This morning at the Duluth News Tribune-Duluth Chamber of Commerce debate, it's clear that former congressman Rick Nolan still doesn't get it. To date, Nolan has failed to put forward a single solution to unlocking Minnesota mining jobs and addressing barriers to job growth for Minnesota's steel-based industry. That isn't to say, however, that Nolan doesn't have his own plan: A $250 million taxpayer-funded mining research lab for the Northland.
Former congressman Nolan just doesn't understand mining.
Former Congressman Rick Nolan's View of the EPA:
"These [EPA] rules and regulations are not job killers. Quite frankly, they are job creators (video: http://bit.ly/RZfBOG)
"While he gives a wink and a nod to Twin Cities-based environmentalists, former congressman Nolan is silent on solutions. Currently, the EPA threatens the vitality of Minnesota, the Eighth district, its workers, and their families. Instead, Nolan thinks research is the answer. Without doubt, Nolan's staunch support for imminent job-killing regulations could not be further out of step with this district, and presents an unmistakable danger to Minnesota's taconite jobs and future well-paying jobs like PolyMet," said Cravaack.
Jeff Anderson, Former Duluth City Councilor & Current DFL Staffer:
"My question for [Nolan] is where do we find this money? We have an opportunity right now where we know where there is money to fund this mineral research, this environmental research. And it's with our mining operations on the Iron Range."
"Pie in the sky federal spending is not where it's at. We're at a point in this country where we don't have the money."
"If Mr. Nolan's plans suggest that we invest more tax dollars to study mining, he'll be telling the hard working people of this district that he is out of step with their current plight. People don't want more taxes and fewer jobs, they want just the opposite of that."
"Politics has changed a lot in the past 32 years since Mr. Nolan has left elected office, even then I have to believe that the voters wanted their member of Congress to understand their needs and to work to address them. More federal funding, federal research will not get the hardworking people of this district back to work. We need a leader in Washington DC who recognizes that the three most important issues in this election are jobs, jobs, and jobs."
Chip Cravaack's Record of Commitment on Mining:
Proposed legislation to protect MN taconite industry from job-killing EPA overreach
Enacted "Buy America' steel provisions into law
Defeated efforts to gut two-thirds of domestic steel production
Passed the PolyMet and Twin Metals streamlining amendment
Secured House passage of the BWCA land exchange
Conducted quarterly PolyMet roundtable meetings with state, local, and federal officials