Newly Political Nurse Now Permanently Active

Newly Political Nurse Now Permanently Active

By Julie Anderson, RN

Julie Anderson, RN
Governmental Affairs Commissioner

Governmental Affairs Commissioner

 

There is a lot at stake in the upcoming midterm elections. Like many other nurses, I was excited to find out that a fellow nurse and an inspiring leader, Erin Murphy, was running for governor. I thrusted myself into the campaign and volunteered with the Nurses for Erin campaign. I did phonebanks, door knocks, attended meetings, had face to face interactions, attended the DFL convention as a delegate, and, of course, I voted for Erin for Minnesota governor in the primaries. After the primary went the other way without Erin Murphy representing the DFL on the ballot, I suddenly found myself asking “what now?” I realized, though, that my work was far from over.

 

There are still many candidates seeking election or re-election in November who have proven to be champions of nurse values. These candidates were screened directly by MNA members to ensure they will help us advance issues at the state Capitol. They pledged to support our patients and our profession by standing up for solutions for short staffing, healthcare reform, and workplace violence prevention. We also need to elect candidates who will defend MNA against anti-union attacks, such as the nurse compact and the so-called “right to work” legislation. MNA nurses endorsed Tim Walz for Governor for these very reasons. He will work with us and for all of us, which is why we all need to vote for him and Peggy Flanagan for Lieutenant Governor in November.

 

Still, we can’t stop at voting. As a Governmental Affairs Commissioner at MNA, I have gone with fellow nurses and staff to the Capitol to personally reach out to legislators. This is the best time to speak our hearts regarding issues that we feel deeply. I was happy to make some allies in the Capitol who represented and supported nurses with their votes on legislation we discussed, and I’m happy to support those I am able to with my vote in November. We cannot win elections or pass legislation in a vacuum—we need every nurse to get involved in the democratic process. In a democracy, majority rules, and we know the majority of people respect and listen to nurses.

 

According to the annual Gallup poll, nurses continue to be the most trusted profession and have proven time and time again to have a tremendous voice at the Capitol. We need to take that powerful voice to every voting booth across the state of Minnesota this fall because “Nurses Care, and We Vote.”

 

3 Comments

  1. Please remember that part of why remain #1 trusted is because we are not seen as a political body, rather a body of individuals that care for people at there darkest hours. I am staying a paying member right now to see if you back off your political bullshit of supporting only liberals and socialists because they are what the few top MNAleaders think. Please understand that there are many members that believe in conservative, free market values and these shoul be considered when you are supporting political figures. Remember, you are representing a lar*3 group of professionals not just your communist ideals. Thank you

  2. Thank you for your comment Bill. I agree that MNA should not be supporting one political party or one political goal. I consider myself more “liberal” than “conservative” but I too have plenty of conservative values. It may seem at times that MNA is pushing a liberal agenda, but that is just not true. MNA members (nurses) are involved in vetting any candidates seeking our endorsement and they get that endorsement by supporting things that are important to nurses and to their patients safety. We are held to a high standard and we should be holding our political leaders to a high standard as well. Democrat or Republican, they should be working for us, for our patients, for the people. I’ve found that the only way for me to truly have a stake in what happens politically as a nurse or as a citizen, is to get involved. And it’s the same with the union. If I want them to represent me, I can’t sit back and wait, I got involved.

  3. It’s important that we as MNA members, and citizens, recognize that WE ARE the government as much as we are the union, whose constituents are of and for “the people.”

    MNA is about supporting POLICIES not politics. Candidates are merely conduits for our values and initiatives.

    We are stronger united. Our union welcomes the support of candidates of every political persuasion who supports our mission. I recommend that every member reach out to their representatives and encourage them to participate in candidate screenings and our legislative work, so we all will feel represented.

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