Fair Politics: Dayton Talks Jobs, Gets Heckled

FALCON HEIGHTS, Minn. (WCCO) – It’s the first day of the Minnesota State Fair and it was hard not to walk a few feet without bumping into a politician.

WCCO-TV Political Reporter Pat Kessler spent much of the day with Gov. Mark Dayton, and it was an interesting experience. Dayton got out among the people who haven’t forgotten about the longest government shutdown in history, leaving thousands without jobs and wanting answers.

He’s a first-time governor who got elected after a controversial recount election. He had to deal with the government shutdown. As it turned out, Dayton got heckled from an unexpected source.

He was dressed in a sports shirt, slacks, and walking shoes. Minnesota’s new governor made his way slowly through the fair. Among many issues with fair-goers, the two most important were the situation for a new Vikings stadium and the government shutdown that affected thousands.

“I don’t think it should have happened at all. We elect those people to take care of the people, but they failed horribly,” said one fair-goer.

Dayton said he welcomed everyone’s opinions.

“It’s great not to be in a coat and tie. It’s a chance to get an earful, that’s part of why I’m here,” Dayton said.

Fair-goers were generally friendly, and polite. But not all. During a live interview on WCCO 4 News at Noon, Dayton was heckled loudly.

As it turns out, it came from a nearby booth: Republican Tom Emmer, who lost the governor’s race to Dayton, and his radio talk show sidekick Bob Davis.

“Leave us alone. Why don’t you tell the governor that? Leave us along. Get out of our lives, governor,” said Davis.

If Dayton had one mission, it was this: A chocolate malt at the Dairy Building. Misson accomplished.

“They’re good, really good,” Dayton said.

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