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Entenza hits Austin

Nearly a week after the DFL announced its endorsement of House Speaker Margaret Anderson Kelliher, Matt Entenza is finishing a statewide tour for his campaign for governor.

The fact that he doesn't have the party's official endorsement doesn't bother him at all.

"The last time a DFL-endorsed candidate won an open seat was 40 years ago," he said at Coffee House on Main in Austin during a stop that attracted about 10 people. "The DFL endorsement hasn't produced a governor in a long time. The last DFL governor was 20 years ago."

That's part of the message Entenza has sought to spread across the state. He's been to Mankato, Rochester, Duluth, Bemidji, East Grand Forks and Winona as well as parts of the Minneapolis-St. Paul area on his campaign. He came through Austin on Thursday afternoon and finished the day in Albert Lea.

"It was clear that the way to win the primary is to focus on the primary," he said.


Entenza, a former state representative, doesn't believe that a ballot that has three DFL candidates for governor detracts from his campaign. Republicans are picking their gubernatorial candidate today.

"Attention is focused on the Democrats, and they're going to unite on Aug. 10, when the primary is done," he said, noting that the vote, which will take place in 103 days, will be the first August primary in the state's history.

Entenza is confident he will win the gubernatorial election.

The former House minority leader spent most of his time in Austin touting his message to voters.

He said he plans to grow jobs and get the clean-energy economy going by building wind turbines  and developing solar energy and ethanol.

Entenza also wants to refocus schools and eliminate No Child Left Behind, as well some of the testing that schools have to undergo. He said he thinks Minnesota has slipped from being a state known for education to one that is just average.

Entenza also wants to take on special interests and end bailouts to banks and credit card companies.

He said he also wants to be the kind of governor who travels frequently.


"Instead of sitting in St. Paul, I'm going to be sitting in coffee shops on main streets," Entenza said.

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