Rally at Klobuchar’s office: 150 Minnesotans stand firm on KXL

So much in a movement is dependent on folks simply showing up! Today we had an unprecedented crowd of over 150 of the most committed Minnesotans at the Klobuchar rally and press event today. Thank you for bearing the cold and standing strong for a livable planet. We had channel 5 news, the uptake, and a number of other press outlets there.

At 1:30 we gathered at the doors of the senator’s office with songs, chants, hot chocolate and some words of wisdom from Dr. John Abraham, 18 year old Akilah Sanders Reed, and others. Our plan was to bring the group inside and have us each introduce ourselves to the staff. Our overwhelming numbers made that difficult, but we were disappointed when they threatened to cancel the meeting if any more than 9 people came in. We were also disappointed the staff refused to come down to greet us. You can be sure they noticed though.

At some point the cops were called to remove us from the property. We retired to the sidewalk to honks and cheers from the traffic on Washington Ave. Thanks to everyone for your cooperation. On this day we didn’t want the press to focus on police conflict.

My favorite part of the event was when we passed the bull horn and heard from everyone who was gathered. Over and over people voiced the message that the movement was growing and changing. That we finally were at a point where we had to start working together to fight for our shared future. We are excited to learn more about the Minnesota Idle No More event at the Canadian Consolate on Thursday 3/21.

At 2:00 a small group were let inside for a meeting with Amy’s state director Sammuel Clark, as well as two other staffers, Greg Bohrer and Adam Durand. We were intending on having a much larger delegation, but were were told that the meeting would be canceled if we sent more than a few of us up. Brian Nowak from MN350 coordinated the meeting. Others present were Kathy Hollander from North Star Energy Coalition, Michael Keifer from the DFL 75, Mindy Ahler from Minnesota Interfaith Power and Light, Paul Thompson from Citizen Climate Lobby, Abbie Plouff from Minnesota Youth Environmental Network and MN350 and Dr. John Abraham from St. Thomas University.

It was a spirited conversation that lasted over an hour and 40 minutes. During that time climate scientist John nailed down the consequences of developing the tar sands. Kathy talked about the risks associated with leaking pipes, Mindy talked about the people of faith across Minnesota who were waiting and watching for her to make the right decision. Abbie talked about the economics of the pipeline, and told about how renewable technologies held more promise for the Minnesota Economy. Mike told them that the DFL was paying attention as well. Together the group delivered the message that the KXL pipeline was not a “nuance” but a litmus test of her ability to stand up for our future.

So we wait and watch and see what Amy does. We are certain our presence has helped her to understand that it is a whole new era of movements in MN. We are stronger together. We will fight for our future.