Paul Thissen nabs MN Nurses endorsement

Paul Thissen, the darkhorse of the entire gubernatorial race, nabbed a major score yesterday when the MN Nurses Association threw their surgical masks behind him. The powerful, 20,000 nurse-strong union body declared Thissen a candidate who, "exemplifies the characteristics we expect of a Governor." And we bet they didn't even know he's also awesome at the Donkey Kong arcade game...

City Pages spoke with Thissen's wife, Karen, before the news hit. She was really nervous, as this endorsement is huge for the campaign. But part of her remained confident Thissen had a good chance at receiving the nod. He's well respected among nurses from his work as Chair of the Health and Human Services Policy Committee in the House.

Turns out, she had no reason to worry. Here is what the nurses say of her husband:

"Paul Thissen is a champion for Registered Nurses. From his work to make sure all children have health insurance, to his advocacy of adequate RN staffing for patient safety, he exemplifies the characteristics we expect of a Governor," said MNA President-Elect, Linda Hamilton, RN.  "We look forward to working with a Governor who puts patients before profits and who appreciates the role of Registered Nurses."

The endorsement indicates Thissen is turning from a darkhorse to a thoroughbred. If anything, it shows that many Minnesotans are impressed with sweat equity. Thissen works the phones and travels the state from sunrise to way past sundown.

Shameless plug: Pick-up a paper (remember those?) this Wednesday for an in-depth look at Paul Thissen. He gave City Pages carte blanche access to his campaign. Let's just say the dude is indefatigable, most likely a result from his days rowing in the Charles River for Harvard. Look for him to gallop towards the front down the stretch.

*Above photo courtesy of the Thissen Campaign. Notice the Eagle Scout credentials.

H/T Tom Scheck

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