October 23, 2018
Minnesota needs an Attorney General who stands with people, and tackles out-of-control corporate power that is hurting our communities
We want to share with you why Keith Ellison will be a Minnesota Attorney General who will work closely alongside of us to move our values of stewardship and our vision for rural Minnesota forward. We believe he deserves our support, and we encourage you to vote for him on November 6.
Land Stewardship Action Fund members have met with Keith on our farms and in our rural communities to talk about the struggles facing rural communities and family farmers, and how he, as Attorney General, can address them. We appreciate Keith’s energy and commitment — he makes time to meet, he listens, and he acts.
Keith sought out Land Stewardship leaders to shape his priorities as a candidate for Attorney General. We have had three excellent meetings with Keith since July:
• At the Mosel farm in Holdingford in Stearns County, Keith toured the farm with 16 of us. We talked about how sweetheart deals for the very largest dairy farms are hurting independent producers, and how corporate control over agriculture, health care, and nearly our whole economy has gone unchecked.
• At the Nelson dairy farm in Altura in Winona County, Keith sat down with 11 of us at the kitchen table. We shared stories of how limited access and expensive health care is hurting us and our communities, while insurance corporations continue to make staggering profits.
• At the Land Stewardship Action Fund Leadership Assembly in St. Peter on October 7, Keith met with 130 Land Stewardship leaders from across Minnesota. He shared how, as Attorney General, he will work for rural communities and work closely with us. He responded to questions, and he saw eye-to-eye with the people in the room. Like us, he knows corporate control of the economy and our democracy is a challenge that must be confronted head on. As the people’s attorney, he pledged to do that with us.
Keith listened and he acted. He has laid out a plan for addressing the pressing issues we raised in our meetings in his “Family Farm Protection Plan.”
We have enclosed Keith’s “Family Farm Protection Plan.” Read it and you’ll see the values we believe in, put into a bold, clear, proactive plan for rural Minnesota. An Attorney General who created this plan and who is committed to acting on it is good for Minnesota.
We have taken seriously the allegations directed at Keith by a former girlfriend. We’ve had many conversations to understand the situation and discern our action. We have watched for more information to emerge, and seen the investigations into the claims against Keith find them unsubstantiated. We have watched Keith and his family respond to the situation with integrity in the face of ongoing attacks. Based on consideration of these factors and our careful process, we stand with Keith. We did not make this decision lightly because it is important for women to be heard and taken seriously. We discussed this with Keith and called on him, as a candidate for Minnesota Attorney General, to acknowledge the reality and harm of gender oppression and lay out how he will work to address it. He has committed to do this.
Keith Ellison will be an Attorney General who works in partnership with us, works for the people, and stands up to corporate interests.
We know Keith will do this because he has been a strong ally over the years — fighting for local control when he was at the state legislature, standing up to corporate giants like Syngenta while in Congress, and advocating major reforms in the health care system that help people get the care they need, not just insurance corporations getting the money they demand. Keith has always worked to build the power of people’s organizations. He knows that winning real change is about building a larger movement and making sure the voices of regular people are at the center of decision-making.
Keith Ellison will be an Attorney General who goes to bat for regular Minnesotans. He will oppose the out-of-control corporate power of insurance and drug companies, seed and chemical conglomerates, food processors and more that are harming rural communities and all Minnesotans.
We ask you to join us in standing with Keith, and to do these two things:
• Vote for Keith Ellison on Tuesday, November 6 so that Minnesota gets an Attorney General who shares our values and will fight for our priorities.
• Spread the word about Keith to your friends and neighbors and share your support for Keith on social media. You are the best messenger for Keith with the people you know.
Land Stewardship Action Fund board members,
Sheep Sorrel Farm
This is an independent expenditure prepared and paid for by Land Stewardship Action Fund, 821 E 35th St., #200, Minneapolis, MN
55407. It is not coordinated with or approved by any candidate nor is any candidate responsible for it.
August 9, 2018
Keith Ellison Releases “Family Farm Protection Plan”
to Restore Fairness in Farming as Attorney General
Congressman Ellison announces plan to make health care more affordable and accessible;
enforce laws to break up corporate power in agriculture; and protect the rights of farmers throughout
Minnesota Ellison reiterates plans to host regular meetings throughout the state as Attorney General,
to hear challenges and solutions firsthand from Minnesota communities
MINNESOTA – Congressman Keith Ellison today announced his “Family Farm Protection Plan” to restore fairness in farming as Attorney General. Congressman Ellison’s plan would make health care more affordable and accessible for Minnesota farmers; enforce laws to break up corporate influence in agriculture, put power back in the hands of family farmers; and protect the rights of farmers throughout the state.
“Minnesota’s family farmers work hard, and they deserve a level playing field and a fair shot to get ahead,” said Congressman Ellison. “As Attorney General, I will put the needs of family farmers ahead of corporate special interests, to ensure more affordable health care and a better agricultural economy for farmers throughout our state.”
