Alpha News recently sat down with Ryan Wilson, a Republican candidate for Minnesota state auditor.
Wilson, a first-time candidate, said two recent financial debacles pushed him into running for office.
The first was the Metropolitan Council’s revelation that the Southwest light rail project will take an extra three years to complete and possibly cost an additional $550 million.
“Whether you’re for or against trains, you should be for saying what the project is going to cost and spending what the project is going to cost,” Wilson said.
The second event that propelled Wilson into running was the FBI’s raid of more than a dozen properties connected to Feeding Our Future, a Minnesota-based nonprofit that allegedly spent tens of millions of dollars on luxury cars, homes, and vacations with funds it obtained through COVID relief.
Wilson noted that while this scandal doesn’t fall directly under the state auditor’s authority, it does offer insight into the amount of fraudulent behavior happening across the state.
“Things like accountability isn’t partisan and transparency isn’t partisan, math isn’t partisan,” Wilson said, explaining that he wants to be a nonpartisan candidate for the position.
“When you don’t audit something or when you know that you’re not going to be audited and you’re getting a free pass, that’s when you get opportunities for some of this corruption,” he added.
Wilson said he has more experience than the current state auditor, Julie Blaha, because of his background in monitoring and auditing clinical trials. He also has an MBA and runs his own company.
“I have lots of experience in the auditing field, understanding what it means to root out and really dig and find what might be hidden,” he said. “Also, as an attorney, [I can] ask the right questions and get the right answers.”