Hahn says his lack of government experience is an assetby Elizabeth Dunbar, Minnesota Public Radio
St. Paul, Minn. — Independence Party gubernatorial candidate Rob Hahn said Wednesday that his lack of experience in government could be an asset.
"I'm more qualified to lead this state than my other opponents because I don't have all this public policy experience," Hahn told MPR's Morning Edition. "I think we need to get away from that."
Instead, Hahn said throughout his career as a small businessman, publisher and writer he has surrounded himself with great people. He would do the same as governor, he said.
"I don't want to know every single detail about how government works," Hahn said. "I'm not afraid to take direction, but at the same time I have a personality to lead people."
Hahn faces an uphill battle in convincing voters he should be the Independence Party candidate on the ballot in November. He has raised less than $5,000, while rival Tom Horner -- the candidate endorsed by the Independence Party -- has raised nearly $200,000.
The state primary is Tuesday.
"You can't buy a certain type of personality that connects with voters or that inner passion," Hahn said of fundraising, adding that he's relied heavily on volunteers.
As for closing the state's projected $6 billion budget gap, Hahn said Horner and other candidates in the race aren't being specific enough about their plans.
Hahn said his own plan would raise revenue through things like riverboat gambling and a "fat tax" on fast food. He would also cut certain programs and cut the corporate income tax.
"Let's make (Minnesota) much more business friendly," he said.
The other reason Hahn said he is running for governor is to make changes to family law. He said joint custody should be presumed in divorce cases involving children, unless one parent has shown an inability to parent.
"We're creating a much more level playing field," he said. "It's going to eliminate a lot of the potential for contentious legal debates."
(MPR's Cathy Wurzer contributed to this report.)
- Morning Edition, 08/04/2010, 7:40 a.m.