To the editor:

Jim Hagedorn deserves scorn for embracing a demagogue over the unity of the country and his oath to protect and defend the Constitution. His objection on Jan. 6, 2021, to Arizona’s presidential electoral results after the Capitol had been attacked by insurrectionists and blood had been splattered on the Capitol’s hallowed grounds is unconscionable and shows he is nothing more than a yes-man putting political stunts over the well being of the country. We deserve better.

After running three times for Congress before being elected in 2018, Hagedorn was finally successful in continuing the family business of politics. Ironically, Trump campaigned on “draining the swamp,” but the 1st Congressional District elected the consummate swamp creature, no doubt in part based on Hagedorn’s father’s reputation as a former Congressman from Minnesota.

Although Hagedorn likes to portray himself as a farmer, his professional experience screams “the swamp”, serving as an aide to Minnesota Representative Arlan Stangeland and later in various Executive Branch Legislative affairs jobs, up until he started running for Congress professionally beginning in 2010.

In 2020, Hagedorn fired his Congressional office chief of staff for mismanaging his office’s constituent mail operation. Anyone who has worked on Capitol Hill knows that House personal office staffs are small and thus Hagedorn claiming ignorance of these unseemly activities shows he is at best an incompetent manager.

Married to Jennifer Carnahan, the current chairwoman of the Minnesota Republican Party, Hagedorn and Carnahan are probably considered Republican Party “royalty.” She oversaw the current iteration of the Minnesota Republican Party’s election efforts, which ran one of the most ineffective political ads in recent memory. The advertisement showed Senate candidate Jason Lewis thinking he was either Starsky or Hutch as he chambered a round in a pistol spun, and then fired at a stationary target. The voters who liked that ad were already likely to vote Republican. The ad did nothing to attract new voters or offer competing policy ideas.

Hagedorn won reelection in November 2020. Constitutionally, there is no recourse to recall him and history shows that it is difficult to unseat a Representative once reelected after their freshman term. However, my fellow Minnesotans deserve a Representative who puts the well-being of the country first and fulfills his sworn oath to defend the Constitution over any partisan political stunts preordained to fail. On Jan. 6, Hagedorn failed this obligation – even after blood had been spilled in the Capitol – and for that he deserves our scorn.

David Sauer


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