Sen. David Tomassoni has been an effective mainstay and consistent advocate for the Iron Range since 1993. He can continue to be with his deserved re-election on Nov. 3 in Minnesota Senate District 6.
"My college coach used to say all the time, 'You can't substitute experience,' and I know for a fact that my experience is something I can rely on when I'm at the Capitol and dealing with both sides of the aisle as well as with the administration," Tomassoni said in an interview conducted virtually with the News Tribune Editorial Board ahead of the August primary. "I'm really, really frustrated with what I might term as an era of dysfunction and delay. It really has to stop. The people don't send us there to do all-or-nothing politics. They send us there to actually accomplish things."
Tomassoni’s experience is needed in St. Paul now more than ever with the state facing a budget deficit in the billions, the challenge of rebounding from the COVID-19 pandemic, and the legal responsibility to pass a budget during the 2021 session.
Among Tomassoni's accomplishments in eight years in the statehouse and nearly 20 years in the Senate is the broadening network of high-speed internet on the Iron Range and the $230 million Highway 53 project of a few years ago, which was legally required to use only American steel. He also has been an ardent supporter of the stringent and thorough environmental review process that has brought us to the verge of a PolyMet copper-nickel mine on the Range and that could lead to an underground, economy-boosting Twin Metals mine near Ely.
"The reason for (my success) isn't because I'm special. It's because I've worked with people at this level for a really, really long time, and I've gotten to know them," said Tomassoni, a DFLer.
Minnesota Senate District 6 includes the heart of the Iron Range, stretching from Effie and Bigfork in its northwest to Grand Lake and Fredenberg townships in its southeast. The district is home to Naskhwauk, Keewatin, Hibbing, Chisholm, Virginia, Aurora, and Hoyt Lakes.
Tomassoni is being challenged by Republican John Moren of Canyon, a retired miner and auto mechanic who drove tanks as a Minnesota National Guard member in the 1960s and who more recently has worked as a school bus driver. He stands for mining, the Second Amendment, and the freedoms guaranteed in the Constitution, he said. He does not support voting by mail or refugee resettlement within District 6.
“I believe one thing: Our rights are being taken away,” Moren said in a virtual interview last month with the Editorial Board: “Our children are not going to have a life if we keep going down this road.”
Tomassoni has been standing up for the Iron Range and has been a face of the Iron Range and a strong, effective voice for its interests for 28 years. With optimism, experience, and effectiveness, he has earned another reelection this fall.
ABOUT THIS ENDORSEMENT: This endorsement was determined solely by and was written by the News Tribune Editorial Board.