November 7, 2022

Response to New York Times Article, Not All Suburbs Are 2022 Battlegrounds. Some Have Already Gone Blue.

NY Times Editors,

Please find a response to Blake Hounshell’s article, Not All Suburbs Are 2022 Battlegrounds. Some Have Already Gone Blue.

When reading the New York Times article about Congressman Dean Phillips, I don’t know whether to laugh or to cry. It is laughable because it eagerly admits that Congressman Phillips needs to take on “odd jobs” just to make him feel “grounded.” On the other hand, it is sad because one would think even the New York Times might have enough respect for my husband’s 20 years of service in the Navy to call him by name and not merely refer to him as Phillips’ “opponent.” 

My husband is Tom Weiler and he is the Republican candidate challenging Dean Phillips in Minnesota’s Third District. Tom does not need to sign up for odd jobs with constituents to understand the meaning of hard work. He has worked hard every day of his life. From paying his way through college on a Navy ROTC scholarship, to operating submarines’ nuclear reactors 500 feet under the sea, to standing watch through the night on an aircraft carrier in the Middle East, Tom knows how to work hard. For the last 20 years he has served this country and sacrificed much to defend our freedoms — including the freedom of the press.  So while the New York Times may have the right to leave out my husband’s name, I also see it as my duty to mention it. 

Tom Weiler is going to bring Minnesota’s Third District the change it needs. He knows the struggles Minnesotans are facing because he is right there beside them. Tom wakes up concerned about the best way to pay the rent, buy kids’ shoes, and afford groceries. He is not removed from the challenges real people are facing. He faces them with Minnesota. 

The article correctly points out that our campaign has not spent millions on this race. We do not have that luxury. Congressman Phillips relied on a family fortune to secure his seat, dropping in $1.3 million in his first race to defeat an incumbent. Tom can only pour his energy, time, heart and soul into spreading his message. And he has. That is why he makes a perfect representative for Minnesotans in the Third District. He is not a smooth politician; he is a hard working citizen who never got any hand-outs in life. These qualities make him fit to understand Minnesotans and to bring their real concerns to Congress. 

I’m confident readers will see through the fluff and get to the substance. Congressman Dean Phillips is isolated from the real issues Minnesotans face everyday. He is worth well over 50 million dollars! The Times states that “Phillips approaches politics like a branding exercise,” and boasts of his ability to market himself and his Repair Truck. How unfortunate for his constituents, since governing is not just an exercise. There are real lives feeling the effects of bad policies passed by Phillips and the party he votes with with lock step. The safety of our neighborhoods, the costs of our food and shelter, the falling test scores of our children— these are issues that cannot be “branded” away. Instead, a change must be made. My husband, Tom Weiler, is the candidate who will bring that change, after Minnesota voters make the New York Times eat its words on November 8th. 

Cynthia Weiler 

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