MINNESOTA
     Nov. 6, 2018 Governor

Gov.
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+Tim Walz/Peggy Flanagan (DFL)
1,393,096
53.84%
Jeff Johnson/Donna Bergstrom (R)
1,097,705
42.43%
Chris Wright/Judith Schwartzbacker (GLC)
68,667
2.65%
Josh Welter/Mary O'Connor (L)
26,735
1.03%
w/in
1,084
0.04%

2,587,287

Plurality: 295,391 votes (11.41 percentage points).
  MN Secretary of State -Elections




Notes:
Two-term Gov. Mark Dayton (DFL)
was retiring.  In the general election U.S Rep. Tim Walz (DFL) defeated Hennepin County Commissioner Jeff Johnson (R), who was also the Republican nominee for governor in 2014.

There were interesting campaigns for the nominations in both parties.  The DFL held its convention in Rochester on June 1-3.  Competing for the endorsement were Walz, state Rep. Erin Murphy and state Auditor Rebecca Otto; Murphy won the party's endorsement on the seventh ballot, but Walz won the Aug. 14 primary by 41.6% to 32.0% over Murphy with Attorney General Lori Swanson taking 24.6%  Republicans held their convention in Duluth on June 1-2 and endorsed Johnson (>), but there was still an Aug. 14 primary contest in which Johnson defeated former Gov. Tim Pawlenty and Matt Kruse by 52.6% to 43.9% and 3.5%.

Walz, from Mankato, was first elected to represent Minnesota's 1st CD, which runs right across the southern part of the state, in 2006; he is veteran and a former teacher and coach.  Johnson was elected Hennepin County Commissioner in 2008 and re-elected in 2012; he previously served three terms as a state representative, first elected in 2000, and ran unsuccessfully for state Attorney General in 2006.
 
Walz announced state Rep. Peggy Flanagan as his running mate on Oct. 5, 2017 while Johnson named retired Marine Corps intelligence office Donna Bergstrom from Duluth as his choice on May 14, 2018.

Walz and Johnson met on TPT's Almanac set for a first debate that aired Aug. 14 (>); on Aug. 31 at the Minnesota State Fair (>); on Sept. 19 at Twin West Chamber of Commerce at Marriott Minneapolis West (>); in a radio debate on rural and agricultural issues from MinnWest Technology Campus in Willmar on WCCO on Oct. 9 (>); on KSTP ABC 5's Day of Debates on Oct. 22 (>); and in a final debate on TPT's Almanac on Nov. 2 (>).



Campaign Managers:
Tim Walz: 
Leah Solo
(June 7, 2018 succeeding Nick Coe)  Started on the campaign as outreach director.  Director at Our Minnesota Future.  Candidate for state Senate iDistrict 44 (Plymouth) in 2016.  Political director of the SEIU Minnesota State Council; started there as outreach director in Dec. 2012.  Deputy campaign director for the Minnesotans United for All Families.  Worked four cycles for DFL candidates including campaign manager on Mark Ritchie's 2010 run for Secretary of State, and political director on Tim Walz's campaign.  Grew up in Mankato.

Jeff Johnson:  Justin Arnold
(April 2017)  Political strategist at Majority Strategies, May 2016-March 2017.  Iowa political director on Marco Rubio for President, May 2015-Jan. 2016.  Staffer to Sen. Jack Whitver, Jan.-May 2015.  Political director on Whitaker for U.S. Senate, from July 2013.  Studied at University of Iowa.
.

See also:
Cyndy Brucato.  "Johnson wins GOP endorsement, setting up primary against Pawlenty."  MinnPost, June 3, 2018. 

Trey Mewes.  "Murphy wins DFL endorsement; Walz promises primary run."  Mankato Free Press, June 2, 2018.

David Orrick.  "Minnesota politics kicks into high-gear this weekend with conventions in Rochester and Duluth."  Pioneer Press, June 2, 2018.

Bill Sorem.  "Precinct Caucuses Boost And End Campaigns For MN Governor,"  The Uptake, Feb. 7, 2018.




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