Small Business Owners Support Lewis’ Call To Reopen Minnesota for Business

Small Business Owners Support Lewis’ Call To Reopen Minnesota for Business

March 27, 2020

WOODBURY, Minn. — U.S. Senate candidate Jason Lewis released the following statement as small business owners come out in support of his call to reopen Minnesota for business:

“I have been talking with small business owners across the state of Minnesota and they are all telling me the same thing: it’s time to go back to work,” Lewis said. “I grew up working in a family business and it would have been absolutely devastating to our employees if our revenue collapsed due to a top down government edict. Not all states are handling it this way. There is growing concern that the longer Minnesota stays shuttered, the harder it will be for some of these businesses to be able to bounce back. We need to pivot to the second phase of handling this virus where we start gradually re-opening the economy for folks who wish to return to work, while the most vulnerable among us continue to self isolate. We need to be responsible, use best practices, and protect the vulnerable. But we cannot destroy Minnesota and the country in the process of fighting this virus. Simply put, the cure cannot be worse than the disease.”

Statements from small business owners:

“My wife and I own and operate a small business, more specifically a dance studio. Our business serves almost 500 kids in the Maple Grove area. Since the forced closure of businesses by Governor Walz, we have effectively been shut down. Many of our families are canceling and not planning on attending our virtual classrooms, seriously hurting our business. As of now, and for as long as we can, we will be paying our almost 20 employees, however we can only continue for so long without bringing in income. We can’t keep operating like this indefinitely. Minnesotans who are willing and able should be allowed to go back to work while still going above and beyond to protect the vulnerable.” Alex Huffman, The Dance Complex in Maple Grove

“I am a second-generation concrete and masonry contractor, and this shutdown puts my family business in a very difficult situation. I don’t know if I’ll be able to get the supplies needed for my job, or whether people will even be able to afford to go forward with the projects they’ve already put down payments on. Just like every other small business owner, I have bills to pay and commitments to keep. I’m not fearful—we’ve always managed to get by in times of difficulty. But I do worry that if we prolong this, it could take years to recover. We need to get back to work. If you’re older or have underlying health conditions that makes you more vulnerable, stay home. But the young and healthy should be allowed to go back to their jobs.” Jon Dietrich, Hardline Concrete & Masonry in Inver Grove Heights

“This forced closure of restaurant and bars has been devastating for my family run business. We have had to lay off 12 employees. These are single moms and single dads. It is absolutely heart wrenching. If politicians and members of the media had to walk a day in our shoes, I think they would have a whole different outlook. Of course small business owners are concerned about this virus. But we’re also concerned about the ramifications of shuttering businesses for weeks on end. A lot of small businesses aren’t going to make it. We should be able to save lives while also saving small businesses. We need to find a way to get back to work.” Gidget Bailey, Tin Cups in St. Paul and the Old Clover Inn in Vadnais Heights


Lewis: Open Minnesota For Business

Lewis: Open Minnesota For Business

March 25, 2020

WOODBURY, Minn. — U.S. Senate candidate Jason Lewis released the following statement calling for Minnesota to ease the coronavirus restrictions at the end of the Trump Administration’s “15 Days to Slow the Spread” initiative:

“We are not only victims of a pandemic, we are victims of imperfect information. Epidemiological models—not to mention economic ones—have failed to converge. No one knows when caseloads will peak, but it is becoming increasingly clear that we cannot fight the coronavirus with an economy that is not working. Over the last few days I have talked with senior centers sewing their own masks, manufacturers retooling to make hand sanitizer, and restaurants turning to take-out. They are the best of Minnesota, and thankfully are all doing their part—but they and their workers need relief.

Yesterday, Dr. Birx said, ‘the mortality rate is driven, almost exclusively as we have talked about, by preexisting conditions,’ which, of course, is good and bad news. Vulnerable populations still need protection. Though the 15-day coronavirus guidelines will soon expire, most Minnesotans have already seen substantial reduction to their economic activity (and income) in the last month. While this pause has given us a crucial head start on beating the virus, it cannot go on forever.

Some medical professionals are suggesting it may be counterproductive to continue the business lockdown. In fact, clustering the young and old may have been an ineffective way to fight the contagion. By ‘preferentially protecting the medically frail and those over age 60’ and letting healthy working-age Minnesotans go back to work, we can avoid extending the very real social—and eventually health—costs of a second Great Depression.

Therefore, once the federal government’s 15-day guidelines expire on Monday March 30th, Minnesota should start reopening for business for all but the most vulnerable of its residents. While some states may have to continue their own stricter guidelines, Minnesota’s emergency orders shutting down all schools should end two weeks later on April 13th, deferring those decisions back to local school districts.

