Republican Tom Emmer says if he's elected governor, he wants Minnesota to return to practicing the "art of constitutional government."
The state legislator from Delano told a supportive audience of about 150 people at Metro State University Monday night that his key priorities would be public safety, infrastructure and public education.
Emmer also urged a dramatic overhaul of the state's social service and welfare programs. Emmer took a shot at his key Republican rival, Marty Seifert, who released eight policy papers on issues such as the state budget, transportation and education.
"You can talk about policies all day," Emmer said. "We can hire all of the experts from coast to coast and they can put out all kinds of policies for you as to how 'We're going to change this and revamp that.' But you know what? It all starts with those documents; those founding documents. You must get back to practicing the art of constitutional government."
Seifert's campaign manager Kurt Daudt said Emmer should have outlined how he'll accomplish his goals.
"People are looking for specifics and we haven't seen specific plans on how he wants to do these things," Daudt said. "He's talked about at times reducing the state budget by up to 40 percent; numbers that seem almost impossible. I think people want to hear specifics on how he plans to do that."
Emmer and Seifert are vying for the Republican endorsement. Both say they'll drop out of the race if they don't win party backing on April 30.