Tired of the mail? So am I, but I must respond…

Please check back if you don’t see a response on an issue that concerns you, or send an e-mail to jim@jimknoblach.com.

RESPONSES ON WOMEN’S ISSUES

Dorholt direct mail and radio says:

“Knoblach blocked a plan to require hospitals to provide contraception to victims of sexual assault.”

Knoblach Response:

This is misleading.  This was a procedural vote about whether an amendment was germane to the subject of a different bill.  The vote was not about this subject.

“Knoblach voted to allow insurance companies to discriminate against women and deny coverage for the birth control pill.”

Self-insured health plans can already do this under federal law.  States have no power to change federal law. The US Supreme Court ruled companies can do this in the Hobby Lobby case.  This vote was to lower the cost of health insurance for employees of small business by giving them more choices about what benefits they wanted. Insurance companies were still allowed to offer birth control coverage by this vote.

“Knoblach voted to defund Planned Parenthood.”

I voted to re-allocate a few million dollars that Planned Parenthood receives to other federally approved clinics that provide health care to women.  Other clinics which did not provide abortions would have provided this care.  This funding was supposed to help poor and minority groups to improve children’s health so it seemed like organizations other than those that provide abortions should deliver these services.

“Knoblach doesn’t trust women to make their own health care decisions.”

Jim Knoblach is pro-life.  He opposes abortion except in certain extreme circumstances.  Zach Dorholt supports abortion on demand.  That is what this is about.

RESPONSES ON MPPOA ATTACKS

Recently you may have received mail attacking me from a Saint Paul based police union (MPPOA). Over 83% of their endorsed candidates this year are Democrats. The few endorsed Republicans are in relatively uncontested races. Please talk to local police you know if you have questions on this group. I am supported by three other major law enforcement groups – Minnesota Police Fraternal Association, Minnesota State Patrol Troopers Association, and the Police Officers Federation of Minneapolis.

What attack says:

“Knoblach voted against background checks for gun sales”

Knoblach Response:

This vote could have even required a background check if you lent a hunting gun to your nephew for an afternoon. This is unreasonable.

“Knoblach voted to allow convicted abusers to possess pistols and assault rifles”

This vote was about whether to let judges decide on how long to take away someone’s firearms, or just require that abusers lose their firearms for ten years. I felt the judge should have the discretion to set a time period of lower or higher than ten years depending upon the circumstances. Under this vote, the only way I “voted to allow convicted abusers to possess pistols and assault rifles” is if a judge let them keep them.

“Knoblach led the charge last year to cut local government aid (LGA) by $85 million.”

These cuts only affected Saint Paul, Minneapolis, and Duluth. Those cities get more local government aid (LGA) from the state than Saint Cloud on both an absolute and per capita basis. I thought these big cities should receive less aid. Saint Cloud LGA was not cut by this bill.

“A bill to add $20 million to LGA was lost over an error.”

Governor Dayton vetoed this bill, though many felt he could have signed the bill and corrected the error administratively. Dayton could have called the Legislature back in session if he wished to fix this error and increase LGA.

“Legislators are more partisan than ever”

Jim Knoblach was named the most independent Republican in the Minnesota House by the Saint Paul Pioneer Press, which is the source of this quote. His opponent Zach Dorholt voted 470 times out of 470 times for bills passing the DFL controlled Minnesota House in 2013-14. Only one other person did that. Dorholt was one of the most partisan House members ever.

RESPONSES ON EDUCATION ATTACKS

What attack says:

“Knoblach voted to cut school funding by $185 million” on May 22, 2003

Knoblach Response:

Schools still got more money. This vote was to reduce a scheduled increase in funding. Schools still got increased funding, just less of an increase. This reduction in the growth of spending took place to help balance the budget during the 2003 recession. The DFL controlled Minnesota Senate also voted for this.

“Knoblach voted to take another $874 million from education”

The September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks caused a major recession and state budget shortfall in 2003. The DFL controlled Senate and House Republicans responded by temporarily delaying (but not cutting) payments to school districts to balance the budget. They were later paid back under a law authored by Rep. Knoblach.

“Knoblach opposed all-day kindergarten and blocked funding for pre-K”

This vote was to take money from teachers’ merit pay and staff development and use it for these purposes. I didn’t think taking money from teachers was appropriate.

“Knoblach…stopped the tuition freeze at 4-year public colleges…room and board went up 10%”

This is misleading. There never was a freeze on room and board. SCSU chose to raise it. On tuition, the higher ed budget Knoblach supported had more money for tuition relief than the earlier one his opponent Zach Dorholt supported. Needy students who received Pell grants saw no tuition increase in 2016. Tuition was then frozen for 2017 at universities, and actually decreased 1% at two year colleges.

RESPONSES ON HEALTH CARE ATTACKS

Talk about deceptive!  Now the DFL is sending out mailers attacking me for raising health care costs, when it was my opponent Zach Dorholt who voted to scrap the system we had that was working in 2013-14 when he was in office and caused the explosive health care increases we are seeing!

Here are my responses to their latest deceptive advertising:

Dorholt attacks and claims:

Knoblach voted to kick 100,000 Minnesotans off health insurance

Knoblach Response:

FALSE.  This vote was to transfer them to a different existing public insurance plan and provide them with larger tax credits so they could afford it

If elected, Dorholt would be the only actively practicing health professional in the Legislature

FALSE.  There are several other practicing health professionals in the Legislature, such as Senator Jim Abeler, a chiropractor, Rep. Jim Newberger, a paramedic, and Senator Kathy Sheran, a nurse

Knoblach voted for a tax cut for insurance companies

I voted to reduce the premium tax that nonprofit health care providers pay so the savings would pass through to people

Knoblach voted against holding big drug companies accountable

This vote was to set up a new committee to develop a form to require more information about drug company costs, most of which is already required and available from the federal government

Knoblach voted against protecting families from increases in their health insurance premiums and limiting out of pocket costs

This vote was to set up a new committee to develop a form to require more information about drug company costs, most of which is already required and available from the federal government