Wednesday, April 20, 2011

I listened intently and carefully to Hubert Humphrey from, roughly, the 1964 Democratic National Convention to his passing in 1978 (1911 -1978), and read many of his previous remarks in speeches, books and interviews. At age 10, I was energized by his But Not Senator Goldwater speech. At 14, I hammered lawn signs together at the Democratic Farmer Labor (DFL) Party booth at the Minnesota State Fair in Saint Paul. Later, I was a Humphrey volunteer, supporter & staffer. His final speeches in 1977--MN AFL-CIO, U.S. Senate & U.S. House--felt then, & now, like prayerful insights from a caring, wise, reflective, gentle soul.

Like many of you, I'm now preparing to celebrate the Humphrey Centennial, May 27, 2011. I'm working with the nonpartisan, educational, and focused on finding solutions, May 27, open to all, "Hubert H. Humphrey Birthday Centennial Reunion & Policy Discussions." Note: Advance registration will be required, and include the opportunity to select the individual Policy Discussions you wish to participate in. With many requests & invitations pending, the Speakers, Volunteers, Founding Sponsors, Donors, Honorary Co-Chairs, Moderators & Panelists, include:

Hubert H. "Skip" Humphrey, Walter Mondale, Arvonne Fraser, Mark Dayton, R.T. Rybak, Barbara Johnson, Al Eisele, Mark Ritchie, Joan Anderson Growe, Al Quie, Kim Ellison, Lori Sturdevant, D. J. Leary, Tom Tipton, Shar Knutson, Vance Opperman, Kathy Tunheim, Ted Grindal, Jack Ohman, Glenn Totten, Blois Olson, Libby & Tom Horner, Norman Sherman, Steve Hunegs, David Erickson, Matt Entenza, Steven Clift, Dane Smith, Lisa Goodman, John Qunicy, Elizabeth Glidden, Dee Long, Alberto Monserrate, Charles Samuelson, Steve Novak, Ahmed Tharwat, Todd Otis, Nancy Farnham, Virginia Melvie, Sarah Helgen, Jackie Bateman, Scott Benson, Ellen Watters, Diane O'Brien, Carole Faricy, Brian Henry, Susan Stuart, Jennifer Moire, more than 1600 "Friends of Hubert H. Humphrey liberalism" (Democrats, Independents & Republicans); and many more great folks.

The "Hubert H. Humphrey Birthday Centennial Reunion & Policy Discussions" founding sponsors are Vance Opperman; Kathy Tunheim; Lockridge Grindal Nauen P.L.L.P., Ted Grindal; and, the "Friends of Hubert H. Humphrey liberalism" on Facebook. Again, the events take place on Friday, May 27, the 100th anniversary of Humphrey's birth. The location is the Minneapolis City Hall, where Humphrey began his career of public service as Mayor fighting to end anti-Semitism in the city. The Humphrey Centennial Policy Discussions are 8 AM to 6 PM, including a Hubert H. Humphrey State Capitol Memorial Statue luncheon.

The Policy Discussions will open with remarks by former MN Attorney General Skip Humphrey, followed by keynoter Al Eisele, editor-at-large of The Hill and author of "Almost to the Presidency, a dual biography of Hubert Humphrey and Eugene McCarthy." Skip Humphrey's hopes for the Policy Discussions: 1) civil, reasoned, fact-based small group discussions; 2) looking ahead 5, 10, 15 years to 3) find solutions to intractable social problems; 4) identify strategies for taking advantage of new opportunities; and 5) produce summary reports for distribution and posting. The participant-driven discussions will include topics like, The Future of: American Workers; Citizens in Politics; Jobs, Farm Income & Energy; Liberty, Equality & Fairness; the U.S. in the World; Learning & Information; Health Care & Aging; News & Privacy; 21st Century governance; the legacy & future of Hubert H. Humphrey liberalism; and more.

As so many of us have come to appreciate & value, Minneapolis, MN, is the birthplace & continuing home of Hubert H. Humphrey liberalism under Mayor R.T. Rybak and City Council President Barbara Johnson. U.S. Rep. Keith Ellison of Minneapolis is often at the front of liberalism nationally. As a U.S. Senator, now-Minnesota Gov. Mark Dayton voted with his colleague and great liberal leader, U.S. Sen. Paul Wellstone, against authorizing President George Bush to go to war in Iraq. And, in 2010, Mark Dayton won election as Governor asking that tax rates be adjusted so that many of those who have benefited greatly in our economy will pay taxes at rates similar to many of those who have not prospered in our economy.

The Humphrey Centennial Reunion is from 6 to 8 PM in the Minneapolis City Hall Rotunda. Speakers will include Mayor Rybak, former MN Secretary of State Joan Anderson Growe, Gov. Mark Dayton, and Vice President Mondale. Mondale, a Minnesota native who now lives in Minneapolis, was a great friend and colleague of Hubert Humphrey's. His call to all:

Come to the Minneapolis City Hall on Friday, May 27, to celebrate Hubert's life and continue the good fight for working families.

info: "Friends of Hubert H. Humphrey liberalism" on Facebook.