Republican Jeff Dotseth wants to unseat Democrat Mike Sundin to represent District 11A in the Minnesota House of Representatives this November, and he used Facebook to announce a get-out-the-vote event in Cloquet Wednesday evening.
The topics of discussion to be tackled by keynote speakers—Dotseth himself and State Sen. Jason Rarick (R-Brook Park)—started out fairly standard. “Do you know your rights when it comes to voting?” (Important!) “Do you know that you can become an election judge and make sure your polling place is open to the public?” (Sure!)
From there it takes a turn. “Let’s discuss BLM [Black Lives Matter].” (Okay...) “Are you prepared for when they come to our city?” (Wait, what?) “Do you have a network of patriots that you can count on?” (For what, exactly?) “Where is BLM getting all their funding?” (Literally a million people donated after the death of George Floyd, and the average gift was about $33.)
Look forward to meeting new people and getting more acquainted with the ones I already know! Join us tonight, Wednesday September 23, 2020 at 6:30pm! ����������������￼￼￼Posted by Jeff Dotseth for State Representative MN on Tuesday, September 22, 2020
Dotseth, who previously ran against and lost to incumbent Sundin in 2018, didn’t respond to interview requests about his event, so unfortunately, we don’t know what he meant by any of that.
Here’s what we do know about him. He owns a real estate company: Jeff Dotseth & Associates. He’s been endorsed by the state Republican Party, Pro-Life Action Ministries, the National Rifle Association, the Minnesota Police and Peace Officers Association, and the Minnesota Farm Bureau, among others.
The platform on his website isn’t exactly detail-heavy, nor are his campaign videos. You can find a little more about his political beliefs on his Facebook page.
Some are very specific. In previous posts, he’s professed to “oppose public school policies that promote transgender ideology” and “support legislation that preserves women’s athletics” for so-called “biological females,” an ambiguous phrase that mostly exists to distinguish cis women from trans women.
Also, people “should have their religious freedom protected if they refuse to celebrate a same-sex wedding because of their deeply held religious beliefs.”
Minnesota Family Council Voters Guide just came out. It’s very clear where I stand and where my opponent stands. I...Posted by Jeff Dotseth for State Representative MN on Friday, September 18, 2020
He hasn’t posted much about Black Lives Matter by name—but he seems very preoccupied by unrest and crime outside of his district, which covers some of Carlton and St. Louis County. On July 11, he posted a KARE 11 story about a night of multiple shootings in Minneapolis.
“Coming to a city near you!” he wrote. “Get your friends and family to vote red in 2020, there is too much at stake not to.”
Coming to a city near you ! Get your friends and family to vote red in 2020￼￼￼ ￼ there is too much at stake not to ����������������￼￼Posted by Jeff Dotseth for State Representative MN on Saturday, July 11, 2020
Earlier this month, he posted an MPR news story about rising crime and diminishing police activity, saying, “The same Democrats who want to dismantle and defund Minneapolis Police are now concerned about the spike in violent crime in the Twin Cities.”
The same Democrats who want to dismantle and defund Minneapolis Police are now concerned about the spike in violent crime in the Twin Cities.Posted by Jeff Dotseth for State Representative MN on Wednesday, September 16, 2020
Other candidates endorsed by the Minnesota GOP have been more explicit in their opinions on Black Lives Matter. Blue Earth congressional candidate Jim Hagedorn claimed this year that they were “at war with our country, our beliefs, and western culture.”
Also this year, a post on the Beltrami County Republicans Facebook page—which was attributed, without proof, to Rep. Matt Grossell (R-Clearbrook)—referred to the Black Lives Matter protests following the death of George Floyd as “evil” and part of “an agenda to destroy this republic and any other free nation around the world.”