Minnesota gubernatorial candidate says he will withdraw state from refugee program

It is a good campaign message, but in reality will get MN no where.

How quickly people forget that in the last few years three other Republican governors made a big show out of withdrawing their states from the federal program (Texas, Kansas, New Jersey) and of course they still get refugees with Texas presently being the top ‘welcoming’ state in the nation.



Somali population in St. Cloud and elsewhere in MN is increasing.


As they did with those states, the US State Department will simply turn the whole resettlement plan for the state over to a non-profit (contractor) group to manage.  (The Tennessee case is on appeal and if by a miracle, TN wins, then that strategy could go up in flames for the feds.)

Don’t get me wrong, there are political considerations for Mr. Johnson as he is up against former governor Tim Pawlenty in the primary, it is definitely worth discussing in the campaign.  And, as governor there will be many things the state government could do to rein-in the program by reforming the state’s welfare system, etc.

Indeed, Pawlenty was a Republican establishment governor of the state during the expansion of refugee resettlement to St. Cloud and must have known what was happening.  I would say look to his campaign donors and see if he was being funded by big business (poultry!) interests looking for a steady supply of cheap labor to the St. Cloud area.  I presume Mr. Johnson has some good investigators at work to discover Pawlenty’s ties to the program while he was governor.  LOL! Any photos of Pawlenty snuggling with the Lutheran resettlement people?

Actually, I don’t mean to get into a long detailed discussion when I don’t know much about MN politics, but the bottom line is that there is not one silver bullet to save Minnesota.  It will take a concerted effort and lots of really hard work by dedicated individuals and groups at all political levels to turn this ship now.

And, a very important effort will be to make the issue of refugee resettlement/states rights a talking point throughout the gubernatorial campaign as a way of further educating the voters.

From KNSI radio:


(KNSI) – Gubernatorial candidate Jeff Johnson says, if elected, he’ll head to Washington, DC and tell the government that Minnesota is no longer participating in the Refugee Resettlement Program.

“And just set forth the story, and say here is what we’ve done, we’ve done more than any other state by a lot and now we’re no longer interested in participating. I think the Trump administration would work with us on that.”


Tim Pawlenty (left), an establishment Republican, is facing Jeff Johnson on right.  Readers, don’t be confused, this is not the same Jeff Johnson, city councilman, we previously reported on.

On with KNSI’s Ox in the Afternoon, the Hennepin County Commissioner says the program has greatly affected the St. Cloud area and it’s simply not working for Minnesotans.

“To suggest that this is about race or anything else, it’s not, it’s about just being realistic and saying what is this costing, and we don’t know the answer to that because the government won’t tell us.”

He says Minnesota has the highest number of refugees per capita in the country, and has taken in more secondary refugees than all other states combined.

“Minnesota has 2 percent of the nation’s population, yet 13 percent of the nation’s refugees.”

Johnson says, while immigration is governed by federal law, that doesn’t mean that we just roll over as a state any longer.

Listen to Ox’s full interview with Johnson here.

If you have a week, here is my Minnesota archive for your reading pleasure.