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State Rep. John Lesch joins National Guard

Word came Thursday that state Rep. John Lesch, a four-term DFLer representing St. Paul, has joined the National Guard.

His day job is working as an assistant city attorney in St. Paul, prosecuting domestic assault crimes.

The enlistment came as a surprise, but maybe we should have known because he does seem to have a thing about the military: in 2006 he traveled to Iraq on his own, and planned to blog about what he saw in Baghdad. But the trip was roundly criticized by government and military officials.

Military spokesman Lt. Col. Barry Johnson, said he was relieved when Lesch left Iraq.

“This grandstanding has no place here,” Johnson said. “Stay home.”

Last month Lesch took another fact-finding trip, this time to New Zealand and with legislators from other states, to learn about their health and energy policies and posted about it regularly on his Facebook page. He’s also posted and tweeted regularly during House sessions, and generally been one of those folks who keeps you up to date on his life electronically.

But barely a mention of the National Guard business on his Facebook page. (Although his status message might offer a clue: John Lesch knew Han Solo was on to something: ““Hokey religions and ancient weapons are no match for a good blaster at your side.”

And in response to a friend’s question: Why join up now? he replied:

“The window was closing on the army’s free gift bag promotion”

The Pioneer Press story notes that he’s off to basic training in Georgia and should be back in time for the legislative session starting in early February.


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Comments (2)

  1. Submitted by Richard Schulze on 10/10/2009 - 09:45 pm.

    Call me cynical, but I can see higher political ambitions in this representative’s future. No doubt the service will look good on his resume in the next campaign…

  2. Submitted by Hiram Foster on 10/12/2009 - 08:21 am.

    One might thing so, but Rep. Lesch’s problem is that he is something of a nut.

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