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Labor 2012

Paul Rosenthal: Advocate
for small business and infrastructure needs

From the Minneapolis Labor Review, October 26, 2012

By Steve Share, Minneapolis Labor Review editor

EDINA — “I was very frustrated with the way the last [legislative] session went. The partisanship was out of control,” says Paul Rosenthal, House District 49B candidate, running to return to the legislature to represent Edina and Bloomington.

Rosenthal is endorsed by the Minnesota AFL-CIO and the DFL Party.

“This last session of the legislature was the most partisan I’ve ever seen,” says Rosenthal. “People are fed up. That’s what I’m hearing on the doors… People are looking for leadership… They’re tired of the partisanship.”

“People are disappointed in the way the last session ran and the government shutdown [in 2011], taking money from schools and one-time solutions,” he reports.

“I’ve always been one to work across the aisle to get things done,” notes Rosenthal, who won election to the House in 2008 and served one term, focusing his efforts to pass legislation helping small businesses.  He reports that 90 percent of the bills he authored had bi-partisan support.

“I made a strong effort to get to know the members on the other side of the aisle when I was elected before and I’ll do the same again,” Rosenthal promises. “You have to be able to work together, otherwise you don’t get anywhere.”

Rosenthal sees issues where legislators should be able to find common ground: “Employers are looking for a well-educated workforce, they’re looking for infrastructure to get employees to work and goods to market.”

With today’s low interest rates, he adds, “money has never been cheaper.” He thinks the legislature should have passed a much larger bonding bill this year. “I was disappointed we didn’t get people back to work and infrastructure repaired. We need infrastructure if we want to be a first-class state.”

Rosenthal seeks to return to the House after losing his 2010 re-election bid to a Republican challenger. The state Republican Party, along with independent corporate-funded groups “spent well over $100,000 to defeat me,” he notes. “This time I’m going to be more prepared.”

Rosenthal has experience as the founder of two small businesses.

“I’ve always been a supporter of unions,” Rosenthal adds. “They make our country what it is… I’ve been a voice for the middle class.”

Living in the Twin Cities since 1991, Rosenthal and his wife Elizabeth — who grew up in Hopkins —have two children and are active school volunteers.

Paul Rosenthal website:

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