Some are unfortunately portraying fighting a virus and getting Americans back to work as a binary choice. It is not–you can’t do one without the other. So let’s get started.”

Read Lewis’ full opinion piece here.


Lewis Responds to Smith’s Vote Blocking COVID-19 Relief Bill

Lewis Responds to Smith’s Vote Blocking COVID-19 Relief Bill

March 24, 2020

WOODBURY, Minn. — U.S. Senate candidate Jason Lewis released the following statement on Senator Tina Smith’s repeated votes to block the coronavirus relief package:

“Senator Tina Smith is gambling with thousands of Americans’ lives. It’s disgusting and it needs to stop today.

At the direction of Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer and Speaker Nancy Pelosi, Tina Smith has been voting to block the coronavirus relief package. Until families and small businesses across Minnesota are put back to work (which must happen as soon as possible), they continue to struggle to get by. But shockingly, obstructionist Senate Democrats are holding up relief based on carbon footprints? It’s egregious and every American should be outraged.

Majority Whip James Clyburn made the Democrats’ intentions perfectly clear when he called the relief package ‘a tremendous opportunity to restructure things to fit our vision.’ Senator Cory Booker said the bill should be used to ‘reform corporate culture.’ To Senate Democrats, this relief bill isn’t about helping Americans who suddenly find themselves struggling financially in the face of this virus. Instead, they see it as a political tool to push their radical agenda, including the Green New Deal. 

Unlike these partisans in Congress, Minnesotans and Americans are united against one common enemy. Doctors and nurses on the front lines are risking their lives and manufacturers are retooling. They badly need our support. Tina Smith must immediately put aside the partisan politics and put the needs of the American people first.”


Lewis Releases Call to Action Amidst Chinese Coronavirus Outbreak

Lewis Releases Call to Action Amidst Chinese Coronavirus Outbreak

March 20, 2020

WOODBURY, Minn. — U.S. Senate candidate Jason Lewis released the following statement on America’s continuing efforts in combating the coronavirus:

“As Americans and Minnesotans face severe, but temporarily warranted, disruptions to our daily lives, it’s important we stick together and adopt best practices. Guidelines are in place to halt the spread of the virus and protect the most vulnerable among us. I intend to follow them as you should. 

I laud the Trump administration’s efforts in fighting the Chinese virus as well as the bipartisan approach of some of our nation’s governors on the front lines. I would also urge us, as a great nation putting the interests of its own citizens first, to do the following: 

Adopt an Economic Buffer 

The government has been forced to shut down the economy. Though necessary, there is also a responsibility to help those who are negatively affected. That means, among other things, getting families through the next few months with readily available emergency care, penalty-free withdrawals from retirement accounts, and early tax rebates and filing delay. The federal government must avoid a liquidity crunch for cash strapped businesses by immediately opening direct lines of credit. This could be directed through the Small Business Administration, the Treasury, or even the Federal Reserve itself. Ultimately, the best way to fix the economy is to beat the virus. But no corporate ‘bailout’ funds should be available for share-buybacks or bonuses.

Expand ‘Right to Try’ 

As a cosponsor of the first successful law reducing regulations for the terminally ill, I have been a steady advocate for reducing regulations and giving patients more control over their health. We must focus on streamlining the FDA and ridding the medical bureaucratic red tape for all patients—particularly with regard to new and existing off-label drugs and therapies is already showing promise. Innovations like telehealth—which I discussed in-depth, including HIPPA restrictions, in a January Sanford Medical roundtable in Luverne—should be rolled out immediately along with redirecting our ‘arsenal of democracy’ towards a medical infrastructure crash program manufacturing test kits, medical supplies, and increasing hospital capacity.   

Buy American, Now. 

This virus has revealed the other side of globalism. We’ve outsourced critical industries like electronics, medical supplies and devices, prescription drugs, and antibiotics to China. We should immediately end the outsourcing of key industries to our adversaries—especially a Communist country so emboldened they’ve already threatened to cut off the U.S. drug supply, plunging America “into the hell of a novel coronavirus epidemic.” Ending this dangerous supply chain dependence starts with Defense Protection Act but should eventually include directives that all federal agencies buy American-made supplies in vital areas affected by a public health or national security crisis. 

Control Human Migration

This virus has migrated across the globe. Thankfully the Administration cut off direct travel to China early, and now it has been extended to other hotspots. We must not only control our northern and southern borders but also reconsidering the cavalier way in which international travel takes place to and from the United States. We are set to endure a weeks-long self-quarantine to help contain just one zoonotic virus. Adopting a practice of enhanced medically screening of all international travelers on a permanent and routine basis amounts to far less inconvenience. We did it for terrorism; it’s now time to do it for the third leading cause of death in the United States, infectious disease. 

