Knight Errant

Inside a Conversation with Senator Klobuchar

Mia Rheineck, Varsity Writer

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Since 2007, Minnesota Democratic Senator Amy Klobuchar has established herself as an across-the-aisle senator. As the first woman from Minnesota elected to the Senate, Klobuchar has become known for sponsoring numerous bipartisan bills, remaining contactable to constituents, and maintaining a powerful voice in the Senate.

Courtesy of U.S. Senate Photographic Studio
As the first women from Minnesota to be elected to the Senate, Amy Klobuchar hopes to inspire young people to make an impact.

Klobuchar’s work in the Senate has gained national recognition. She is consistently co-sponsoring bills, has become an outspoken Trump-critic, and has established herself as a powerful voice in the Senate. Although much of her legislative work happens halfway across the country, Klobuchar always has the best interest of Minnesotans in mind. “As I meet with Minnesotans across the state, I have learned what matters most to my constituents is service. As your partner in Washington, it is my responsibility to serve and represent the people of Minnesota in the U.S. Senate,” Klobuchar said.

Prior to going to Washington, Klobuchar worked extensively in Minnesota to better the state. After giving birth, she worked to increase the amount of time new mothers could stay in the hospital. As she led the largest prosecutors office in Minnesota, Klobuchar learned skills that have helped in the Senate. “As Hennepin County Attorney, I learned how to be fair, compassionate, but most importantly, rely on the facts for making decisions. These are lessons I carry with me as I represent Minnesotans in the U.S. Senate,” Klobuchar said.

Klobuchar has had a life full of politics and public service. Growing up, her dad was a journalist who covered politics for the local paper. In high school, Klobuchar participated in high school government, as well as leadership roles. Once in college, she took classes, and participated in clubs, and internships that reflected her interests.

She has surpassed anything even I could have imagined for one of my students.”

— Ms. Sue Jewell

During her time as a student at Wayzata High School, Klobuchar was a driven student. She was valedictorian of her class, goal-oriented, and hard-working. Her high school teacher Ms. Sue Jewell remembers her former student vividly. “Amy was, as you might imagine, an excellent student during her Wayzata HS years; she was valedictorian of her class and, during her senior year, the writer of an essay I will never forget. Her clear thinking and incredible focus, even back during those tumultuous seventies, assured me of her potential success; she has surpassed anything even I could have imagined for one of my students,” Jewell said.

In high school, Klobuchar’s tenacity was prevalent. Her teacher remembers Klobuchar being very driven to achieve an Ivy League. She worked as many as three jobs at a time. Jewell remembers the Senator working late hours at a pie shop, but would always be prepared for class the next day. She also remembers Klobuchar and her friends as coalition builders. “[They sometimes became] impatient with the pace of their world but always coalition builders; those qualities give me faith in Amy’s ability to bring order to the chaos of today’s Washington and get things done,” Jewell said.

Klobuchar has shown she can handle any challenge politics throws at her. As her high school teacher watches her former student make great strides in Washington, she is excited to see what the future holds for the Senator. “Seeing a former student being discussed as a viable Presidential contender is a real joy for me,” Jewell said.

In today’s polarized political climate, the coalition building from Klobuchar’s high school years has become one of her most helpful traits. She is constantly reaching across the aisle to try to make the Senate bipartisan and not seperated. Throughout her career, she has credited the late Republican Senator John McCain as one of her inspirations in her bipartisan work. “Before my late friend and mentor Senator John McCain passed in August, the last piece of advice he gave me was that ‘Nothing in life is more liberating than to fight for a cause larger than yourself.’ Senator McCain also taught me the value of building relationships and that there is more that unites us than divides us. That is why I have worked with my Republican colleagues on policies addressing the opioid crisis, the rising costs of prescription drugs, expanding broadband access, and workforce development,” Klobuchar said.

Never underestimate your own knowledge or abilities because woman are some of the most effective leaders I know.”

— Senator Amy Klobuchar

In the current divisive political climate, Klobuchar is hopeful that the next generation of leaders will be able to have an impact. She believes that young people will be leaders and have the ability to embrace differences and put the collective interests in front of individual priorities. The Senator also hopes for even more women to get involved in politics. “As the first woman elected to the United States Senate from the state of Minnesota, my advice to young women who want to pursue a career in politics or law is to never be afraid to stand up for what you believe in or speak your mind. Never underestimate your own knowledge or abilities because woman are some of the most effective leaders I know. Women legislators have sponsored more bills and passed more laws than their male counterparts,” Klobuchar said.

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Inside a Conversation with Senator Klobuchar