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Monday, May 22, 2006

Sue Jeffers' campaign press release re: the 2nd District GOP convention


Sue Jeffers' Address to the 2nd District Republican Convention
Bucking Party Leaders, 2nd Congressional District Welcomed Jeffers to Speak

Prior Lake, Minnesota - Bucking orders from state Republican Party higher-ups, 2nd District Republicans welcomed Sue Jeffers to address their convention on Saturday. State Party chairman, Ron Carey, as well as Tony Sutton (Minnesota GOP Secretary/Treasurer) and their considerable entourage, who registered as convention guests were in attendance.

Many delegates approached Jeffers, and expressed excitement that they would finally hear the message that some party officials wanted to squelch.

Sue was introduced without incident or challenge, was met with applause from the delegates and delivered her speech. She was interrupted at one point with spontaneous applause, when she said, "My goal is to open the debate about the candidates we support. We must put candidates on the ballot that believe in the party platform and will work to further our principles. You, the delegates have the power to take our party in a better direction. Recognize that power and use it."

The roughly five-minute speech began by addressing the concerns of some Republican delegates about her connection with the Minnesota Libertarian Party. From there, she moved into failures with current leadership, and discussed some of her conservative ideas for improving state government.

Jeffers' speech was applauded, but not everyone in attendance was happy to have heard from her. Tony Sutton, State GOP Secretary/Treasurer, member of the State Executive Committee and attending the convention as a guest addressed the chair to express his discontent, saying, "I am offended that a person from another political party was allowed to address the convention and attack our Republican incumbents."

No one offered discussion to Sutton's "point of personal privilege," and Convention Chairman Mike Lindsey moved swiftly to other convention business.

A convention delegate brought a six-page piece of literature printed on blue paper to Jeffers' Campaign Manager, Dan McGrath's attention. The blue lit-piece, which attempts to discredit Jeffers' Republican credentials, had no attribution. State campaign law and Republican Convention rules forbid anonymous campaign literature. Under convention rules, any literature not containing a disclosure identifying who prepared and paid for it is to be removed from the convention, along with the party responsible for distributing it, by the Sergeant at Arms.

Delegates told McGrath said delegates told him that the blue-lit was produced and distributed by party officials. Jeffers didn't choose to make an issue of it, and left the convention shortly after her speech.

The improper literature didn't escape the delegates' notice, though. A lengthy debate about the presence of the anonymous piece began after Jeffers had departed. Party officials, attending the convention as guests were asked repeatedly if they were responsible for the piece. They denied any involvement.

Following the convention, Jeffers and her Campaign Manager stopped by the governor's mansion on Summit Avenue in St. Paul to join in the protest of a stadium tax without a referendum. The protest was organized by Citizens for a Stadium Tax Referendum.