Reader's View: Walz, DFL shortchanging Minnesota seniors

They caused a massive workforce shortage, and now these nursing homes are turning seniors away at disturbing rates.

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Gov. Tim Walz and the DFL devastated Minnesota’s nursing homes with draconian lockdowns and vaccine mandates. They caused a massive workforce shortage, and now these facilities are turning seniors away at disturbing rates. I have come to see these heart-wrenching challenges firsthand when a family member needed skilled nursing care after a recent hospital stay.

In Northeastern Minnesota, the crisis is more acute due to limited facilities; families can wait years for an opening. Some facilities have open beds but no staff to run the facilities. Families expand their searches to include homes that are miles from their loved ones.

Minnesota can do better for our seniors.

Sadly, our family is not alone. There are more than 1.3 million Minnesotans over the age of 65. Despite a $17.5 billion state budget surplus this year, Democrats are more interested in tax increases, spending sprees, and extreme partisan political priorities than caring for our seniors. The DFL’s one-party rule has passed all kinds of radical leftist measures like an extreme abortion bill, period products for boys in school, and more. But of the Democrats’ record $72 billion budget, they’re sending barely .01% to fund Minnesota’s nursing homes and assisted-living and long-term-care facilities.

Fortunately, Republicans in the state Legislature like Rep. Natalie Zeleznikar of Fredenberg Township are fighting against the Democrats’ dangerous neglect of senior-care facilities and are advocating forcefully for more investments in nursing homes.


I applaud these efforts and urge DFL lawmakers to put politics aside and bolster much-needed funding for Minnesota’s seniors.

Donna Bergstrom


The writer is deputy chair of the Republican Party of Minnesota.

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