In 2018, Republican Jim Hagedorn scored a close 50.1 – 49.7% win over former Defense Department official Dan Feehan (D). Now, we head into a re-match general election this year, and a new Garin-Hart-Yang Research Group internal campaign survey (6/9-13; 601 MN-1 likely general election voters) finds the new race beginning just as close as the former contest ended.
According to a GHY, Mr. Feehan holds a slight 43-42% edge, meaning we will likely see another race in toss-up mode all the way to Election Day. Minnesota’s 1st District covers all of the state’s southern border and has been moving more toward the Republicans in recent elections. It was one of only three seats that flipped from Democrat to Republican in 2018.
Minnesota, the most loyal of all states to Democratic presidential candidates, was close in 2016 when Hillary Clinton carried the state with only a 1.5 percentage point margin. A new Mason-Dixon Polling & Strategy survey (5/18-20; 800 MN registered voters) finds presumptive Democratic nominee Joe Biden leading President Trump, but the spread again suggests the state election could be close. According to M-D, Mr. Biden holds a 49-44% advantage. Minnesota carries 10 electoral votes. This state is a must-win for Mr. Biden.
Former Minnesota Governor and professional wrestler Jesse Ventura announced that he will not become a candidate for the Green Party presidential nomination. Mr. Ventura says doing so would force him to relinquish his employment and health insurance.
The Green Party will have a nominee who will qualify for slotting on most state ballots, as will the Libertarian Party. Michigan Rep. Justin Amash (L-Cascade Township/Grand Rapids), now the first official Libertarian Party member to hold a seat in Congress, is a candidate for his party’s presidential nomination.
Marine Corps Reserve officer Tyler Kistner easily defeated four other Republican candidates over the weekend at the virtual Minnesota Republican convention to capture the official GOP endorsement for the August 11th primary election. Most of the time, Minnesota candidates end their campaign after the state convention delegates act, but it remains to be seen if any of the non-endorsed candidates choose to force a primary. The candidate filing deadline is June 2nd.
Should Mr. Kistner ultimately capture the party nomination he will face freshman Rep. Angie Craig (D-Eagan) who has already amassed a campaign treasury of just over $2 million. The 2nd is a marginal district, so a competitive 2020 contest is again possible.
Attorney and former congressional aide Antone Melton-Meaux appears to be making some political moves to become a legitimate Democratic primary opponent for controversial freshman Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-Minneapolis). Mr. Melton-Meaux is attacking Rep. Omar for not even visiting parts of her geographically small urban district, saying she is not as interested in representing her constituents as she is in promoting her own personal image and national political profile.
For his part, Mr. Melton-Meaux raised almost $500,000 prior to the March 31st campaign finance deadline and showed just under $200,000 cash-on-hand. Conversely, Rep. Omar has attracted almost $3.9 million for the election cycle and has just over $1.3 million remaining in her account. The Minnesota Democratic primary is August 11th. Three other Democrats are also headed to the district nominating convention. It is unclear at this point just how many of the candidates will choose to force a primary after the convention concludes.
More Governors and election officials are keeping their primary calendars intact but are changing their voting systems. As a precaution for COVID-19, a significant number of states are now implementing procedural changes from in-person voting to casting their votes by mail.
At the end of last week, political leaders in the following entities are the latest to take such action in relation to their upcoming primaries: Massachusetts (May 30 local elections), Minnesota (Aug 11 statewide primary), Nebraska (May 12), New Jersey (June 2), North Dakota (June 9), Ohio (ballots must be post-marked on or before April 27), and West Virginia (May 12).
House Agriculture Committee chairman Collin Peterson (D-Detroit Lakes), who was first elected in 1990 and is always coy about whether or not he will seek re-election, announced on Friday that he will run for another term.
Mr. Peterson’s northwestern Minnesota seat is the strongest Trump district (Trump ‘16: 62-31%) in the nation that a Democrat represents. He is the only sitting Democratic House member who did not vote to impeach the President. It is likely he will face former Lt. Governor and ex-state Senate President Michelle Fischbach, who is favored to become the Republican nominee and expected to give Mr. Peterson his toughest re-election battle since the early 1990s. Even in his last two contests against a lesser opponent, Mr. Peterson’s victory percentage had dropped to 52.1% in 2018 and 52.5% in the 2016 general election, so it is likely the Republicans will heavily target this seat for the coming electoral contest.
Mason-Dixon Polling & Strategies reports that their latest data (2/17-20; 500 MN likely Democratic primary voters), and one of the only polls for Minnesota’s Super Tuesday vote, show Sen. Amy Klobuchar now pulling ahead in her home state. The results find her total at 28%, followed by Sen. Bernie Sanders at 23%. The M-D numbers forecast only these two qualifying for delegate allocation. If this were to prove accurate, Sen. Klobuchar would take approximately 41 of the state’s 75 first ballot delegates, while Sen. Sanders would capture the remaining 34.
With polls throughout the Super Tuesday voting region now coming in rapid fire, a new survey from Minnesota joins those being released. Data from this state has been virtually non-existent, but Sen. Amy Klobuchar’s rise in the national race has spurned pollsters to pay some attention to her home state. Minnesota votes on Super Tuesday and has 75 first ballot delegates.
The University of Massachusetts at Lowell has been busy surveying several states. Their Minnesota study (2/12-19; 450 MN likely Democratic primary voters) sees Sen. Klobuchar climbing to the top of the candidate field for the first time here, or anywhere. The results find the home state Senator leading 27-21-16-10-9-9% over Sens. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) and Elizabeth Warren (D-MA), former Mayor Pete Buttigieg, ex-Mayor Michael Bloomberg, and former Vice President Joe Biden, respectively.
If this poll proved wholly accurate, the first three candidates would qualify for delegate apportionment, with Sen. Klobuchar clinching the lion’s share of 32 committed first ballot delegate votes.
The US Census Bureau officers released their latest population projections in order to measure national population growth for the period between July 1, 2018 and July 1, 2019. The results find the national rate of growth slowing to 0.5%, mostly as a result of decreased immigration. The peak period for the decade came during the July 1, 2014 – July 1, 2015 period when the growth rate registered 0.73%.
With these numbers come the ability to project which states will gain and lose congressional seats in 2020 reapportionment. The national reapportionment will be calculated and announced after the 2020 census is completed. The states will receive their congressional seat quota a year from now, with a release typically coming during the period between Christmas and New Year’s.
If current projections prove correct, Texas looks to gain three seats, Florida two, with Arizona, Colorado, Montana, North Carolina, and Oregon each slated to gain one. The losing states look to be Alabama, California, Illinois, Michigan, Minnesota, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, and West Virginia.
If these projections prove true, California will lose a seat for the first time in history. It’s also realistic that the actual totals could yield a two-seat loss for Illinois or New York, and possibly both. Right now, it appears ten congressional seats will change states, but that number could grow. Usually, the actual numbers tend to differ slightly from the early published projections.
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