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Thank you, Senator Lourey, for standing up for rural Minnesotans

To the Editor:

There have been continued attacks on local protections and democracy this state legislative session. Despite the talk over the last year about what rural communities need and want, somehow legislators got the message that what rural people want is the consolidation of corporate power. Perspectives are skewed at the State Capitol where too often corporate agendas rule and big money talks, which makes me grateful that Senator Tony Lourey casts his votes with people instead of the corporates. He knows what rural people really want is a food and farming system that improves the environment and is profitable for farmers. We also want a healthcare system that is affordable and provides quality coverage for all Minnesotans.

This vision is not the direction that our legislators are pushing. In fact, quite the opposite is happening. We see an onslaught of legislation that weakens our protections, favors the largest factory farms, and gives hundreds of millions of public dollars to insurance companies with no accountability. One such bill would double the size of a feedlot before environmental review is required, from 1,000 to 2,000 animal units. This would benefit a few of the biggest factory farms at the expense of rural neighbors, many of whom are family farmers. In the Senate Finance Committee and on the Senate Floor, Senator Lourey voted to protect family farmers and rural neighbors over a corporate-backed attempt for the largest factory farms to skirt environmental review.

Call Senator Tony Lourey and let him know that you appreciate his fight in defense of a vibrant rural Minnesota.

John Fisher-Merritt

Food Farm

Wrenshall Township