No Rationing of Health Care

We cannot tolerate what we’ve witnessed in Italy or other countries. Disturbing reports of health care rationing and even medical officials suggesting they must let people die by evaluating the “presence of comorbidities” is unacceptable in America. This cruel triage is a direct result of scarce medical resources coming from a government-led system that underprices the value of providers. America should end any flirtation with single-payer ‘options’ that a recent Navigant study showed would devastate rural hospitals and clearly lead to rationing of care to our most vulnerable.

Finally, authorities say the novel outbreak started in a live animal market in Wuhan, China. It should accurately be labeled as such. It is hardly ‘xenophobic’ to state the obvious unless you ignore the names of every other international virus. Names that help us identify important aspects to the origins of disease. Some politicians and pundits can’t help themselves—but that is no excuse for the more serious among us for refusing to speak the truth. This is a Chinese virus and we should not be putting political correctness above the health of Minnesotans.”


Lewis Slams Smith & Biden’s Politicization of Coronavirus, Discusses Need for Unity and Further Steps

Lewis Slams Smith & Biden’s Politicization of Coronavirus, Discusses Need for Unity and Further Steps

March 13, 2020

WOODBURY, Minn. — U.S. Senate candidate Jason Lewis released the following statement and accompanying video regarding the coronavirus:

“We as Minnesotans and Americans have faced our challenges over the years, and this new coronavirus certainly qualifies. But we’ve never met a challenge we didn’t overcome. While there will be some disruptions to daily life, it’s not a time for panic. Remember that the measures being put in place are for the greater good: to halt the spread of the virus and protect the most vulnerable among us.

Thankfully the Trump Administration cut off China travel early, and now it has been extended to other hotspots in Europe and beyond, which is a good step. We need a modern-day Marshall Plan to swiftly develop a safe and widely available vaccine for this virus.  Additionally, Republicans and Democrats must join together to suspend payroll taxes and ensure disruptions to our economy are minimal. Continued efforts should be made to ensure reliable test kits are widely available. 

This virus has also revealed the other side of globalism. We’ve outsourced critical industries like our medical supplies, devices, and prescription drugs to China. Even the Department of Defense outsources to China. This has to stop. We need policies to make certain that we’re going to be safe when we need these vital industries most. 

This isn’t a time for baseless, partisan attacks. Whether it’s Joe Biden’s ridiculous claim that the President’s response has been “xenophobic,” or Senator Tina Smith’s repeated, hyper-partisan attacks on the President, it needs to stop and it needs to stop today. In one breath Senator Tina Smith says we shouldn’t point fingers or blame, and in the next breath she launches blistering, personal attacks against the Administration. Enough is enough, Senator. Let’s put aside our differences and work together. Only our nation’s collective cooperation, determination and resolve will ensure this virus is in our rear view mirror as quickly as possible.”

Watch Lewis’ video address here.


Lewis Calls Out Smith On Medicare Public Option

Lewis Calls Out Smith On Medicare Public Option

March 10, 2020

WOODBURY, Minn. — U.S. Senate candidate Jason Lewis released the following statement following Senator Tina Smith’s remarks on healthcare during a Sunday WCCO interview and a recent study showing a public option would put between 25 and 49 rural Minnesota hospitals at risk of closing:

“Senator Tina Smith conveniently left one important piece out of her statement regarding her healthcare stance: it would put as many as 49 rural hospitals across Minnesota out of business and end Medicare as we know it.

It is unfathomable that she thinks this is the way to fix our healthcare system. This is further proof that Tina only listens to the far-left voices in her party – not the Minnesotans she is supposed to serve.

Unlike Tina’s repeated support for a public option, my rural healthcare plan doesn’t risk closing hospitals many Minnesotans rely on. My common-sense reforms focus on lowering premiums, guaranteeing coverage, and finally addressing drug costs. This kind is the kind of real healthcare reform Minnesotans need.”


Lewis Calls On Smith To Disavow SCOTUS Threat

Lewis Calls On Smith To Disavow SCOTUS Threat

March 5, 2020

WOODBURY, Minn. — U.S. Senate candidate Jason Lewis released the following statement calling for Senator Tina Smith to disavow Senator Chuck Schumer’s attack on the Supreme Court:

“Democrats reached a new low yesterday when Senator Tina Smith’s main political and financial benefactor, Chuck Schumer, threatened Supreme Court Justices Neil Gorsuch and Brett Kavanaugh. Schumer’s unprecedented assault on the independence of the judiciary even earned a rebuke from Chief Justice John Roberts. Rather than standing up for decency and condemning the despicable attack, Democrats have remained silent. This is inexcusable.

