Minnesota

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Minnesota is home to many of the 20th century's most progressive leaders and most civic-minded citizens. Progressives from diverse backgrounds such as Hubert Humphrey, Eugene McCarty, Walter Mondale, Paul Wellstone, Betty McCollum and Keith Ellison have represented Minnesota. Yet, counter to that progressive tradition, there has been a long standing conservative movement, augmented in the last several decades by suburban population booms. In electing Rudy Boschwitz (U.S. Senate 1978-1990), Arne Carlson (Governor 1990-1998), and Jesse Ventura (Governor 1998-2002), to Norm Coleman (US Senate 2002-present) and Tim Pawlenty (Governor 2002-present), Minnesota voters demonstrated their willingness to choose conservatives when they are not given a strong progressive choice.

Minnesota Legislature
Senate
Democrats
Republicans
2006 38 29
2008 45 22
2010
30
37
Today 28 39
House
Democrats
Republicans
2006
66
68
2008
85
49
2010
62
72
Today 61 73

Recent elections have reflected a progressive trend, but a continued effort is necessary to nurture and sustain the strong and deeply-rooted progressive movement in the state. Progressive Majority is uniquely suited to the task of finding, training, and supporting progressive candidates who appeal to the state's rich progressive history. After all, we see our job to bring more "Paul Wellstones" into office.

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Important Dates
Go to the Minnesota Secretary of State website to find out important dates and filing deadlines. 
Tom DeGree

Minnesota
State Representative, District 39B
2012
Challenger
http://www.tomdegree.com
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Thomas DeGree is running for State Representative in District 39B. Thomas is a union member with the St. Paul Federation of Teachers. He’s seen how Republicans are running Minnesota, instead of working together, they’re trying to pass things through amendments and balancing the budget on the back of schools. He’s been a public school teacher for over 20 years and owns a restaurant that employs 70 people.

John Hoffman

Minnesota
State Senate, District 36
2012
Challenger
http://johnhoffmanforsenate.com/
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John knew something needed to be done about the incumbent after the incumbent came out strongly in favor of Right to Work legislation. This incumbent had been unresponsive to his districts needs; instead he has focused on advocacy for anti-worker legislation. John has been serving his community since 2005, when he was elected to the Anoka Hennepin School Board, the largest district in Minnesota, where he now serves as Vice-Chair. He takes his knowledge of education and work to ensure that Republicans stop balancing the budget by cutting school funding.

Ken Moen

Minnesota
State Senate, District 26
2012
Challenger
http://kenmoen.org/
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Ken Moen is running for State Senate in District 26. Ken has been involved in politics for a long time on
the campaign side, but when someone was needed to step up and defeat Carla Nelson Ken stepped
forward to do so. He’s running because what’s happening in Minnesota can’t continue. Republicans
forced a shutdown because they wouldn’t adopt a realistic budget and are trying to subvert the process
and avoid Governor Dayton’s veto by pushing constitutional amendments, instead of passing laws. Ken
has deep connections to his district. He earned a law degree and in 1977 he was hired by the City of
Rochester to be an assistant City Attorney. In 2001, he founded his own law firm where he works with
individuals and businesses in land use. He has represented numerous townships in his district and the
electrical cooperative that serves his district. These connections to local communities are why Ken wants
to serve in the state legislature, so get these townships the support they need.

Tracine Asberry

Minnesota
Minneapolis Board of Education, District 6
2012
Open Seat
http://www.tracineasberry.org
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From Tracine's experience as an involved Southwest mother of three, she knows that parents are the first educators of their children.  She believes that all families should be treated equitably and have opportunities to engage in decision-making regarding their children's education.  During Tracine's time as an MPS teacher, she employed innovative approaches to family involvement.  She worked directly with students and families in order to promote equal, accessible, high quality education.

Jim Carlson

Minnesota
State Senate, District 51
2012
Challenger
http://www.carlsonforsenate.org
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He is a former member of the Minnesota Senate who represented District 38 (now 51).  He was first elected to the State Senate in 2006.  Jim finds the anti-women, anti-voter, anti-education agenda being pushed by Republicans repugnant.  With his background as a professional engineer at 3M and Ecolab and his experience in the State Senate, Jim is now pushing a progressive agenda in the State Senate.

