Ready to Protect on Day One
Deep down, I have a strong passion to help people, make our world a better place, advocate for social justice, take care of Minnesotans, our seniors and most vulnerable, and empower individuals to achieve success and opportunity.
I’ve campaigned across Minnesota as the strongest, most experienced statewide DFL candidate for attorney general. I’m “Ready to Protect” all Minnesotans!
The Most Experience as Minnesota’s Watchdog
For over seven years, I served as Minnesota’s Commerce Commissioner, the state’s consumer protection watchdog, overseeing 330+ employees and more than 20 industries, including banking, insurance, real estate, and the energy sector.
My first task as commissioner was to revamp the agency and make consumer protection the top priority. Prior to my arrival, my republican predecessor had gutted the consumer protection functions of the agency. Under my leadership, consumer actions rose by 500%. I expanded the Enforcement Division and transformed the Commerce Fraud Bureau into our state’s premier white-collar crime force.
I am proud of my achievements at the Commerce Department. Under my leadership, the agency saved consumers more than one billion dollars. We stopped mortgage fraud, predatory lending and numerous financial scams, and we put criminals and con artists behind bars.
Both AARP and the Better Business Bureau have commended my efforts in transforming Commerce into the top watchdog agency in the state.
Protecting Seniors from Abuse and Exploitation
Preventing elder abuse will be one of my top priorities as Attorney General.
Seniors control about 70% of the nation’s wealth and scam artists know it. It’s easier to exploit a senior citizen with cognitive impairments than it is to rob a bank. Seniors do not have the luxury of time to recoup their losses, so catching and stopping fraud early on can make the difference between having enough money to live on or not.
As Commerce Commissioner and as the President of the North American Securities Administrators Association, I spearheaded many initiatives to protect seniors from financial abuse and exploitation.
From lottery scams to ponzi schemes to online attacks directed at seniors, I took quick action to shut them down. By working with banks, financial institutions, and outreach programs that educate seniors and eldercare workers, I made it easier for Minnesotans to spot and stop senior fraud.
Fighting Opioids and Overpriced Drugs
On day one as AG, I will take immediate action to hold opioid companies accountable for their deceitful marketing practices.
Like most Minnesotans, I was stunned by Prince’s death and shocked to learn that it was from an opioid overdose. Over 30,000 people die each year from opioids and thousands more suffer from addiction. It’s time to make big pharmaceutical companies accountable for their brazen, deceptive and damaging practices.
I will also take action against outrageously priced drugs. I’ll work hard to bring down prices that are destroying patients and their families. Minnesotans should not have to choose between their medicine and food or rent.
Conserving our Beautiful Lakes
When I began as Commerce Commissioner in 2011, I set out on a statewide tour to learn more about our renewable energy resources. My aim was to meet with our state’s leaders and innovators in the clean energy sector so that I could better help transition our state from traditional fossil fuels to cleaner forms of energy like solar, wind and biodiesel fuel. During my tenure, clean energy use tripled while coal dependency dropped by a third. Employment in the renewable energy sector surged 80%, creating 57,000 new jobs.
It is my strong belief that Trump’s withdrawal from the Paris Agreement on climate change puts us all at risk. It is crucial that states do their part, and one key way is through the attorney general’s office. I will challenge Trump’s ongoing efforts to delay or rollback measures that reduce greenhouse gases; that undermine our clean air and drinking water; that endanger our wildlife, pollute our communities, or threaten our beautiful lakes.
Supporting Rural Minnesota Communities
I grew up in Chaska, Minnesota, surrounded by cornfields. I know first hand that our rural communities are the backbone of our state.
As Commerce Commissioner, I protected our state farm-to-farm, town-to-town, during major floods, tornadoes, propane shortages, and moments of crisis.
As attorney general, I will help farmers and rural communities stay healthy and strong. I will continue to promote the use of clean biofuel made from Minnesota-grown corn, keep propane fuel affordable for homes and farms, and ensure that Minnesota farmers get a fair shake in the marketplace.
Fighting for Working Families
My wife and I both come from strong union families. My mother was a teacher and union leader, while my wife is a long-time member of the musicians’ union. Her father was a strong union advocate and lawyer, and her grandfather was a key labor leader in the ‘30s and ‘40s.
My mom taught me early on about the importance of fighting for workers’ rights. I led my first strike when I was eighteen years old to help our teachers.
As attorney general, I will fight to protect Minnesota’s workers and their collective bargaining rights. I will prosecute wage and benefit theft. I will safeguard pensions and workplace safety. I will protect workers from all forms of discrimination, including age, race, religion, disability, gender and sexual orientation. I will join litigation that helps Labor at the national level, including NLRB actions.
Standing Up Against Trump’s Unlawful Actions
I will defend Minnesotans against any Trump administration action that breaks the law or violates the constitution. As Commerce Commissioner, I joined the legal effort to challenge the immigration travel ban, the defunding of vital health care markets and the abandonment of our nation’s clean energy standards. I will bring tough lawsuits that are necessary and reasonable to protect Minnesota’s people and interests. My focus will always be with Minnesotans first.