To the Editor, 

My Independent petition to qualify for the Seventh District congressional ballot in November was close, but we didn’t make it. I received 924 signatures in the two-week signing period. 1,000 were required. That’s my fault. If I had talked with 100 more people, then we would have. The people who signed and then volunteered to show the petition to their friends and families were truly wonderful.

Voters from as far south as Arlington (Sibley County), north as Red Lake Falls (Red Lake), west as Moorhead (Clay) and east as Little Falls (Morrison) signed the petition. Since it was not presented to the Secretary of State, the signed petition has been shredded to protect everyone’s personal information.

Here’s what we talked about: Bipartisanship, no “majority party mandates,” no governing by the Far Left or the Hard Right. We want stability that can only be attained through consensus, moving toward the middle. Until 2020, we had a representative who did that. Our current congresswoman has given us four years of Hard Right zeal. No bipartisan legislation on the southern border in two years, four years, 10? Our lawmakers are grown-ups who need to do their jobs or lose their jobs. This is not lifetime employment.

We also talked about why elections are secure and what caused us to be misled. We talked about abortion, inflation and the role that large corporations play in rising prices. We talked about insurance and healthcare costs. We talked about the Farm Bill, Ukraine and Israel.

Most of all, people want good information and effective lawmakers. Today, we have spin, and drama, and whining, and complaining.  There are good information sources that should be easier for every citizen to get. That helps us become better voters.

If an ordinary, moderate, 64-year-old lady with good ideas can interest this many voters, then it shows that people want something more than candidates from the two parties. Think of this year not as a failure, but as an experiment to learn how it can be done. I see future ballots where three or more good candidates will be normal. Stay tuned.

Teresa Muckala

New York Mills