Minnesotans head to the polls Tuesday for the primary election to determine which candidates they want to appear on the ballot in November.
In the Second Congressional District, voters will have a choice of four Republicans to replace retiring Rep. John Kline in one of the most closely watched races in the nation.
Jason Lewis, a former conservative talk show host, has the GOP’s endorsement and the highest profile. But Darlene Miller, CEO of Permac Industries, has the backing of Kline and has been running commercials advertising his support. John Howe, a former state senator, and Matt Erickson are also running.
Just 20,000 people are expected to vote in the district – perhaps less – and candidates acknowledge that getting out the vote efforts will be critical.
On the DFL side, Rep. Phyllis Kahn is waging the toughest fight of her political career as she fends off challenges from Ilhan Omar and Mohamud Noor. The endorsing convention ended in a deadlock, though Omar garnered the most support. Omar has also raised far more money than her competitors, and has sought to make the case that the increasingly diverse district needs a representative who better reflects the community. Omar or Noor would be the first Somali-American to serve in the legislature if elected.
In St. Paul, the only black representative in the House faces a primary challenge from Rashad Turner, a Black Lives Matter activist who has accused Rep. Rena Moran of not doing enough for people of color. Both candidates are DFLers.
And Alan Duff is challenging House Speaker Kurt Daudt in a Republican primary, contending that the state’s highest Republican in elected office is not sufficiently conservative. Duff is a retired major from the U.S. Army Reserve who served with Daudt on the Isanti County Board of Commissioners.
“As I travel the state I always tell Minnesotans that your vote is your voice, and to never give that up,” said Secretary of State Steve Simon in a statement. “I encourage all eligible voters to make their voices heard in the … primary election.”
The Secretary of State’s office has accepted 28,487 absentee ballots.
Voters can find their polling place here.
Source: The Star Tribune