To the Editor:
Another view of Representative Tim Walz: Who is this person and what has he done for us in the first district of Minnesota? Most folks know him as an amiable, accessible Congressman, a retired high school teacher and retired Command Sergeant Major in the Army National Guard. But a person is better revealed by what he does.
What has Tim Walz done in Washington? How has he affected us in Minnesota? On a local level (evidenced by his town hall meeting of February 23) he answers our questions with the balance and wisdom gained from his years in Congress, he also asks insightful questions, gained from his years of living in small-town rural Minnesota. Most important, he can create results where they are needed most.
An example: Trimont Minnesota, population less than 1000 residents, was isolated. With a 25 mile travel for groceries, gas and other necessities, families (and seniors, especially) were concerned that they would have to leave their homes. With a private/public partnership they are now enjoying a thriving (albeit small) mall with grocery store, hardware store, and other new businesses that resulted from a partnership with Tim Walz. He listened, understood the needs of families in the “agricultural heartland” and moved forward with project leaders to problem-solve and provide support. He is clear about quality rural policy, and he knows how to be effective.
He is a DFL member, but is a moderate in every sense of the word. He has “reached across the aisle” in Washington with such effectiveness that he has been recognized as the fourth (out of 538 members of Congress) in the Bipartisan Index from Georgetown University’s School of Public Policy.
One example of his ability to work with everyone, for our benefit, is the STOCK Act (Stop Trading on Congressional Knowledge Act) which prohibited members of Congress from using their inside information for personal financial gain. Surprisingly, that bill passed overwhelmingly with bipartisan support and was signed into law.
Another bill enacted into law recently (with almost unanimous votes from both Democrats and Republicans) addressed the mental health concerns of our veterans. Called the Clay Hunt SAV Act, this increases mental health resources for vets and reduces the stigma they may feel, looking for help. He also partnered to allow local doctors to conduct exams for vets, decreasing the VA’s backlog. He says, “You don’t get to pop in on an issue like veterans care…and then pop out…this is a deep dive. You’re in it for the long haul.”
Personally, I admire Tim Walz’s energy, high ethics, and objectivity as he works at the most difficult job imaginable. He certainly deserves our support in every possible way…and our profound thanks for the work he does for our first district.