Steve Simon to focus on 2024 elections, won’t run for Congress
Minnesota Secretary of State Steve Simon knows how much is at stake in what promises to be a contentious and historic 2024 election season from the presidential race on down. So he’s decided to devote his time and energy to administering elections here in Minnesota rather than run for the 3rd District congressional seat that will become open with Dean Phillips not running for re-election.
“It’s flattering and I really appreciate all the encouragement and support people gave me, but look, I have a day job I have to be really focused on here,” Simon said when asked about whether he’s considering a run for Congress. “I really have to stay focused on the task at hand and the work that needs to be done this year to make sure we strengthen and maintain our democracy in Minnesota. Remember, we’re number one in the country most years for voter turnout and I don’t think that’s an accident. People have to work at it.”
Simon’s decision leaves State Sen. Kelly Morrison and Democratic National Committee member Ron Harris as the two main contenders in a Democratic 3rd District primary. No major Republican candidate has yet emerged.
Meanwhile, Simon says he’s focused on the start of early voting in Minnesota’s March 5 presidential primary.
“The primary itself, game day let’s say, is March 5, Tuesday, March 5,” he said. “It’s Super Tuesday which means we join a bunch of other states having a presidential primary that day. But absentee voting for that contest starts Friday, Jan. 19. That’s just around the corner.”
Simon says he’s glad Minnesota state law didn’t make a decision on whether Donald Trump’s name can appear on the Minnesota primary ballot. Maine’s Secretary of State Shenna Bellows, a Democrat, did decide to take Trump’s name off that state’s ballot.
“She was put in a tough spot. She was put in a judge-like role according to their law, but our law is very different,” Simon said. “Here, actual judges perform as judges. The Minnesota Supreme Court, not me or any other elected official.”
The U.S. Supreme Court said Friday they will rule on a decision by Colorado’s Supreme Court to remove Trump from the Colorado ballot. Ultimately, Simon believes the U.S. Supreme Court will decide the issue for all states.
“All these roads lead to the U.S. Supreme Court,” he said. “We’re not going to have a situation in this country where you’ll have some cluster of states doing one thing and another cluster doing another. Former President Trump will either be on the ballot everywhere or nowhere. The U.S. Supreme Court will make sure of that.”
You can hear much more from Steve Simon on “At Issue with Tom Hauser” Sunday morning at 10 a.m. on Ch. 5.