Sen. Dave Thompson sent the following letter to the MNGOP State Executive Committee today.
Dear Chairman Downey and Members of the State Executive Committee,
Thank you all for the incredible service you provide to our state, and to the Republican Party. As a candidate for governor, but more importantly, as a proud Republican and conservative, I’m heartened and excited by the party’s trajectory, and I know that 2014 will be a great year.
I am looking forward to seeing you at the State Central Committee Meeting on October 26. Until last week, I was told that, in addition to the business of electing a new National Committeeman, the agenda would include a forum or debate with all declared candidates for governor participating. Along with my fellow candidates, I was looking forward to a substantive discussion of the issues that are facing our state, and the chance to present ourselves to the Committee Members. Beyond canned speeches, a debate or forum gives these potential delegates the chance evaluate each candidate’s strengths and weaknesses.
Last week I was disappointed to learn that there would be no debate or forum. I am concerned that this decision was made without consultation or input from the candidates, and I believe that the State Committee meeting is the perfect time to hold a forum.
Forums, like the one scheduled for the State Committee meeting, give voters a chance to ask questions of candidates and compare and contrast the four of us. We know that voters appreciate the opportunity to hear from the candidates, and as a candidate, I always look forward to taking questions and discussing my views with voters and my fellow candidates.
I am therefore urging you to reconsider this decision, and reinstate the planned forum. I feel this is especially important in light of the straw poll that will be held in conjunction with the State Committee meeting. A forum will give straw poll voters even more information about each candidate, and help them judge who among us will be our strongest candidate to run against Mark Dayton in 2014.
Thank you again for your service to our Party, and I sincerely hope that you will reconsider your decision.