Murphy taking ‘common sense’ approach to gun violence

MARSHALL — Citing her life experience, knowledge and ambition, DFL-endorsed candidate Erin Murphy sincerely believes she has what it takes to be the first female governor of Minnesota. Working as a nurse practitioner — she was part of a surgical transplant team — taught her perseverance.

“You don’t get to walk away from a tough patient,” said Murphy, who was visiting Marshall on Tuesday. “Nursing teaches you that. You can’t walk away from a tough issue either. This is no time for a tippy-toe kind of politics. I recognize that we have some tough issues in front of us, but we have the power to take them on together, and we should. I want to do that as the next governor of the state.”

While she is personally passionate about politics, Murphy is quick to acknowledge that all Minnesota voices matter. She learned that while serving in the Minnesota House the past 12 years.

“When I think about the tough issues we face, we have to put Minnesotans’ interests first,” she said. “We need to build our future together. “Over the last 12 years, the people in the state have taught me that we do care about each other. We will stand up for our communities and fight for them, so I’m going to be the governor who stands with the people and fights for our communities all across the state of Minnesota.”

Gun violence prevention is one of the country’s most-debated issues. Murphy said she wholeheartedly supports the second amendment, but she also believes there is a common-sense approach to purchasing, owning and selling weapons.

“There’s something really powerful and a little unusual about this election in that Minnesotans, since the 2016 race, have been organizing — first resisting and marching and then organizing and forming groups — all over the state,” Murphy said. “And it’s women, rural progressives, Native people, people of color and young people.”

Murphy said the voices of young people in Minnesota and across the nation are loud and are being heard.

“Young people in particular are pushing hard,” she said. “They want student debt relief, they want climate change relief and they want gun violence prevention. They’re demanding action on that.”

As a result, Murphy said she stands with “the people who have a real appetite for change.”

“I think we, together as Minnesotans, support this in strong numbers and can move forward with background checks — no excuses and no exceptions — with red flag laws that protect people if they’re a danger to themselves or others. There’s also strong support for banning the future sales of assault-style weapons and high-capacity magazines here in the state.”

According to Murphy, the real issue is that the National Rifle Association (NRA) is “being too powerfully seated behind the scenes in stopping any progress that Minnesotans want to make.” Supporting background checks and other initiatives in the effort to decrease gun violence in no way means people are coming for your guns, Murphy said. Ignoring gun violence is not the responsible course of action, she said, especially when the number of school shootings and suicides by gun are skyrocketing.

“I support our culture of sport and hunt here in the state of Minnesota,” Murphy said. “I have been deer hunting and my husband is a deer hunter. I also come from a family that hunts and fishes. I love to fish even more than I like to hunt. We can do that. We can respect the second amendment and we can make sure our kids are safe in school and our loved ones are safe from violence. That’s my aim and I think that’s where Minnesotans are at and they support that.”

Murphy said it’s about making sure people who shouldn’t have access to a gun don’t have access to a gun as well as doing more to prevent violence in general.

“We have to get around the hard edges that have been developed in people who have heard for too many years that to talk about preventing gun violence means taking away your guns because it doesn’t mean that,” she said.

Preserving Minnesota’s agricultural economy is another important issue for Murphy.

“I’m pretty concerned about the tariffs and trade war and the impact on, not just our ag industry, but our farmers — their family situations and their economic well-being,” Murphy said. “So we’ll work with our congressional delegation when I’m elected to put the brakes on this president because I know that when we lose access to significant markets, especially China, it’s going to cause a real problem for this part of the state and really, all over the state.”

Murphy said recent financial aid for farmers who are feeling the pain of the escalating trade war may not even make its way into Minnesota, making the situation look even more bleak.

“While the president has issued this idea of $12 billion in aid, I know that farmers — those I’ve talked to over my 12 years — would much prefer to have a healthy market that they can sell their goods at than a handout from the federal government,” she said.

Murphy said she also believes Minnesotans are ready to work toward a path of single-payer healthcare.

“It’s time,” she said. “We led the nation 26 years ago when we passed MinnesotaCare, and I was an organizer for the Minnesota Nurses Association (MNA) when we did that. And we can lead the nation again, by opening up MinnesotaCare for anybody who wants to buy a contract directly with the providers, use the power of purchasing to get a better deal on prescription drug costs for the people in the state and get ourselves on the path to the Minnesota health plan and move forward here so people can have healthcare they can count on.”