Advocates a ‘politics of care’
Adapted from the Minneapolis Labor Review, October 22, 2022
By Steve Share, Minneapolis Labor Review editor
BURNSVILLE — “My message is government should be responsible,” says Jess Hanson. She advocates for a “politics of care,” saying, “I don’t participate in the hyper-partisanship.”
Hanson is running to represent the new House District 55A, which includes the city of Savage and three precincts in northwest Burnsville. For the past two years, she’s represented a lot of the same area in the legislature after winning election to the House in 2020.
Hanson is endorsed by the Minnesota AFL-CIO and the DFL Party.
In both 2021 and 2022, she earned a 100 percent voting score from the Minnesota AFL-CIO on working families issues — “that stuff is a no-brainer,” Hanson says.
A single mom, Hanson says she has worked full-time since she was 16 years old. “I still live paycheck to paycheck,” she says, noting that seven out of ten Minnesota millennials also live paycheck to paycheck.
She’d like to create a “millennial agenda” to address the needs of her generation. “We’re all just so focused on trying to survive,” she says. “We’re next up to lead and we’ve got no guardrails.”
Hanson’s race will be one of the key races to maintain a pro-labor majority in the Minnesota House. Two years ago, she won by just 800 votes.
“When I campaigned the first time, I had to do everything on the phone and online” because of the pandemic, she notes. “This year on the doors, I have teams out seven days a week.”
The top issues voters are voicing, she says, include protecting women’s right to choose, addressing gun violence, and “people want education funded and safe.”
With regard to education, she maintains, “we have the funds to fully-fund it — it’s a matter of political will.”