1982 election in Medina had familiar names, issues

The Medina Journal in 1982 featured election news in its first few months of publication. The monthly newspaper, now defunct, bore news of the primary election on its front page. Out of 1,618 registered voters in Medina, 543 came to vote. The voters declared party affiliations — 315 Republican and 226 Democrat.

The Medina Journal in 1982 featured election news in its first few months of publication. The monthly newspaper, now defunct, bore news of the primary election on its front page. Out of 1,618 registered voters in Medina, 543 came to vote. The voters declared party affiliations — 315 Republican and 226 Democrat.

Medina voters in 1982 could cast ballots for candidates whose names are familiar to people today and some issues from 1982 are echoed in today’s political conversations.

For example then State Rep. Tad Jude was running for the State Senate. His campaign ads called him “a worker for Medina.” In November 1972 he was the youngest person to be elected to the Minnesota State Legislature. He turned age 21 in December, just prior to being sworn in, in January. The Minnesota state constitution requires legislators to be 21 in order to serve.

Today Jude is a Minnesota State Supreme Court Judge serving Minnesota’s 10th Judicial District.

On a more local level, the Medina Journal, a monthly newspaper, was in its first few months of publication, just in time to publish candidate profiles for Medina City Council elections. The Medina Journal no longer exists.

Tom Anderson was running unopposed for his third term. His candidate statement sounded like it might have been written by candidates in recent elections.

He said, “I fully support the recently adopted Comprehensive Plan, which calls for a rural life style in the non-sewered residentially zoned areas, while promoting industrial-commercial districts on Highway 55. The plan also requires a new north-south road for the purpose of health, safety and public welfare.”

In the mid 2000s the idea of a new north-south road in Medina was controversial. Medina has very few roads that enable motorists to cut north-south to travel between Orono and Corcoran.

Anderson talked about other items that still are relevant today. He said, “Some of my objectives are: a stoplight at Highways 55 & 116, the extension of County Road 116 through Medina, the installation of a safe turn lane at the Medina Ballroom and the continuation of the road rehabilitation program. I would like to make Cable TV available to feasable (sic) areas, connect the Hamel sewer to the Plymouth trunk line, stimulate the areas scheduled for growth, hold down taxes.”

Today Medina still is wrestling with traffic issues at Highway 55 and County Road 116, turn safety on Highway 55, getting cable TV to residents and getting sewer connections built in areas, such as Loretto, where they are needed.

Four candidates were running in 1982 for two Medina City Council seats. William L. Reiser sought re-election to his third full term. His opponents were Emil Jubert, Anne Heideman and Bob Mitchell.

Jubert, a former chair of the Medina Planning Commission, called himself an “independent” representing no special interest group. He said in his candidate profile, “There can never be a substitute for personal involvement, especially at the local level. I believe our failure to discharge our responsibility is clearly linked to a growing feeling that we have as a people have lost control of government. If that is true, we have not lost control, we have given it away through inaction and apathy.”

In other area elections, a notable Medina name was on the Orono ballot. JoEllen Hurr, who was Medina’s planning and zoning administrator, ran for mayor of Orono.

Who won the 1982 elections? Coming up with that information would take some digging amongst old newspapers.

Contact Susan Van Cleaf at susan.vancleaf@ecm-inc.com

 

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