Minnesota Report

There are only two DFL Primary contests which pit incumbent Houses members against their colleagues and one where the incumbent is trying to recapture the label of DFL, when he has been clearly rejected by the DFL House Caucus.

Rep John Thompson (I-67A) was expelled from the DFL House Caucus on September 14, 2021, but is still a candidate on the DFL Primary ballot, facing off again DFL Endorsed candidate Liz Lee. This contest will see the strength or lack of, Thompson’s organizing prowess, which often stokes the fires of the aggrieved, but may not result in a significant voter turnout, because the only contest, which will draw interest is the contest between Congresswoman Betty McCollum (D-MN04) and Amane Badhasso (DSA) who has raised significant money for her campaign, which is largely from nonresidential Oromo donors from out of the district.

In the state house race turnout will be key, but how that turnout occurs will be interesting to watch. One, other factor might be the open contest in the district 6 Ramsey County Board. This nonpartisan 7-person field might also draw some relative interest. Although because it involves three Hmong candidates, DFL endorsed Mai Chong Xiong allow there were questions about the integrity of the endorsement, Ving Vang Pao (daughter of the late famed General Vang Pao) also endorsed by retiring Commissioner Jim McDonough and Foua Choua Khang, two African American candidates Nick Muhammad and Clara O Ware, along with former St Paul City Councilmember Dino Guerin, and the sole Republican Greg Copeland, it could prove interesting.

To this end, we believe this will be the only district that produces a DFL Primary Sample Ballot.

In the Eagan and Burnsville seat 52A, here is where the only incumbent Rep Sandra Masin (DFL-52A, Eagan) faces off against another incumbent who carries the endorsement Rep Liz Reyer (DFL-52A, Eagan), again this endorsement is suspect because less than 1/3 of the eligible delegates showed up, but nevertheless the race is on.

There is some interesting chatter about Reyer and the terms Carpetbagger and Opportunist are being bandied about because she only lists a Post Office Box for her personal address in her filing https://cfb.mn.gov/reports-and-data/viewers/campaign-finance/candidates/18596/2022/, and also very little information on her is available on the legislative reference library website https://www.lrl.mn.gov/legdb/fulldetail?ID=15549, but then she is a freshman.

As we understand, she is rented an apartment in the district, when her house in her old seat 51B, wasn’t located in the new district, she chose to run in. This is because she was first matched-up against two-term incumbent Rep Ruth Richardson (DFL-52B, Mendota Heights). It’s clear Reyer saw Masin as an easier target.

Ironically, Reyer had been a past supporter of Masin and even helped out on a previous campaign.

This race will be an interesting one as well, because Masin, the 12-year incumbent has represented approximately 85% of the district during her tenure and Reyer a mere 15% or so, this means Masin has the political cache of name recognition.

We expect there will not be a DFL Sample Ballot, because there are not any races up the ballot in serious contest, unless Reyer chooses to spring for it on her own, but if it just her on the ballot then it’s a personal literature piece, because to put other candidates on such a piece, it means they have to contribute to the effort.

Finally, the Edina/Bloomington contest between two incumbents both without the DFL endorsement, Reps Andrew Carlson (DFL-50B Bloomington) and Steve Elkins (DFl-50B, Edina). These two are largely cut from the same cloth and vote in a similar manner. With little to distinguish one from the other, it’s a toss-up and we wonder if a clearly Scandinavian name will prevail or not. The district is more heavily Edina.

It will be worthwhile to observe the results.