‘Always a strong labor supporter’
Adapted from the Minneapolis Labor Review, October 22, 2022
By Steve Share, Minneapolis Labor Review editor
COON RAPIDS — Jerry Newton has been knocking on lots of doors in his campaign for the new House District 35B. “I’m seeing an unbelievable turnover in population,” he reports. But he needs little introduction to some voters. Over the years, Newton has served on the Coon Rapids city council and Anoka Hennepin school board, won election to three terms in the Minnesota House and, since 2017, served in the Minnesota Senate. Redistricting prompted him to seek the new House District 35B seat, which includes parts of Andover and Coon Rapids.
Newton is running with the endorsement of the Minnesota AFL-CIO and the DFL Party.|
Newton is a highly-decorated U.S. Army veteran who served in the military for 23 years. He has been a leading advocate for veterans’ issues in the legislature.
“There are things I still want to get done on the veterans’ committee,” he says, including directing some of the state surplus to veterans’ housing.
A longtime labor ally, Newton has earned a 98 percent lifetime voting score on working family issues from the Minnesota AFL-CIO.
“I come from a labor family,” Newton says. “I was a laborer, a heavy equipment operator… I’ve done the jobs of labor and I’ve always been a strong supporter of labor… I know labor is what created this country and made it what it is today,” he says.
In campaigning this year, Newton reports, “the question people are talking about is the inability of the legislature to act.” He fears that a new breed of extremist Republicans are unwilling to compromise to pass needed legislation. “It will be much harder to negotiate and move legislation through both houses.”
“My real concern is taking care of constituents and being able to help them navigate a government that often seems very confusing,” Newton says.|