Agricultural concentration has increased pressures on Minnesota farmers as both buyers and sellers – limiting the options farmers have in what they produce and how, and restricting options for who farmers can sell their products to, and at what price. These pressures, along with the rising cost and limited access to healthcare, require strong enforcement of Minnesota and federal laws to level the playing field for Minnesota farmers in today’s economy.
In addition to the “Family Farm Protection Plan” released today, Ellison today reiterated his intention to host regular community meetings with Minnesotans throughout the state as Attorney General. Nobody knows better the issues they face and the solutions they need than the people facing challenges in cities and counties across our state.
That is why Ellison will ensure the Attorney General’s Office has a regular presence throughout Minnesota.
Below, read more about how Ellison’s “Family Farm Protection Plan” would put family farmers first.
KEITH ELLISON’S FAMILY FARM PROTECTION PLAN
Make Health Care More Affordable and Accessible – The cost of healthcare continues to rise, especially for Minnesota farmers who often face limited options on the individual market. As Attorney General, Keith Ellison will work to increase access to more affordable health care for all Minnesotans, including farmers throughout our state.
• Defending the Individual Market and Coverage for Preexisting Conditions – As Attorney General, Keith will fight back against attempts to undermine the Affordable Care Act which would take health care away from thousands of Minnesotans, including many who buy insurance on the individual market. Keith will also fight to protect coverage for preexisting conditions, so the health insurance companies can’t deny you coverage or charge you more for a prior injury on the job, or a condition like asthma or diabetes.
• Rural Health Access Equity – Even when Minnesota farmers and rural residents can afford health care, access to good doctors and facilities is often limited, leading many to skip treatment rather than give up a work day to travel hours to the nearest hospital or clinic. As Attorney General, Keith Ellison will leverage antitrust law to ensure large health care providers are meeting their obligation to serve all Minnesota communities.
• Prescription Price Gouging and the Opioid Epidemic – As Attorney General, Keith Ellison will crack down on pharmaceutical companies who unfairly drive up the cost of prescription medication. Ensuring generic drugs are priced fairly will make health care more affordable for all Minnesotans. Keith will also hold pharmaceutical companies accountable for the deceptive and aggressive marketing practices that have fueled the opioid crisis across Minnesota, to get essential resources to those affected.
Enforce the Law to Make the Agricultural Economy More Fair – In recent years, corporate consolidation in agriculture has made it harder for family farmers to get ahead, squeezing farmers in the middle as massive corporations extend their influence on government policy and reap further profits. As Attorney General, Keith Ellison will enforce the law to make Minnesota’s agricultural economy more fair for family farmers.
• Fighting Agricultural Monopolies through Antitrust Law – Corporate agricultural monopolies have increased pressures on Minnesota farmers as both buyers and sellers – limiting the options farmers have in what they produce and how, and restricting options for who farmers can sell their products to, and at what price. As Attorney General, Keith Ellison will fight against mergers like Bayer-Monsanto that increase corporate power over farmers, and will enforce antitrust law to break-up unfair market concentration. This includes defending and enforcing Minnesota’s corporate farm law.
• Cracking Down on Deceptive Contracting – As corporate influences has increased in agriculture, more and more farming is done through contract, where powerful companies hire family farmers to produce crops or livestock for the company. But given the outsized power these agricultural corporations hold, these contracts can often be misleading and unfair to farmers – leaving farmers underpaid for work they did on contract, often after purchasing thousands of dollars in new equipment or resources. As Attorney General, Keith will make sure agricultural contracts are fair and upfront, and will hold companies accountable that frequently fail to meet their obligations to our farmers
• Ensuring Fairness and Transparency in Market Pricing – A fair economy only works when everyone plays by the same rules. But when only a few big corporations are buying agricultural products, farmers are left to accept the prices they offer. This problem can hit Minnesota’s dairy farmers especially hard. As Attorney General, Keith will ensure greater transparency in market pricing for farm products, and will crack down on offenders of price fixing or bid rigging, to ensure a level playing field for family farmers.
Stand with Family Farmers – For too long, massive agricultural companies have used their power to influence government policy and keep the deck stacked in their favor. As Attorney General, Keith will advocate for and enforce laws that put power back in the hands of Minnesota farmers and rural residents.
• Protecting Local Control – When big agricultural businesses use their power to push state and local policies that favor their interests over family farms, rural residents can organize and push back through local organizing, working with their county and city governments, and in their communities. As Attorney General, Keith will ensure rural residents do not lose their voice to the interests of powerful corporations.
• Defending the Right to Organize and Collectively Bargain – With the power of big agricultural businesses stronger than ever, Minnesota farmers can stand up and push back by banding together to negotiate for better prices when buying and selling. As Attorney General, Keith Ellison will defend the rights of Minnesota farmers to organize and collectively bargain for better contracts and better prices, to make our agricultural economy more fair.
• Holding Companies Accountable for Unsafe Products – When agricultural companies consolidate, farmers can be left with few options for seeds, pesticides and other farm products, even if those products may be unsafe. When corporations use their monopoly power to push products they know endanger farmers and farm workers, Keith Ellison will use the Attorney General’s power to sue those companies and do right by affected Minnesotans.