A new style, a new way!

A new style!

When you announce to people that you're running for Congress you are almost immediately asked two things: "Why?" Is almost always first, and "What Party?" is invariably the second. I fully admit that at the start I didn't have a clear and obvious answer to the first question. I knew, deep down, the multitude of reasons why but I didn't have that polished politicians answer at hand. I would ramble off the laundry list of complaints and issues I had with the current man representing me and my family. I just hadn't yet condensed it down into a coherent set of quick and easily identifiable reasons that I will need while campaigning. This caused some confusion at first and made my announcement to friends and family a little awkward. The second question though, that was easy and I wore that with pride and honor while knowing full well it was also a little confusing to my friends and family. So let me answer these two questions right here and now.

Let's start with the "Why?"

Let's take a quick step back in time and look at how we got to this point. MN CD2 has been a "red" county for quite some time now, represented by Republican John Kline from 2003-2017. While Congressman Kline had a few Socially Conservative foibles that rubbed some of his constituents the wrong way, overall his tenure was not a very rough one. He worked through some very tough times with both Bush and Obama and generally came out pretty unscathed. When he announced his retirement, the dams broke and we were inundated by the crazy election cycle that led to Trump and a Republican majority in the House and Senate. In CD2, we had one of the most contentious House races in the country; with former conservative radio talk-show host Republican Jason Lewis and Democrat Angie Craig running one of the most devisive races in recent American history. The tenor of their campaigns echoed the "crazy" of the Trump-Clinton campaigns and created quite a bit of animosity here in CD2. The animosity was not only for Trump but for the eventual winner in my district, Jason Lewis. 

200 days into the Trump Presidency and most people in America had finally figured out that Trump was as bad as his opponents and critics had said. There were even new signs that the Republican Party and leadership were actively distancing themselves from Trump. The House and Senate were still pretty divided down party lines on most issues; though there were a few moments of active Republican dissent by people like John McCain, Susan Collins, and Lisa Murkowski. Our Representative Jason Lewis in the house wasn't one of the brave ones. He voted down Party lines like the good little Republican he espoused on his radio shows for the last 20+ years.

This is where we are now. We have: A floundering Presidency; a fractured Republican Party; a Democratic Party in disarray; and very few, if any, politicians from either side willing to embrace an outstretched hand from across the isle.

Jason Lewis specifically has participated in the confusion and the political stalemate that is politics today.  He has had quite a few issues back here with his constituents because of it. Not too long ago many people had even gone to his house to protest health care and other major issues because he hasn't yet met with his constituents. At least not with ones that may oppose or disagree with him. He has instead spent his time fundraising and meeting with small select groups where he can control the amount of dissent and conversation. He has actively only represented his chosen few and left the majority of us in CD2 without a true leader. Jason Lewis has shown that he is a knee-jerk Republican crony with no real interest in working toward reasonable, pragmatic solutions to our problems. He holds to the old-school socially conservative politics of a bygone era; Claiming his old style is bold and new. 

So what are we to do when our Representative is working more for special interests than his own constituents?

Right, vote him out. 

But who do we have on the other side?

Let's be honest, the Democratic Party is lost. Shapeless. While most Americans agree with many of the issues presented by the Democrats, their wanton disregard for reasonable actions has caused a significant number of people to leave the party, saying as Reagan said "I didn't leave the Democratic Party, the Party left me!" This feeling of being left in the dark and under-represented has spread to such a degree that almost half of the American public now considers themselves Independent. Think about that number for one second. 1 in 2. How have we come to this?

It's actually a more simple answer than you think... Our politicians follow the "Party before Patriotism" ideals. 

Partisan politics isn't new. What is fairly new is the "all or nothing" stance of most of our politicians; Jason Lewis and his opponent Angie Craig follow this ideal. They will tell you they don't but their actions show a different story.

No one is stepping up to represent the 50%. No one is stepping up to the call of 66% of Americans looking for reasonable, pragmatic solutions to our country's problems. That is until now.

 

The answer to the "What Party are you with?"

 

After deciding that a major change was needed, not the Obama style change of the last 8 years, but a significant change born from the middle. I knew from my past that neither party really represented me fully. In fact I had been Independent for most of my life; I had always been socially Liberal and fiscally Conservative. I had found that the extremists from both party's had kept me away from embracing either of them. I found The Independence Party of Minnesota. The Ind. Party of MN was almost completely in line with my values. They believed in "Patriotism OVER Party!" Until recently I hadn't even known that this was possible. To feel an affinity toward a party whose ideals actually represented more people than our Major Parties represented. Everything clicked into place and I did the math. It's a little ridiculous but it makes sense in our political climate. Here is the equation: 

 

1 (Under-represented by current politicians and parties) + 1 (A party that represents the true Majority) = Run for Congress!

 

Yeah, I know it's a little sketchy and would most likely be graded poorly by all of you math teachers out there. 1 + 1 is supposed to be 2, I know. But bare with me for just a minute. I had been motivated to actively do something. I didn't know what to do. I saw the insane direction of our government and our politicians and I was stuck. I couldn't move. It was shaming to be honest. I needed more than ever to be an active part of the solution and had no outlet. But then I found a party that had the same ideals as me, as most of us, and saw that there was an opportunity to be part of the solution. My father, the former math teacher, would always tell me to "do the math" when presented with a problem. So I did. I put the parts into an equation and found the answer almost immediately. 1+1 = Change? No, not specifically correct. 1+1= Run for Congress? Yes. Absolutely. Undoubtedly yes! The correct answer after only one try. I'm fairly certain this type of math would actually make my father proud!

So with my equation in hand and a new found purpose... Here I am. Running to be the Independence Party of Minnesota Candidate for US Representative in CD2.

 

This is not an easy road. This in fact will probably be one of the toughest endevours of my life. It will also be the most rewarding. I am working to actively bring our governement back to the people in a real, and honest way. That, my friends, is a goal I can not only live with but thrive on every minute of every day. 

This is a new way! A new style! And a moment in history where we, the middle, can take back our government. The time for complacency has come and gone. Today, we have an option that creates real, lasting, and honest change we can get behind.

 

Be safe and I'll see you out on the trail!

 

Bradley Svenson

 
 

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