Chuck Berg

Minnesota
State Representative, District 55A
2012
Open Seat
http://www.chuckberg.com
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Chuck Berg is running for State Representative in District 55A. Chuck owns a small business, Riverside Computers, where he provides technology solutions to non-profit organizations. In 2005, he ran for Shakopee School Board and defeated the sitting incumbent. He rose to become Chair of the School Board. During his time as School Board Chair, Shakopee Schools remained fiscally strong and the quality of education was improved. He is an active member of Rotary International, in which he served as President of his club and District Governor for Rotary International District 5950. Chuck is a veteran of the United States Navy, serving for five and a half years.

John Bruno

Minnesota
State Representative, District 39A
2012
Challenger
edit

John Bruno is running for State Representative in District 39A. Bruno has worked in both the public and private sectors. Early in his career, he worked with migrant workers and at a residential house for teen boys. He has been heavily involved with the Democratic-Federal Labor Party, serving as Precinct Caucus Convener, District Director and County Chair. John is a veteran of the United States Marine Corp.

Peter Perovich

Minnesota
State Senate, District 35
2012
Open Seat
http://www.peterperovich.org
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Peter Perovich is running for State Senate in District 35. Peter grew up in Anoka and worked for Dairy Fresh Foods Dairy in New Brighton. He joined the local Teamsters Union and earned his real estate license. After moving to the Twin Cities, Peter began working in the mortgage industry where he learned first-hand about the financial struggles people confront on a daily basis. Peter has led in various organizations state-wide, including serving as President of the Minnesota Bass Federation, Member of the Board of Directors for Anglers for Habitat, and Anglers for Young Anglers.

Melisa Franzen

Minnesota
State Senate, District 49
2012
Open Seat
http://www.melisafranzen.com
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Melisa Franzen has a proven track record of bringing communities together to advance issues. An attorney, Melisa serves on the Board of Directors for the Girl Scouts of Minnesota and Wisconsin River Valleys and President of the Minnesota Hispanic Bar Association. She also volunteers with Neighborhood House, Center for Urban and Regional Affairs, Centro Legal, the Saint Paul Foundation, and Minnesota Women Lawyers.

Alice Johnson

Minnesota
State Senate, District 37
2012
Open Seat
http://www.alicejohnsonformnsenate.com
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As a resident of Spring Lake Park for 45 years, Alice has been an active member of the community. From 1986-2000, Alice Johnson served in the Minnesota House of Representatives. While in the Minnesota House, Alice chaired the K-12 Education Finance Division and served on the Transportation, Education and Tax committees. Additionally, Alice serves on the Volunteer Fire Board and on the Anoka-Ramsey Community College Foundation Board.

Zachary Dorholt

Minnesota
State Representative, District 14B
2012
Open Seat
http://www.zacharydorholt.com
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Zachary is a native Minnesotan, raised in Maple Grove. He graduated from St. Cloud State University with a B.A. in Community Development and a M.S. in Counseling Psychology. He has been active in Democratic politics for a number of years, working on a number of local campaigns. Zachary also ran for the State House of Representatives in 2010.

Roberta Gibbons

Minnesota
State Representative, District 57A
2012
Challenger
http://www.robertagibbons.org
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Roberta Gibbons is a lifelong Minnesotan. As an insurance agent for many years, she has advocated for individuals and small businesses by ensuring they get the best value for their dollar and avoid financial burdens.

Jeff Wilfahrt

Minnesota
State Representative, District 57B
2012
Open Seat
http://www.wilfahrt.org
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Jeff Wilfahrt is running for State Representative in District 57B. Jeff is a lifelong Minnesotan, raised in New Ulm. He later developed a small business in 1992. Jeff came in politics after the GOP put forth a marriage definition ballot initiative for the 2012 elections. In February 2011, Jeff’s eldest son, Andrew, died serving his country in Afghanistan. He also advocated for the signing of the end of "Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell."

Jerry Newton

Minnesota
State Representative, District 37A
2012
Challenger
http://www.jerrynewton.org
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After college, Jerry Newton enlisted in the United States Army, serving for 23 years. Upon returning, Jerry managed a small business and became heavily involved in the community. From 1994-2000, Jerry served on the Coon Rapids City Council. While serving on the Council, Jerry promoted development of local businesses and worked to improve safety. He also served on the Anoka Hennepin School Board; where he worked to raise education standards and add the International Baccalaureate (IB) program. Jerry was elected to the Minnesota House of Representatives in 2008. While in the House, he served as a member of the House K-12 Education Policy Oversight Committee, and the Agriculture, Rural Economies, and Veterans Affairs Subcommittee for the Veterans Affairs Division.

