Well, the political play-offs begin in earnest today. We know the cast of characters set to take the field. The vast number of legislative retirements, 55, is not the largest ever seen, but quite significant, when including staff retirements, the amount of institutional knowledge leaving is over 500 years and we must be honest, it will take many years to backfill.
So, let’s look at the pending battles.
For Congress, there are contests in 1st, 4th, 5th 7th and 8th Districts.
1st (Open Seat)
DFL-Endorsed Candidate for the August 9th General Election and now the August 9th Primary, Hormel Executive Jeff Ettinger is challenged by George H Kalberer and James Rainwater we don’t expect much of a contest here, and it is worth noting the field is far smaller than those seeking the seat in the Special Election.
On the Republican side. The GOP Endorsee former state Representative Brad Finstad, will compete with state Representative Jeremy Munson, and Matt Benda.
In the 4th, (McCollum Seat) incumbent Congresswoman Betty McCollum faces an upstart candidate in the ilk of the Democratic Socialists in Amane Badhasso, and an unknown candidate Fasil Moghul.
The is a Republican Primary which will not matter in the end which has opportunities for Gene Rechtzigel, Jerry Silver or May Lor Xiong to fall to McCollum and become political footnotes.
In the 5th, (Omar Seat) the incumbent Ilhan Omar is challenged by who we consider the only viable opponent former Minneapolis City Councilman, and School Board member Don Samuels, AJ Kern, Albert Ross and Nate Schluter.
Again, the is a Republican field, but the Democratic victor will prevail in the most prevalent Democratic district in the nation. So the inconsequential candidates are Cicely Davis, Guy T Gaskin and Royce White.
In the 7th, (Fischbach Seat) there is a Democratic Primary only between DFL endorsee Jill Abahsain and Alycia R Gruenhagen.
In the 8th, (Stauber seat) Republican incumbent Pete Stauber is challenged by Harry Robb Welty. On the Democratic side DFL endorsee Jen Schultz will need to fend of John Munter.
Governor and Lt Governor
Republicans Dr Scott Jensen and Matt Birk (endorsed), Bob “Again” Carney Jr and Captain Jack Sparrow, and Joyce Lynne Lacey and Kent Edwards
DFLers Tim Walz and Peggy Flanagan (incumbents) (endorsed) and Ole Savior and Julia M Parker
GLC Steve Patterson and Matt Huff and Darrell Paulsen and Ed Engelmann
LMN James McCaskel and David Sandbeck and Chris Wright and L.C. Lawrence Converse
Secretary of State
DFLers Steve Simon (incumbent) (endorsed) Steve Carlson
Republicans Kim Crockett (endorsed) and Erik van Mechelen
DFLers Keith Ellison (incumbent) (endorsed) and Bill Dahn
Republicans Jim Schultz (endorsed), Sharon Anderson, and Doug Wardlow
In the state legislative contests, the following candidates are paired. The majority of interparty contests are clearly on the Republican side in both the Senate and the House.
Senate Primary Races
Senate District 03
Republicans Kelsey Johnson and Andrea Zupancich
Senate District 04
Republicans Dan Bohmer and Edwin Hahn
Senate District 05
Republican Dale A.P. Anderson, Bret Bussman and Paul J. Utke (incumbent)
Senate District 07
DFLers Ben DeNucci and Kim [Kotonias] McLaughlin
Senate District 09
Republicans Nathan R Miller and Jordan Rasmusson
Senate District 10
Republicans include former DFL Rep Steve Wenzel, former Rep Jim Newberger and Nathan Wesenberg
DFLers Suzanne M. Cekalla and Brent Krist
Senate District 11
DFLers Michelle Boyechko and John A. Peura
Senate District 13
Republicans Jeff Howe (incumbent) and Ashley Burg
Senate District 15
Republicans Gary Dahms (incumbent) and Larvita McFarquhar
Senate District 23
Republicans Gene Dornink (Incumbent) and Lisa Hanson
Senate District 31
Republicans State Rep Cal K. Bahr and Maribella McDermid
Senate District 33
DFLers Brian Baber and Nancy McLean
Senate District 38
DFLers Huldah Hiltsley and Susan Pha
Senate District 41
Republicans State Rep Tony Jurgens and Tom Dippel
Senate District 42
Republicans Will Dammann and Paul Hillen
Senate District 44
State Rep Tou Xiong, Leslie Lienemann and Nancy Livingston
Senate District 48
DFLers Balakrishna “Bala” Chintaginjala and Dan Kessler
Senate District 54
Republicans Eric Pratt (Incumbent) and Natalie Barnes (Endorsed)
Senate District 56
DFLers Justin Emmerich (Endorsed) former State Rep Erin Maye Quade
Senate District 58
Republicans Jake Cordes and Bill Lieske
Senate District 62
DFLers Omar Fateh (incumbent) and Shaun Laden
Senate District 63
DFLers Zaynab Mohamed and Todd C. Scott
Senate District 63
DFLers Sandy Pappas (incumbent), Zuki Ellis and Sheigh Freeberg
House Primary Races
Republicans Blain Johnson and Roger J. Skraba
Republicans Josh Heintzeman (incumbent) and Doug Kern
Republicans Art Johnston and Allan Kehr II
DFLers Arik Forsman and Alicia Kozlowski
Republicans Blake Paulson, Isaac Schultz and John Ulrick
Republicans Pam Altendorf and Jesse Johnson
Republicans Marj Fogelman and Jayesun Israel Sherman
Republicans Kurt Daudt and Rachel Davis
DFLers Erik Johnson and Barbara J Kruschel
DFLers Richard A Paul and Ashton Ramsammy
Republicans Mark Bishofsky and Tina Riehle
DFLers Josiah Hill and Joe Widmer
Republicans Elliott Engen and Kiz Taylor
DFLers Arlan Brinkmeier and Nathan Kells
DFLers Andrew Carlson (incumbent) and Steve Elkins (incumbent)
DFLers Sandra Masin (incumbent) and Liz Reyer (incumbent)
Republicans Bob Loonan and Erik Mortensen (incumbent)
DFLers Maria Isa Pérez-Hedges (endorsed) and Anna Botz
DFLers Liz Lee (endorsed) and John D Thompson (incumbent)