Posted at 11:41 AM on January 25, 2007
by Tom Scheck
DFL Representative Joe Atkins of Inver Grove Heights says he's thinking about running for the U.S. Senate in 2008. Atkins was first elected to the Minnesota House in 2002. He was also mayor of Inver Grove Heights from 1993 through 2002. Atkins says he's talking to state lawmakers and folks outside of the Legislature about a possible run. He is known to be a pretty good fundraiser. He was the treasurer of the House DFL Caucus in the most recent election.
Atkins says he's thinking about running because he wants to put Washington DC on an "Atkins diet. Which means less war and more focus on prescription drugs and affordable health care."
When asked about Al Franken's candidacy, Atkins said "I have a great deal respect for him. I think he's a funny guy."
Atkins says he'll make his decision after the legislative session.
Franken and Atkins are two of the DFL names being discussed as potential challengers to GOP Senator Norm Coleman in 2008. Democrats in Washington D.C. are targeting Coleman.
This is great news!! I couldn't think of a better candidate to represent the state. His record shows he's willing to work with anybody to move things in the right direction.
It would be really nice if candidates and their supporters would try a little harder to craft posts that weren't so obviously fabricated to follow a float of candidacy.
Atkins is well-known in the DFL House caucus as a highly ambitious self-promoting state rep who will place his own interests above his party's. During his race for majority leader last year, he threatened to stop raising money for the caucus if he was not elected (a threat which he has honored, by the way). Meanwhile, he has amped up his self-promotional machinery by introducing an promoting a jingoistic race-baiting anti-foreign call center bill that will accomplish little, legally, but assures him of a reputation as someone willing to stand up to third world workers.
Good news, Anthony (or Joe?). Hardly. Atkins is a divisive selfish politician of the sort that - presumably - most Minnesotans are tired of finding on their ballots. Think: Mike Hatch.