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Knutson makes bid for House District 12B

Clifford Knutson of Alexandria released information this week about his campaign to seek the DFL endorsement for the Minnesota State House 12B seat.

One other DFL candidate is in the running - Rick Rosenfield of Alexandria.

The DFL District 12 endorsing convention is set for Thursday, April 19 at Minnewaska High School, west of Glenwood on Highway 28.

Paul Anderson of Starbuck is the Republican-endorsed candidate.

District 12B includes the southeastern corner of Douglas County, which has a population of 7,691.

Knutson is a life-long resident of Minnesota and lives west of Alexandria on Lake Taylor.

He received a degree in web design, sales and marketing, and truck driving from Alexandria Technical and Community College. Currently, he hauls gravel for road construction projects and has a taxidermy business.

Knutson describes himself as a moderate progressive who wants to see improvements in job creation, education, and universal access to affordable health care. He added that the state needs a fair tax system that leads to a balanced and responsible state budget.

"I base my decisions on facts and the most current information available and what is fair for everyone," he said. "I am not an expert on everything and when I approach a problem or challenge, I seek out the advice and knowledge of those more informed."

Knutson said his experience running his own business helped him develop skills that will be a benefit for the citizens of Minnesota.

Knutson said he's concerned for the future of the state and country.

"Opportunities once enjoyed by past generations seem to be out of reach for the average person," he said. "Tax breaks and opportunities for advancement are often given to the rich and the well connected. This does little to give incentives to those willing to work hard for a better life and contribute to society."

As wages have flattened, manufacturing jobs continue to move overseas, and the middle class is stuck paying the tab, Knutson said.

"I believe we need a government that is both effective and efficient and one that represents and creates opportunities for everyone," he said.

Knutson said it's important for legislators to look beyond their biases and remove the emotion from the debate. "I am open-minded and can work to help solve problems and accomplish the task at hand," he said.

Knutson enjoys hunting, fishing, creative writing and spending time with friends. He's a member of Minnewaska Ducks Unlimited and has been an active member of the Douglas County DFL since 2008.