Election: State roundup

Published 10:08 pm Tuesday, August 9, 2016

Somali activist wins Minneapolis district Democratic primary

MINNEAPOLIS — A Somali activist could become the first Somali-American lawmaker in the nation after unseating one of the Minnesota Legislature’s longest-serving members in a Democratic primary.

Ilhan Omar defeated 22-term Rep. Phyllis Kahn in Tuesday’s nominating contest in the heavily Democratic Minneapolis district.

The district spans the University of Minnesota and is home to a large population of immigrants from Somalia and other East African countries. Omar argued that the district needs a fresher face that better represents the diversity and needs of the area.

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Omar is a political activist and former aide to the Minneapolis City Council.

Kahn has spent 44 years in the Legislature.

No fourth term for GOP Sen. Nienow

MINNEAPOLIS — Republican state Sen. Sean Nienow has lost his bid for a fourth term.

Nienow lost Tuesday’s primary to challenger Mark Koran, a sales manager from Chisago County.

Nienow, of Cambridge, had a reputation as a fiscal conservative but filed for bankruptcy in 2014.

Hudson advances in Supreme Court race

MINNEAPOLIS — Minnesota Supreme Court Justice Natalie Hudson has advanced to the November election after winning a primary.

Hudson was the top vote-getter in Tuesday’s non-partisan primary for the state’s highest court. She faced attorney Craig Foss and failed 2014 Supreme Court candidate Michelle MacDonald. The top two candidates move on to the general election.

Gov. Mark Dayton appointed Hudson to the bench last year after serving more than a decade on the state’s Court of Appeals. The state constitution requires appointees to face voters for re-election to a six-year term.

MacDonald lost a 2014 election to the court after a drunken driving arrest came to light. She had been endorsed by the Republican Party.

Ellison eases to primary victory in 5th

MINNEAPOLIS — U.S. Rep. Keith Ellison has won the Democratic nomination for another run in Minnesota’s 5th District.

Ellison defeated challengers Lee Bauer and Gregg Iverson in Tuesday’s Democratic primary. Ellison has represented Minneapolis and its western suburbs in Congress since 2007.

Iverson previously ran for Minneapolis mayor and challenged Ellison in 2012. Bauer ran against Ellison in 2014 as an Independence Party candidate.

Ellison will face Republican nominee Frank Drake in the November election as he seeks a sixth term in Congress.

Emmer easily wins GOP primary in 6th

MINNEAPOLIS — U.S. Rep. Tom Emmer has easily advanced as he runs for a second term in Congress.

Emmer beat A.J. Kern and Patrick Munro to get the GOP nod in Tuesday’s primary.

Emmer is a former state lawmaker and 2010 gubernatorial candidate. He succeeded former Rep. Michele Bachmann in the heavily conservative 6th District in 2014.

Snyder wins Dem primary to face Emmer

MINNEAPOLIS — Democrats have chosen an iron worker and Army veteran to challenge U.S. Rep. Tom Emmer in November.

David Snyder won the DFL nomination in Tuesday’s primary by defeating Bob Helland. Snyder had the party’s endorsement heading into the race.

Emmer is the heavy favorite heading into the general election as he seeks a second term. The 6th District stretches from St. Cloud and east across the state and leans conservative.

Hughes wins GOP primary to tackle Peterson

MINNEAPOLIS — U.S. Rep. Collin Peterson has a Republican challenger for November.

Dave Hughes won Tuesday’s GOP primary to face the longtime Democrat lawmaker in the general election. Hughes beat Amanda Hinson to capture the party’s nod for the seat.

Hughes is a political newcomer and retired Air Force officer who served in the Middle East and eastern Europe. He won the party’s endorsement in April over Hinson.

Though the northwestern Minnesota district leans Republican, Peterson has easily weathered GOP challengers since taking office in 1991.

McCollum skips past primary toward 9th term

MINNEAPOLIS — Rep. Betty McCollum has cleared a Democratic challenger as she seeks ninth term in Congress.

McCollum defeated Steve Carlson in the DFL’s primary Tuesday. She’s the clear favorite to win the general election in the heavily Democratic 4th District.

McCollum has represented the eastern Twin Cities district since 2001. Carlson has run several times for public office, including a 2014 campaign for the U.S. Senate as an Independence Party candidate.

Moran turns back challenge from Black Lives activist

MINNEAPOLIS — One of Minnesota’s few black lawmakers has defeated a primary challenge from a Black Lives Matter activist.

Rep. Rena Moran beat St. Paul Black Lives Matter leader Rashad Turner in Tuesday’s DFL primary. Moran is a St. Paul Democrat and one of three black lawmakers at the Legislature.

Persistent racial economic gaps and racially charged encounters with law enforcement have fueled the rising political power of groups like Black Lives Matter. Turner, who is also black, argued Moran hasn’t done enough to address those issues during her three terms at the Capitol.

Moran expressed dismay that Turner would focus on one of Minnesota’s few black legislators. She won the Democratic party’s endorsement for the St. Paul seat.

Turner has been a visible figure in Black Lives Matter rallies and protests.

Ryan wins GOP primary to face McCollum

MINNEAPOLIS — Republicans have chosen a St. Paul businessman to take on Democratic Rep. Betty McCollum.

Greg Ryan won Tuesday’s GOP nominating contest in a three-way field for the 4th Congressional District. He beat Nikolay Bey and Gene Rechtzigel.

Ryan owns and runs Ryan Plumbing and Heating in St. Paul, a longtime family business. He took over the operation as a young man when his father was shot and killed during an armed robbery.

McCollum has represented the eastern Twin Cities metropolitan area in Congress since 2001. She’s the clear favorite to win a ninth term in the heavily Democratic district in November.