Feehan:‘The job of Congress is public service’
Published 10:34 am Saturday, August 11, 2018
DFL-endorsed First Minnesota Congressional District candidate Dan Feehan campaigned at the Mower County Free Fair on Friday to greet supporters and meet voters. But before heading to the Mower County Fairgrounds, Feehan stopped by the Herald office.
“Every day of the campaign we’re finding a way to engage with the people of Southern Minnesota,” he said of his visit to Austin. “I don’t take anything for granted. You work everyday to get people to know who you are, how you’re going to fight for them, and what exactly you’re going to fight for.”
A native of Red Wing, Feehan currently resides in North Mankato. He joined the Army after 9/11 and served two tours in Iraq as a combat engineer. Upon returning home, he taught middle school math in Gary, Indiana. For 3 ½ years he served at the Pentagon as an acting Assistant Secretary of Defense, describing his job as “making sure our military was ready for anything.”
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“(It was a job) where I was under oath to support and defend the Constitution and it taught me that policy is a matter of life and death,” he said. “That really motivates me; that spirit of public service I learned growing up here is why I’m running for Congress this year. At a time that feels so divided, I think we need a reminder that the job of Congress is public service.”
Feehan talked about the three greatest issues he believes are facing Southern Minnesota and the nation.
“Healthcare is far too expensive,” he said. “Your options are so few. The distance you have to travel just to get healthcare is too long and when you get there the prices, especially when it comes to medication and prescription drugs, are incredibly high. That’s the biggest issue people are facing. People are struggling with the cost to take care of their loved ones.”
“People work very hard here, but I know a lot of people working two or three jobs just to get ahead because the cost of healthcare is overwhelmingly large compared to what people are making,” he said. “The idea of tax reform has not benefited people here, and trade policy has impacted us. I spent two days at FarmFest this week and you could feel the anxiety about what is coming, not just this year but next year, and all the hard work put into opening up foreign markets to our crops could be at risk.”
“People are concerned about national security; if we’re going to get into a war with North Korea or Iran,” he said. “There are over 40,000 veterans in the district that are worried that we’re going to send troops into harms way when we don’t have to.”
Feehan said he is excited about Tuesday and hopes to convey a message different from the cynicism of the 2016 election.
“2016 was all about blaming someone else; both parties blaming the other,” he said. “You have to cut through with a different message and talk about what you’re for and how you plan to solve the challenges there. But don’t just talk, do things. People want something they know they’re voting for and I think that message will carry the day.”
Feehan said people should support him as a candidate with an independent voice.
“I am a fifth-generation Southern Minnesotan who has lived his life in service,” he said. “The thing about Southern Minnesota is we depend on each other; whether you’re on a farm, in a city or somewhere in between, we rely on each other. I am an independent voice and will always be an independent voice not beholden to party interest, party leadership or corporate PAC money, because I won’t take it. I am fighting each and every day to represent you in the best way through service.”