MINNESOTA | MN-gov

GOP Lawmaker to Ponder Race During Fall

Tim Walz hired regional political directors.

Zach C. Cohen
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Zach C. Cohen
Sept. 11, 2017, 11:12 a.m.

State Sen. Julie Rosen (R) “is considering a bid for governor. … Rosen … said she’ll spend the fall assessing if she’ll join the governor’s race.”

“A handful of Republican women considering major political bids in Minnesota in 2018 would be looking to buck a daunting historical trend: Their party has never chosen a woman to run for governor or U.S. senator. So far, the nine Republicans to join the open race for governor in 2018 are men. … That could still change. … But it’s in notable contrast to the DFL, where three of the six declared candidates for governor next year are women. And it comes at a time when Republicans in Minnesota and nationally are adapting to a reshaped political landscape under President Donald Trump, who many critics on the left see as hostile to women’s rights.” (Minneapolis Star Tribune)

One of those female candidates is Rebecca Otto (D), who is making the case she “can turn out not only Greater Minnesota but—just as critically—the large DFL base, even after Republican attacks. … Since 2000, every Democratic woman who has run a race on the Minnesota general election ballot has won.” (release)

THIS AND THAT. Rep. Tim Walz (D) has hired Clare Verbeten as his “deputy political director for the Third, Fourth and Fifth Congressional Districts. She was party affairs director at the DFL. Erik Anderson was named deputy political director for the First and Second Districts and the southern part of the Seventh District. He comes from” Gov. Mark Dayton’s (D) 2014 campaign. “Gwenia Fiske­vold will be deputy political director for northern Minnesota. She was with the Senate caucus campaign last year.”

State Rep. Mike Sundin (D) “has endorsed” state Rep. Paul Thissen (D). “Sundin is from greater Minnesota and has labor ties.” State Rep. Erin Murphy (D) “announced a bunch of endorsements recently, including” state Sen. Melisa Franzen (D) and state Rep. Mike Freiberg (D). “The Minnesota Nurses Association, where Murphy was executive director before entering politics, will endorse this month.”

AFSCME will host a gubernatorial candidate forum Oct. 6 in Duluth at 1 p.m.

Former state Party Chair Keith Downey (R) “is lighting it up on the hustings as he runs hard on an anti-establishment message. The downside to running an outsider campaign is that Republican lawmakers could play a significant role at the state convention that will determine who gets endorsed by the party.” (Minneapolis Star Tribune)

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