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Our View / Endorsement: Newberger already focused on Klobuchar

He's a Second Amendment-defending, industry-supporting, pro-Trump, build-the-wall state representative and full-time paramedic from Becker in central Minnesota. And Jim Newberger is the easy pick for Minnesota Republicans on primary election day, Aug. 14, in the race for the U.S. Senate seat currently occupied by Amy Klobuchar.

With relevant experience, a record of public service, and a commitment to helping Minnesotans statewide, Newberger quickly and resoundingly emerges from a field of four Republicans to advance to the general election on Nov. 6. He's the GOP's endorsed candidate in the race.

"I'm not happy with ... the way Sen. Klobuchar (is) voting. I want us to follow President Trump's plan for our future. I support our president's plan. I think we're on a really good path, one of the best paths we've been on since probably President Ronald Reagan," Newberger said this month in a candidate-screening interview with News Tribune Editorial Board members. "(Running for the U.S. Senate) wasn't on my radar. If I wanted to be in government because I wanted a place in government, I have one. Minnesota House District 15B is as red as they come, and I've got a great relationship with my local communities and my local activists. I could stay put (in the Minnesota Legislature)."

Except he couldn't. Not when so many constituents started contacting him over their difficulties navigating the "nightmare" of Obamacare. And not when House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi dismissed as "crumbs" the bonuses employees nationwide enjoyed as a result of the Trump and Republican tax bill this year.

"I don't think it's crumbs," Newberger said, "and Sen. Klobuchar resisted (the tax bill). It's a lot of money for people. It's a big deal. ...

"I believe that the less government we have the better," he continued, criticizing Klobuchar's record of voting "with the extreme progressive left, the Barack Obama progressive left," which is in contrast with claims that she's a moderate.

"If you are in the moderate middle all the way to the far right, you've had no voice or very little for the last 12 years," he said. "I'm a conservative, old-school Reagan guy. That's the flavor of Republican I am, and that's the flavor of Republicanism I'll bring to Washington, D.C."

Also on the ballot with Newberger is Merrill Anderson, a former Honeywell Ordnance Division employee who later ran a public relations firm and nonprofit social services agency. In response to an invitation to meet with the Editorial Board, he submitted an op-ed. It was published July 6 under the headline, "Trump needs help clearing the D.C. swamp."

Also on the Republican-side ballot are Rocky De La Fuente of San Diego, Calif., and Rae Hart Anderson, neither of whom responded to emails or phone messages from the Opinion page.

For obvious reasons, Newberger's appropriate focus this campaign season has been on Klobuchar. While he agrees with her that "we need to find those areas where we can work together, and then it's the golden rule: Treat others like you'd like to be treated," he also said, "When it comes to ... our economic future, especially the future of Northeastern Minnesota and the Iron Range, I'll fight as hard as it takes to make sure this area prospers."


This endorsement editorial was determined entirely by the Duluth News Tribune Editorial Board. The members of the board are Publisher Neal Ronquist, Editorial Page Editor Chuck Frederick, employee representative Kris Vereecken and citizen representative Julene Boe.