By Steve Karnosky – The Associated Press
ROCHESTER, MN (AP) – Minnesota Republicans gathered again Saturday to endorse an appeal candidate Democratic Governor Tim Walz In the November elections, however, the five candidates came under heavy pressure in the early polls, showing that they all garnered loyalist pockets of support.
Dr. Scott Jensena vaccine skeptic and former state senator, led early but narrowly by more than 29% in the second ballot. Business Executive Kendall Koals He took second place with over 28%, followed by Lexington Mayor Mike Murphy with 19%, then dermatologist Neil Shah with almost 13%, Former Senate Majority Leader Paul Gazelica By just over 10%. The candidate needs 60% to win the endorsement.
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All have pledged to honor the party’s endorsement and relinquish the right to run in the August 9 Republican primary, assuming there is no dead end. Former President Donald Trump, who remains an influential force within the party, has not endorsed anyone in the Minnesota races.
The 2,200 delegates had to complete their work by the 6 p.m. deadline Saturday to vacate the Rochester Mayo Civic Center, but Relatively fast and smooth online voting process on Friday It seems to reduce the chances of running out of time and leaving without consent. Delegates and party leaders hope that at least one of their candidates will become The first Republican elected to office at the state level Since the re-election of Governor Tim Pawlenty in 2006.
Jensen, the family doctor from Chaska, got his first start in the race and made the most money. He has built a following nationwide as he frames his doubts about the COVID-19 vaccine — and his opposition to masking mandates and closing schools and businesses — as support for medical freedom. In his speech, he emphasized his efforts as a state senator to stand up against the Wales administration’s handling of the pandemic.
“Everyone in this room somewhat understood that Tim Walz had failed. He did. But who would step forward? Who would serve for the benefit, security, and protection of all people? Who would help Minnesota find the way back to be the shining and shining star of the North?” he asked. Jensen in a video preceding his speech, “The answer is you.”
Qualls highlighted his rise from poverty, to going to college, to becoming an army officer and business leader. His life, he said, is testimony to the failure of the Democrats’ agenda and shows that the American dream is still alive.
“The Radical Left thinks I shouldn’t be here. The media doesn’t think I should be here. Tim Walz wishes I wasn’t here at all,” Coles said to loud applause. black, and that we are not black, and we did not vote for him. Well, after Donald J. Trump voted for president – both times – and I’m still black. And I’m still a Republican. And I’d be Joe Biden and Tim Walz’s worst nightmare.”
Gazelka, the senator from East Gail Lake, stressed his support for law enforcement in the wake of sometimes violent unrest and a rise in crime rates after Police kill George Floyd In 2020. Among his supporters on stage was Brian Peters, Executive Director of the Peace Officers Association and Minnesota Police.
Gazelica reminded delegates that President Joe Biden’s approval ratings are falling, inflation is at a 40-year high, gasoline prices are on the rise, and that Russian President Vladimir Putin has put the world on edge over his war in Ukraine.
“Here in Minnesota we have Tim Walz who overreacted about the pandemic,” Gazelka said, pausing to ask the crowd to shout amen. “He underestimated his reaction to the riots.”
On Friday night’s fourth ballot, the Congress endorsed Business attorney Jim Schultz to the Attorney General, an office that Minnesota Republicans have not won since 1968. He hopes to oust current President Keith Ellison, The former congressman who led the prosecution team Which won the conviction of former officer Derek Chauvin for the murder of Floyd.
defeat Schultz Doug Wardlow, party nominee for 2018 He is a general counsel at MyPillow. That company’s CEO, Mike Lindell, rose to national prominence perpetuating the false claim that Trump won the 2020 election. Former Washington District Judge Tad Judd and attorney Lynn Torgerson also lost. Former lawmaker Dennis Smith plans to challenge Schultz in the Republican primary.
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