Elections matter: Your participation is important
September 9, 2022 | Geno Fragnito
Summer has drawn to a close. The Minnesota State Fair is in the past and kids are back in school. This means one thing: Election season is in full swing.
This year’s election has an election dynamic that happens only once every 20 years. After redistricting this year, there are elections in all 201 legislative districts (representatives and senators) and all statewide offices (governor, attorney general, secretary of state and state auditor) are also on the ballot in November.
You may despise the continuous advertising and the never-ending stream of post cards that fill your mailboxes until November, but you should take the time to learn more about the candidates running for office.
It’s expected there could be as many as 80 new legislators sworn into office in January. That’s about one-third of the Legislature. These individuals will shape the regulations you, your businesses and your clients must follow. Getting to know them and more about the candidates’ positions will allow to make an informed decision when casting your vote.
Candidates will spend the next many weeks meeting with residents of their districts, holding town hall meetings and making a case for why their position is the best to lead Minnesota toward continued and future prosperity.
Now is the time for you to let candidates know what issues are important to you, your business and the clients you represent. Many candidates have good websites where you can find information about them personally and the positions they support; they also want to hear from you a learn what is important to the people they will represent.
Minnesota often leads the nation in general election voter turnout and many legislative races will be very close. Participation matters and one vote could change not only the winner of an election but possibly determine which party will be the majority party in the Minnesota House and Senate.
Some districts that may not have been competitive the last election cycle could change to very competitive races with the new district lines. A couple recent elections were decided by 30 and 41 votes, respectively. That’s a very small margin of victory with thousands of votes cast.
Now it the time to invite your local candidates to meet for coffee, come in for a visit to your office or a client or set up a virtual meeting. Collectively, CPAs make a difference and can shape public policy. We saw this last session with several MNCPA members helping legislators better understand key pieces of legislation, including four items that would have been included in the proposed tax bill (which, ultimately, and unfortunately, never made it to a vote). Start now with building those relationships with current and future policymakers so you can be a trusted resource to them when they’re in office.
Topics: Legislative & Government Affairs, Taxation-Individual, Government, Taxation-Business
Geno Fragnito is the MNCPA government relations director, advocating on behalf of the CPA profession. His days consist of last-minute meeting changes, building relationships with lawmakers, helping CPAs navigate state government, and putting in more than 15,000 steps per day walking the halls of the Capitol. Geno unwinds with a little golf and traveling with his family. If he weren’t a lobbyist, Geno would perfect his cast and be a professional fisherman. Geno can be reached at 952-885-5550 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
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