Rep. Kahn's science degree isn't enough

Nicholas Goldsmith, PhD candidate, performing field research. Image courtesy of Ben Pecka.

Dear Friend,

Rep. Kahn has repeatedly touted her science background throughout this campaign, claiming it enables her to bring an underrepresented perspective to the legislature and advance science throughout the state. Like Rep. Kahn, I am also a scientist and elected representative. I am a PhD candidate in Ecology, Evolution, and Behavior at the University of Minnesota and serve as president of the Council of Graduate Students. But unlike Rep. Kahn, I don’t believe a science degree automatically prepares you to be an effective legislator. 

We don’t need to increase the number of people with science degrees to ensure a scientific perspective in the State Legislature. Rather, we need to increase the number of leaders like Ilhan, who are willing to listen to scientists and understand how scientific solutions can best serve our increasingly diverse community. 

If you believe that understanding your constituency is more important than a biophysics degree, I urge you to support Ilhan’s campaign today.

Donate      Volunteer

What impresses me most about Ilhan is her ability to listen. I am confident that Ilhan will use her cultural fluency and co-governing skills to listen to scientific experts, critically evaluate the information put before her, and connect this information with the people impacted to make informed decisions.

Ilhan is also the strongest candidate on the number one scientific issue in the state -- support for the University of Minnesota. It’s the scientific center of the state, and Ilhan’s prioritization of higher education is the strongest way to support science across disciplines. If you’re interested in learning more about why Ilhan is the best candidate to represent the science community, check out my recent Letter to the Editor in the Twin Cities Daily Planet.

It is not enough to just be a scientist. It’s time for a community leader who listens. It’s time for Ilhan. Please donate or volunteertoday to ensure that Ilhan will be able to champion scientific solutions in the State Legislature. 

Forward together,

Nicholas Goldsmith
PhD candidate, Ecology, Evolution, and Behavior
University of Minnesota


The 2016 primary election is August 9. If you live in District 60-B, click here to register for an absentee ballot now.

Ilhan is endorsed by:

Senator Scott Dibble
Senator Patricia Torres Ray
Minneapolis City Council Members Lisa Bender, Alondra Cano, Andrew Johnson
Former Mayor & DNC Vice Chair R.T. Rybak

TakeAction Minnesota

OutFront Minnesota Action
African American DFL Caucus
DFL Feminist Caucus
Minnesota Young DFL
Somali-American DFL Caucus
Stonewall DFL
Minneapolis School Board Members Carla Bates, Kim Ellison, Josh Reimnitz
Former Chair, Minneapolis School Board Richard Mammen
Former Minneapolis School Board Member Jill Davis
Minnesota Student Association President Joelle Stangler & President Elect Abeer Syedah
Minneapolis Park Board Commissioner Brad Bourn
Minneapolis Board of Taxation and Estimation Board Member Carol Becker
Minneapolis NAACP President & St. Thomas Professor Nekima Levy Pounds
St. Louis Park Council Member Anne Mavity
St. Paul Public School Board Members Zuki Ellis, Steve Marchese
Jordan Anderson, Kyra Brown, Audrey Callahan, Carter Christensen , William Dane, Alaina Friedrich, Ann Gilbert, Deneen Hanzlik, Bob Hulteen, Amber Jones, Nicholas Kor, Brooke Magid-Hart, Lulete Mola, Jack Nelson-Pallmeyer, Charlie Parker, Jordan Parshall, Felicia Philibert, Cordelia Pierson, Matthew Ogbeifun, Pete Rode, Anne Hibbard, Noah Shavit-Lonstein, Amy Shellabarger, Eva Shellabarger, Michael Stoesz, Kyle Smestad, Lecia Stock, Jason Sole


Paid for by Neighbors for Ilhan

Liz Loeb, Treasurer

P.O. Box 13415
Minneapolis, MN 55414