Gov. Tim Walz, running for reelection on a promise of “One Minnesota,” once described Republicans as naturally inclined to “demonize” others before mockingly accusing them of using “The Handmaid’s Tale” as an “operator’s manual.”
“The Handmaid’s Tale” is a book by Margaret Atwood, popularized by a hit television adaptation, wherein women are essentially enslaved, raped, and forced to bear children for a class of male rulers called “commanders.”
This is the reality Republicans want, according to Walz, who is attempting to position himself as the “bipartisan” candidate in the race for governor.
But he didn’t stop there.
“If you don’t think they’re coming after your marriage, if you don’t think they’re coming after your children … um … the logic behind what they did of denying a woman a right to make her own health care decisions would certainly be in line for them to deny women the right to vote. What would have been absurd a decade ago is now our reality,” Walz said.
These comments were made during Walz’s guest appearance at the Second District DFL’s virtual convention this May.
“We’ve made progress, but it’s not because we’re getting much help from our Republican neighbors,” Walz told the group of party activists, referring to his legislative priorities.
“We’re not going to get much help, but the one thing that’s clear is when the Republicans have no plan, they turn towards division and they turn to their natural inclination to simply try and demonize those that they don’t understand,” he added.
He concluded his comments by urging DFLers to “draw a clear line” between themselves and Republicans.
“A lot of folks out there who don’t and are frustrated with politics say both sides do it. That is untrue. That is untrue. We’re dealing with people who don’t think ‘The Handmaid’s Tale’ is fiction. They think it’s an operator’s manual. They think demonizing children for who they are is a good thing,” the governor said.
“I just want to end with this: when I hear them talk about life and all of their self-righteousness, I have a bill in front of the legislature right now that would provide health care to every single child regardless of immigration status. And they won’t hear it,” he concluded.
Walz is in a similar bind as the leader of his party, President Joe Biden, who ran on a message of unifying the country but aggressively attacks his opponents as “semi-fascists” who pose a threat to the “very soul of this country.”
“But there’s no question that the Republican Party today is dominated, driven, and intimidated by Donald Trump and the MAGA Republicans,” Biden said during a highly-criticized primetime address Thursday night. “And that is a threat to this country.”
“They are a threat to our personal rights and to the pursuit of justice, to the rule of law, to the very soul of this country,” he continued.
Gov. Walz will square off against Republican challenger Dr. Scott Jensen in the November election. The two candidates have debated just once so far.
“We’re facing challenges,” Walz said during that debate. “But when we’re facing challenges, the solution is not to divide more of us. It’s to come together.”