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Letters: Fenton applauded for civility, legislative work; Ponder reality of Planned Parenthood

Fenton applauded for civility, legislative work

For an elected official who decried "partisan bickering and the blame game" in her last column, Rep. JoAnn Ward apparently does not practice what she preaches. A recent letter to the editor attacking fellow Rep. Kelly Fenton was not only partisan and negative, but wildly inaccurate as well.

Fenton, who shared many of the positive bipartisan initiatives signed into law this year in her last column, was attacked by Ward and falsely accused of supporting a final higher education bill that will raise tuition at the University of Minnesota. This is extremely misleading as not only did the U of M receive $1.3 billion in funding (a $54.6 million increase), but President Eric Kaler also publically shared at committee hearings this session that a tuition increase would come regardless if every funding request was met. As a parent of a U of M student, it's frustrating that no matter how much in taxpayer dollars were sent to the U of M, they still were going to place a higher financial burden on their students.

While the University of Minnesota has constitutional autonomy to set their tuition, Fenton did support freezing tuition at two and four year Minnesota State Colleges and Universities, helping thousands of students across the state.

Oh, and that bipartisan tax bill Ward dislikes will provide meaningful tax relief to Minnesota families, seniors, and small businesses — it included college affordability provisions such as a first-in-the-nation tax credit for people repaying student loan debt and credits for families saving for college with 529 Savings Plans.

So thank you, Rep. Fenton, for your civility and work on behalf of Woodbury families, taxpayers and college students this session. And Rep. Ward, let's be sure we stay respectful and honest when talking about policy and politics.

Michelle Venturo



Ponder reality of Planned Parenthood

The recent writer who was praising the services of Planned Parenthood ("Many rely on Planned Parenthood for health care") omitted one of their most active "services." While listing items like cancer screening, birth control and HIV testing (many of these are already provided through health care plans and government welfare programs), she omitted their main "service" — that of ending the life of unborn babies.

One should not view Planned Parenthood as a caring agency that wants to lend a helping hand to girls and women. It has a political action arm — Planned Parenthood Action

Fund (PPAF). This fund has spent hundreds of thousands of dollars to assist certain political candidates. An example of this is in the 6th district of Georgia where this fund has contributed more than $100,000 to support the current candidate who has vowed to defend abortion laws and funding for Planned Parenthood. Maybe this is the reality of Planned Parenthood that we should ponder.

Carol Olson