Election 2016 preview: Minnesota Senate District 25

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ROCHESTER, Minn. – Senate District 25 covers parts of northwest Rochester as well as cities like Oronoco, Byron, Dodge Center, Kasson and Mantorville.

The seat has been filled by Republican Dave Senjem for the past 14 years. Senjem tells us he has the energy and passion to continue serving the people in this area.

“I think I know certainly the process, I think I’ve done it pretty well,” explains Senjem. “There’s a lot of challenges ahead in Minnesota whether it’s transportation, healthcare, the list goes on and on, poverty and so forth. I want to go back and work on those projects, they’re important to me, they’re important to the state of Minnesota and we need to get some of these things done and I want to be part of that.”

His challenger is Dale Amorosia, who is not local but says he has had a connection to the area since 1978 when he began treatment at Mayo Clinic for a heart defect. He explains that running in this election is his way of giving back to the community.

“I think there’s a clear difference between myself and my opponent, he has been in there for 14 years,” Amorosia says. “I would say to the people in the area, if you’re happy with how things are going in the legislature, than you should vote for Dave. If you’re not, you should vote for me. I bring new ideas and I bring new leadership.”

We asked both candidates what issues they would focus on next session if elected.

“I think some of the critical issues are transportation funding, education, I think rural broadband, those are just some of the issues,” Amorosia says. “You could also make a case for social justice as well as the skyrocketing healthcare and childcare costs.”

“We have almost perhaps a mental illness crisis in our state,” Senjem adds. “We don’t have the facilities currently to handle mentally ill patients that need facilities, overnight facilities and so on. That one in particular I want to work on, and frankly the whole menu of issues around mental illness. It’s a personal thing to me, it’s something I want to work on and if you talk about my number one priority, there’s certainly a lot of them but on a personal level that is it.”

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