Joe Tatalovich

Minnesota
School Board
2011
Challenger
St. Louis Park
http://www.joeforschoolboard.org
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Joe Tatalovich has worked hard to help the schools in St. Louis Park. He has served as Chair of the legislative action committee and the Community Education Advisory Council. For the past seven years he has worked as a math tutor in four different schools. As Chair of the Vote Yes Committee he helped pass a bond and levy referendum in 2008, this helped him build a network of supporters for his school board campaign. Tatalovich is running to give back to his community and to ensure that his children Eli and Emma are able to attend and thrive in schools that are even better for the future.

John Nephew
Minnesota
Maplewood City Council
2011
Incumbent
edit

Progressive Majority previously endorsed candidate running for re-election. 

Melvin Carter
Minnesota
St Paul City Council- Ward 1
2011
Incumbent
edit

Progressive Majority previously endorsed candidate running for re-election. 

Kimberly Ross
Minnesota
Eden Prairie School Board
2011
Incumbent
edit

Progressive Majority previously endorsed candidate running for re-election. 

Pamela Rykken-Scheie
Minnesota
St. Louis Park School Board
2011
Incumbent
edit

Progressive Majority previously endorsed candidate running for re-election. 

Greg Lemke
Minnesota
Moorhead City Council, Ward 4
2011
Incumbent
edit

Progressive Majority previously endorsed candidate running for re-election. 

Becky Fink

Minnesota
Anoka County Board - District 5
2010
Open Seat
Anoka County
http://sommerfink.web.officelive.com/default.aspx
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Becky Fink is lifelong Anoka County resident and has been an anti-homelessness advocate, DFL activist and volunteer for more than 30 years. Becky is running for Anoka County Board in 2010. Becky is running to replace conservative incumbent Scott LeDoux - who has resigned his post due to progressive ALS. Becky has a terrific vision to ensure that everyone in Anoka County can thrive and would be an outstanding addition to the Anoka County Board.

Rena Moran

Minnesota
State House - District 65A
2010
Open Seat
Ramsey County
http://www.vote4rena.org/
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Rena Moran is a community organizer and dynamic progressive. If elected she will become the only African-American woman in the legislature. Rena has been at the forefront of organizing in the African-American community in St. Paul and the immediate suburbs. She is a former Wellstone Organizing Fellow and a graduate of the Organizing Apprenticeship Project. She is a true grassroots leader in her community and faces both primary and general election challenges from moderates of both parties.Rena has a remarkable life story and an unrivaled commitment to grassroots organizing. If she wins, she would be the only woman of color in the 134 member Minnesota House.

Hussein Samatar

Minnesota
Minneapolis School Board - District 3
2010
Open Seat
Hennepin County
http://www.samatarforschoolboard.org/
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Hussein Samatar is a banker and community organizer and the founder and executive director of the African Development Center (ADC). ADC is an entrepreneurial nonprofit organization that works with the African communities in Minnesota to start and sustain businesses, build wealth, and promote community reinvestment. Hussein formerly served on the now defunct Minneapolis Library Board and is a leader in Minneapolis. If elected, he will become the first Somali-American to serve on a Minnesota school board.

Eric Peterson

Minnesota
Mayor
2010
Challenger
Wyoming
http://wyomingforachange.com/
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Eric Peterson is an artist, web designer, and real estate agent in Wyoming, MN. He has decided to run for Mayor because he believes that Wyoming has lacked leaders who actually listen to the needs and concerns of residents. Eric has been one of the leading progressives in his community for many years, and this race presents an important opportunity to bring new leadership in this northern suburban city.

Doug Schroeder
Minnesota
City Council
2010
Open Seat
Otsego
edit

Doug Schroeder is a union member and a pro-labor progressive running for City Council in Otsego, MN. Doug is a member of the Bricklayers and Allied Craftworkers Union, and currently serves as their Business Representative. Doug has been extremely involved locally in his community, helping with numerous local projects and building a strong reputation as a community leader.