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When Republicans Were Progressive


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About the Author

Dave Durenberger is a retired three-term US senator and the retired chair of the National Institute of Health Policy. Lori Sturdevant, an editorial writer and columnist for the Star Tribune, has written several books on Minnesota history.


"This excellent book reminds us that there is a different and better path that for many decades worked for Minnesota and the country. We need it back." from the foreword by Norman J. Ornstein "Today's citizens and politicians, both in Minnesota and throughout the country, would do well to read this book. Dave Durenberger and Lori Sturdevant show how progressive Republicans made Minnesota a state that works--and how Republican US Senate leaders found policy space between right and left to make the country better in challenging times. Politics is not a dirty word: it's the way we figure out how to build a better world together. Minnesotans did it, and this country can do it again." US Senator Bob Dole
"Dave Durenberger provides a window into events, movements, and personalities playing an essential but previously overlooked role in Minnesota political history. His candid book shines deserved light on the influential progressive Republican movement that originated with the governorship of Harold Stassen in 1938 and shaped Minnesota government in subsequent decades." Steven Schier, Carleton College
"If the past allows us to better understand the future, then When Republicans Were Progressive lights the way to a more moderate party: one that truly values the future and the children who will inherit it. A compelling read." Governor Arne Carlson
"Dave Durenberger grew up during the challenging 1930s and '40s. It was also the beginning of Minnesota's progressive Republican Party. By learning and listening he developed an enthusiasm for and dedication to public service which he has never lost. This book is an inspiring reminder of the way politics is supposed to work." US Senator Nancy Landon Kassebaum Baker
"In 1990, by overwhelming margins, the Congress enacted major clean air legislation. It was the culmination of a ten-year effort led by a small bipartisan group of legislators that included Dave Durenberger. His deep knowledge of the issues and his strong powers of persuasion made possible what today seems impossible: Placing the national interest above party interest to enact legislation that benefits all Americans. "Dave has written a book about the Minnesota Republican Party, and how it shaped him and his beliefs. At a time in our history when bipartisanship is so rare, Durenberger's book should be of interest to all Americans." US Senator George J. Mitchell
"While looking back, Dave Durenberger captures what is needed to lead us forward: vision, conviction, and a dedication to the greater good." Kathleen A. Blatz, Retired Chief Justice, Minnesota Supreme Court

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