Ben Carollo | Why I am Running

When leadership is unimaginative and relies on band-aid solutions, working people feel it in their daily lives. My mother felt it when she had to avoid a raise to keep me and my 5 brothers in the free lunch program or risk falling behind on bills. Any time a family fails to fit the mold they risk finding themselves falling through the cracks in patchwork solutions. As a veteran who grew up in a poor and unstable household, I hold within me both a deep patriotism and the knowledge of the problems we face. I believe that we need to be forward-thinking and act with a sense of urgency, for every day that goes by is a day that families all over our state go without the opportunity promised to them.

We have a need for action on affordable housing. Our taxation system is structured in such a way that incentivizes increases in the cost of living year over year, creating tremendous wealth for a select few, while leaving the rest of the state behind. Our banking and financial systems are structured to extract even more interest and fees from working people, lining the pockets of the very people who crashed our economy just a decade ago.

We have a need for action in our justice system. Without needed public defenders and judges our court system will continue to be bogged down, exacting a tremendous toll on those who cannot afford their own representation. Without serious refocusing, we will continue to criminalize our youth and fail to effectively squash human trafficking and cybercrime.

We have a need for action in our public infrastructure and defense. The problem of hacking our infrastructure needs to be addressed yesterday, and safeguards must be put in place. The lack of regulatory safeguards in biotechnology exposes ourselves to the risk of low budget bioterrorism with devastating consequences for vulnerable populations. Without funding maintenance projects on our dams and bridges, they will surely fail and leave us as devastated as we were during the tragic 35W collapse.

These are solvable problems, but real solutions to these problems require the boldness to step outside of partisan molds. Real solutions require the courage to bring new ideas to the table, rather than cower in fear that such an idea might be challenged. Real solutions require the desire for truth, the invitation of criticism, and the involvement of the community. This is why I am running, to put a spotlight on the difficult realities of good governance, and to build consensus around the shared vision of a Minnesota that works for all of us.

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