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Letters to the Editor

Smith is right for 11A

There is no doubt the timing is right for new representation for West Central Minnesota.

I just finished reading Torrey Westrom's four page personal advertisement. This self- serving propaganda is quite concerning if you actually read through it. He talks about helping education, and all you have to do is talk to a local educator to find out Torrey has done nothing to help education in Minnesota. In fact, along with Gov. Pawlenty, has burdened nearly every school district in Minnesota with financial hardship.

Torrey talks about helping farmers, yet I know of several families that have been negatively impacted by Torrey's actions. It does not matter to me if there is a "D" or "R" alongside someone's name but rather what kind of a job I feel they will do representing the voters and govern in a non-biased, ethical manner. Ask yourself, really, what has Torrey done for West Central Minnesota?

This is why I believe the timing is right to give Bennett Smith, who is running for State Representative of District 11A, a chance to represent the voters of Grant, Douglas and Stevens Counties. We need someone representing us who places the voters' interests ahead of their own self-serving agenda. I have heard comments from people who fear Bennett is too young to be an effective representative. Remember he is the same age as Torrey was when he was first elected. It is time for a change in our representation and I feel Bennett's youth and energy could benefit West Central Minnesota.

I recently had an opportunity to visit with Bennett and was impressed with his knowledge of issues and sincere concern about education and property tax increases. Bennett is excited to go to work for the people of West Central Minnesota and restore integrity to the office of State Representative for District 11A.

A debate has been scheduled between Smith and Westrom for Oct. 7 at 8 p.m. on public TV. I would encourage all District 11A voters to watch and decide who you feel should be our representative.

Terry Christenson


Don't neglect

those struggling

When Jesus talked about how God will judge the nations, he said that God will focus on what we did or didn't do for hungry people and others in need. We need to do all we can to help those who struggle to put food on the table.

Yet much of the legislation to provide that help has stalled in Congress because of resistance by fiscally conservative members. such as Rep. Collin Peterson, who are fearful of supporting programs that might increase the deficit.

Rep. Peterson is right: We need to do all we can to address the deficit. But we can't do it at the expense of people who are struggling to feed themselves and their families. About 10.3 percent of Minnesotan households struggle to put food on the table, and 18.4 percent of children in Minnesota live below the poverty line, according to USDA statistics. Bread for the World has been urging members of Congress to be mindful of the needs of the hunory and poor people as they grapple with the budget deficit.

Contact Rep. Peterson and tell him that the budget should not be balanced on the backs of people who are struggling to feed themselves and their families. His Willmar office is at 3 120 4th St., Willmar, MN 56201, and the phone is (320) 235-1061.

Barbara McGinnis

Bread for the World