Today I’m calling on Senator Tina Smith to disavow Schumer’s threats. Failure to do so would be even more evidence that Smith is all in with the radical “resistance” left that uses harsh, even violent rhetoric to attack those they disagree with, as we saw with Schumer’s despicable commentary yesterday. This shouldn’t be a hard decision. Do the right thing, Tina.”


Lewis Promotes Criminal Justice Reform At CPAC

Lewis Promotes Criminal Justice Reform At CPAC

February 28, 2020

WASHINGTON — Today at the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC), U.S. Senate candidate Jason Lewis highlighted his criminal justice reform record as a member of Congress. 

“Criminal justice reform is about compassion. Democrats like Tina Smith talk a good game about being the party of compassion, but they haven’t done anything. And being generous with other people’s money hardly counts,” Lewis said.

“Real compassion is moving people from dependence to independence,” Lewis added. “My bill reformed the juvenile justice system, giving young people a second chance at life while also improving accountability of taxpayer dollars and eliminating duplicative grant programs.”

In the 115th Congress, Lewis authored the Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention Act (JJDPA) reauthorization, providing at-risk youth a vital second chance in life. After a decade of Congress’ failed attempts, Lewis’ bipartisan JJDPA legislation provided evidence-based solutions, better prevention strategies, and increased transparency. Some of the key issues addressed in the bill includes: 1) alternatives to detention for so-called status crimes, 2) the development of job training skills, 3) an end to the use of restraints on known pregnant juveniles, 4) restrictions on detaining juveniles awaiting trial with adult inmates, and 5) help for victims of human trafficking. Lewis’ bill also reduces racial disparities without establishing numerical standards that might affect public safety.

Many organizations supported Lewis’ efforts including Boys Town and the National Juvenile Justice Network. Local law enforcement also came out in support of the legislation, including Red Wing Police Chief Pohlman who said “Lewis’ bill is about getting youth back on track after making a wrong turn … it is smart crime prevention that puts the interests of young people first.”




February 24, 2020

WOODBURY, Minn. – U.S. Senate candidate Jason Lewis announced the endorsement of Minnesota Citizens Concerned for Life (MCCL).

“I am honored to receive the endorsement of Minnesota Citizens Concerned for Life,” Lewis said. “As a former Congressman with a perfect pro-life voting record, I choose to protect life and stand proudly with the people at Minnesota Citizens Concerned for Life.” 

“In contrast, my opponent Senator Tina Smith, a former Planned Parenthood executive, has embraced abortion on-demand, even after birth. I am constantly warning voters of Smith’s dangerous extremism, and no other issue highlights this more than her support of post-birth abortion. Not only did she laud the bizarre statements of Governor Ralph Northam of Virginia when he came out in support of post-birth abortion, Smith also took to the Senate floor to call medical treatment for an infant that survives an abortion ‘inappropriate.’ Plain and simple: this is infanticide, and it is beyond shameful,” Lewis concluded.

MCCL, Minnesota’s largest pro-life organization, announced the endorsement last week, highlighting Lewis’ 100 percent pro-life voting record. This stands in stark contrast to Sen. Tina Smith’s zero percent pro-life voting record. MCCL called attention to Smith’s vote to oppose protections for newborn babies who survive abortions, even going as far as to speak out against the bill in what they described as a “flagrantly dishonest speech.”


FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Congressman Stauber Endorses Lewis For Senate

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Congressman Stauber Endorses Lewis For Senate

February 21, 2020

WOODBURY, Minn. – U.S. Senate candidate Jason Lewis announces the endorsement from Congressman Pete Stauber (MN-08).

“I am honored to receive Congressman Pete Stauber’s endorsement,” Lewis said. “The Iron Range way of life is under attack by urban elites and radicals in the Democratic Party. Rather than standing up for her own constituents, Senator Tina Smith has fallen right in line with the extremists in her own party. This must stop!”

“From mining to manufacturing, I am fighting for the hardworking families in the Eight District. We must push back on the Democrat extremists’ agenda, and this starts at the February 25th precinct caucuses,” Lewis concluded.

Stauber, who was elected to Congress in 2018, endorsed Lewis on Friday, calling on fellow conservatives to get to their neighborhood precinct caucuses and support Lewis for U.S. Senate.

“Jason is a true friend and ally who is fighting for our way of life,” Stauber said. “He consistently stands with workers throughout the Eight District, including the Iron Range. Jason visits northeastern Minnesota often, listening to hardworking families and touring the local mines to learn about their concerns about how Washington is attacking our
way of life.”

“I am proud to endorse Jason because we need his strong, conservative voice in the U.S. Senate to push back against the radical, socialist agenda that would abolish mines, kill manufacturing, and move our country backward. The stakes are high this year. I encourage all Republicans to get out and caucus for Jason this Tuesday,” Stauber concluded.