Congressional campaign waits for appellate court’s decision on date of election

Eric Chaloux
Updated: October 14, 2020 06:25 PM
Created: October 14, 2020 04:21 PM

Republican Tyler Kistner’s campaign is waiting for the Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals’ decision to come back to see if the date of the 2nd Congressional District's election will change once again.

A federal judge ruled Friday that the election for Minnesota’s 2nd Congressional District should proceed in November as originally scheduled, despite the recent death of a third-party candidate.

Democratic U.S. Rep. Angie Craig asked the judge to require that the election be held in November instead of being delayed until February after the Sept. 21 death of Legal Marijuana Now Party candidate Adam Weeks triggered a state law that led to the postponement.

“It’s chaotic,” said Billy Grant, Kistner’s campaign manager. “Absolutely an unfortunate situation that nobody would have forseen."

Grant spoke on behalf of his candidate, who is off the campaign trail for now because his wife is expecting their second child any day.

"We're confident that the 8th circuit will uphold the well-established legal prescient," Grant said.

Incumbent Rep. Angie Craig and her wife cast their absentee ballots at Eagan City Hall on Wednesday morning.

Craig was asked if she’s concerned about the new legal challenge to the date of the election.

“The message the federal judge gave us was clear this federal law supersedes state law when it comes to federal U.S House races,” Craig said. “So vote up and down the ballot in November’s general election and we'll see where it goes from here."

If the 8th Circuit reverses the district judge, then a special election in February will be called in this race, according to the Minnesota Secretary of State’s Office.

But as of today, the second congressional seat will be settled in November.

Third Party Candidate Votes?

The Secretary of State’s Office said any votes cast for the late Adam Weeks, whose name is still on the ballot, will not go toward the party’s new candidate, Paula Overby.

At a campaign stop at a city park in Eagan on Wednesday Morning, Overby said the appellate court needs to move the voting to a special election in February in order to give the Legal Marijuana Now Party more time to campaign.

"It’s the only thing that's fair to the voters," Overby said. “We're under a lot of unusual circumstances here. It's unprecedented."

Changing Your Vote?

Minnesota’s Secretary of State’s Office said you can ask to cancel your ballot until the close of business two weeks before Election Day.

After canceling a ballot there are other options to be able to vote including, having a new ballot mailed, voting in person at your local election office or vote at your polling place on Election Day, according to the Secretary of State’s Office.

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