Voter guide: Where the 1st District candidates stand on the issues

Jim Hagedorn, Dan Feehan
Republican U.S. Rep. Jim Hagedorn (left) and Democratic challenger Dan Feehan.
Jim Mone | AP Photo

DFL candidate Dan Feehan, an Iraq war veteran, former teacher and former Defense Department official, is in a rematch with incumbent U.S. Rep. Jim Hagedorn, a Republican who worked for years in Washington in the Treasury Department, for the 1st District seat.

Here’s a quick look at where they stand on top issues for Minnesotans.

View more candidates and their answers via our voter guide made in collaboration with the League of Women Voters of Minnesota.

President Trump

Hagedorn: He has typically voted in line with the administration. He has campaigned with the president and promised to support Trump.

Feehan: He has re-upped his 2018 pledge to be “an independent voice in Washington.” Feehan has been critical of the Trump administration’s response to the pandemic.

Police reform 

Hagedorn: He recently signed a “police pledge,” stating  he supports the police and opposes any action toward defunding them.

Feehan: He has spoken in support of criminal justice reform that addresses racial disparities. He says Congress needs to take more action to support communities as a way to combat crime.

COVID-19 pandemic

Hagedorn: He supports the Paycheck Protection Program. He wants a full reopening of the economy. He supports increasing serological testing and making sure rural hospitals get adequate funding.

Feehan: He supports focusing on public health as the first step in reopening the economy.. He has hosted informational virtual town hall meetings on the virus. He wants to increase access to testing for COVID-19.

Gun Control

Hagedorn: He wants to protect the 2nd Amendment and has spoken out against legislation that would expand background checks

Feehan: He supports universal background checks and lifting the federal ban on gun violence research.

Health care

Hagedorn: He is critical of the Affordable Care Act and supports improvements to Medicare “by opposing all efforts to burden the system beyond its original intent.” 

Feehan: Supports the expansion of Medicare but not Medicare-for-all. He has stated that health care is not a political issue. He thinks that high costs have been hindering care and treatments.

Education

Hagedorn: He supported legislation ensuring children could get the food they needed at school. He supports expanding Flexible Spending Account eligibility to include tuitions.

Feehan: He wants to make sure there are multiple affordable options for preschool. He wants to ensure there will be adequate services at a low cost for early childhood educators. He supports controlling the costs of childcare. He supports legislation that would put a cap on student loan rates and expand job paths to loan forgiveness. 

Immigration

Hagedorn: He supports more security at the Mexico-U.S. border, advocating for a border wall. He wants to replace chain migration with merit-based immigration and has spoken against sanctuary cities and birthright citizenship.

Feehan: He supports immirgration reform that focuses on border security and economic health. He says the U.S. should “prioritize going after drug traffickers, criminals, and terrorists who try to enter this country.”

Abortion

Hagedorn: He supports anti-abortion legislation, including the Born-Alive Abortion Survivors Act and Life Begins at Conception Act.

Feehan: He is opposes restrictions on legal abortion, previously saying “Reproductive health is a personal matter that shouldn't be dictated by Washington politicians.”

Jobs and economy

Hagedorn: He wants to improve and expand markets for Minnesota farmers. He supports rural broadband and additional assistance for small businesses. He is also focused on expanding jobs in agriculture, manufacturing and the medical field.

Feehan: He supports trade deals that benefit farmers and opposes tariffs that impact agriculture. He says we will work with unions, colleges and businesses to create new jobs.

Climate change

Hagedorn: He denies science around climate change, saying “I do not believe in man-made climate change.” He approves of Trump’s efforts to expand fossil fuel production.

Feehan: He has called climate change a national security threat and supports the expansion of sustainable energy in rural Minnesota.

Taxes and gov’t spending

Hagedorn: He cosponsored the Protect Medical Innovation Act, “to remove excise taxes that impedes innovation of medical devices.”

Feehan: He said he would fight to expand the child tax credit. He wants to increase funding for child care as well as transportation and infrastructure.

Marijuana

Hagedorn: He does not support the legalization of recreational marijuana use.

Feehan: He supports legalizing recreational marijuana.

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