At Issue: June 10 - Crazy Filing Deadline Week in Minn.; Richard Painter in Studio

June 10, 2018 07:16 PM

Deadline to File for Office Leads to Crazy Week in Minnesota Politics

This week will go down as one of the craziest and most memorable weeks in Minnesota political history. A revolving door of well-known candidates filed to run for office this week, elevating the profile of some already big races on the August primary and November general election ballot.


In the race for governor, Lori Swanson surprised everyone by announcing on Monday that she'd enter the race with Rick Nolan as her running mate. Swanson abandoned her bid for the DFL endorsement for attorney general on Saturday at the state DFL convention in Rochester. Swanson will face endorsed candidate, State Rep. Erin Murphy, and Congressman Tim Walz in the DFL primary. On the GOP side, former governor Tim Pawlenty will challenge endorsed candidate Jeff Johnson, a current Hennepin County Commissioner.

One of the biggest surprises of the week was seeing Congressman Keith Ellison give up his relatively safe congressional seat to run for state Attorney General. Ellison's entry into the race brought on a wave of other candidates to file for the office. Ellison will go up against attorney Matt Pelikan, the DFL-endorsed candidate, State Rep. Deb Hilstrom, former Commerce commissioner Mike Rothman and former Ramsey County attorney Tom Foley in the DFL primary.

Six DFL candidates plan to run for Ellison's seat in Minnesota's 5th Congressional district. The candidates include former DFL House Speaker Margaret Anderson Kelliher, State Senators Patricia Torres Ray and Bobby Joe Champion, State Rep. Ilhan Omar, Frank Drake and Jamal Abdulahi. 

U.S. Senate Candidate Richard Painter in Studio

Richard Painter is running in Minnesota's U.S. Senate special election as a Democrat. He is planning to challenge Sen. Tina Smith in the primary on August 14. Painter is best known as a former ethics lawyer in the George W. Bush administration. When he announced his run, Painter said he was switching parties, from Republican to Democrat. He cited his frustration with President Donald Trump and the current state of the Republican party as his reasons for switching parties. 

Tom Hauser sat down with Painter to discuss his reasons for running for U.S. Senate and the issues he's focusing on during his campaign. 


Amanda Theisen

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