MINNESOTA
     Aug. 14, 2018 Primary Election

Open Seat
(Aug. 2018) The race to succeed retiring two-term Gov. Mark Dayton (DFL) drew many candidates with a range of experience in elective office and the private sector.  Republicans have not won a statewide office in 12 years, but Trump came close to carrying the state in 2016, falling short by 44,765 votes (1.52 percentage points) out of more than 2.9 million votes cast. The 2018 cycle is proving to be a busy one for Minnesota.  The resignation of Sen. Al Franken means two U.S. Senate seats will be up, and there are open U.S. House seats

Earliest of the major candidates to announce for governor was state Rep. Erin Murphy (DFL) in Nov. 2016; last in was Attorney General Lori Swanson (DFL) in June 2018 after she failed to secure the DFL endorsement at the party's convention.  Most of the candidates announced during the course of 2017.  Precinct caucus straw polls held by both parties on the evening of Feb. 6, 2018 helped winnow the field.  The state party conventions at the beginning of June 2018 further clarified the race.  As the primary approached three major candidates contested the DFL nomination and two vied for the Republican nomination.  Candidates' choices for lieutenant governor are interesting to watch.  Candidates often try to achieve gender balance with their picks; there are differences in the timing of the running mate announcements and the role the number twos play and their prominence in the campaign.  In Minnesota candidates for governor (and other legislative and constitiutional offices) can qualify for public subsidies overseen by the Campaign Finance and Public Disclosure Board (>). 

In the DFL primary, Tim Walz won with 41.6% of the vote followed by Erin Murphy at 32.0%, Lori Swanson at 24.6% and Tim Holden at 1.1%.  In the Republican primary Jeff Johnson won with 52.6% to 43.9% for former Gov. Tim Pawlenty and 3.5% for Matt Kruse.

In November, in addition to the major party candidates, several third party candidates will also be on the ballot.

Major Party Candidates
DFL
Announced
(Withdrew)
Running Mate
Announced
Erin Murphy
Nov. 17, 2016

Erin Maye Quade
June 3, 2018
Lori Swanson
June 4, 2018

Rick Nolan
June 4, 2018
Tim Walz
Mar. 27, 2017

Peggy Flanagan
Oct. 5, 2017
Rebecca Otto
Jan. 9, 2017
June 4, 2018
Zarina Baber
May 21, 2018
Tina Liebling
Apr. 2, 2017
Mar. 12, 2018


Chris Coleman
Dec.  13, 2016
Feb. 12, 2018


Paul Thissen
June 15, 2017
Feb. 7, 2018


         Other DFL Candidates: Tim Holden/James Mellin II; Ole Savior/Chris Edman.

GOP
Announced
(Withdrew)
Running Mate
Announced
Jeff Johnson
May 10, 2017

Donna Bergstrom
May 14, 2018
Tim Pawlenty
Apr. 5, 2018

Michelle Fischbach
May 31, 2018
Mary Giuliani Stephens
Nov. 29, 2017
June 2, 2018
Jeff Backer
May 2, 2018
Keith Downey
July 24, 2017
Apr. 18, 2018


Matt Dean
Apr. 26, 2017
Jan. 25, 2018


Dave Osmek
Aug. 22, 2017
Jan. 8, 2018


Blake Huffman
April 18, 2017
Sept. 3, 2017


         Other former GOP candidates include Bob Carney, Jr.; Lance Johnson; Phillip Parrish; and Jeffrey Wharton

        
        Major Candidates

On the Ballot



  






missing: Pawlenty



missing: Swanson




Former Candidates



  












missing: Liebling




missing: Osmek, Huffman


Hats in the Ring:
Major Candidate Announcements

DFL
Murphy
Coleman
Otto

Walz
Liebling

Thissen











Swanson

Nov.
16
Dec.
16
Jan. 17
Feb.
Mar.
Apr.
May
Jun.
Jul.
Aug.
Sep.
Oct.
Nov.
Dec.
Jan. 18
Feb.
Mar.
Apr.
May
Jun.
GOP





Huffman
Dean
Johnson

Downey
Osmek


Stephens




Pawlenty



Out of the Ring:
Major Candidates Leave the Race

DFL















Thissen
Coleman

Liebling


Otto

Nov.
16
Dec.
16
Jan. 17
Feb.
Mar.
Apr.
May
Jun.
Jul.
Aug.
Sep.
Oct.
Nov.
Dec.
Jan. 18
Feb.
Mar.
Apr.
May
Jun.
GOP










Huffman



Osmek
Dean


Downey

Stephens

On the Issues
Murphy/Maye-Quade
Swanson/Nolan
Walz/Flanagan
Johnson/Bergstrom
Pawlenty/Fischbach



ADVERTISEMENT