actually trying to protect their own interests and maintain their political monopolies?
Is this how the DFL “defends democracy” by making it so that they are one of only two parties that can effectively run for anything in Minnesota? Because they themselves are gatekeeping the very avenue that they are forcing others to be unable to compete in when they arbitrarily change the rules the moment they are worried about a little friendly competition.
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That’s not the actions of somebody who has the best interests of people in mind. That is the actions of authoritarian statist cowards that can’t handle dissenting views of other people.
That is not the kind of people that should continue speaking for Minnesotans, because the moment that they find something that has the potential to compete with their statewide trifecta, they won’t allow true democracy to reign, no.
They will just suppress Minnesotans' voices because their position was never about the good of the people, but about maintaining a political monopoly and that will always happen at the expense of the people.