Quick endorsement in First District
The First District Republican endorsing convention was quite a contrast this year to the 2012 marathon that resulted in no endorsement, and is blamed by many Republicans for the Republicans’ loss to U.S. Rep. Tim Walz in the general election.
In 2012, after 14 hours and 23 ballots, delegates ran out of time with Allen Quist and Mike Parry deadlocked. Parry and Quist bashed each other through the primary campaign. Quist, the primary winner, lost by a 57-42 margin.
This year, the issue was decided after three ballots. State Rep. Mike Benson dropped out after the second ballot when it was apparent Jim Hagedorn and Aaron Miller were the frontrunners. He threw his support to Miller, who took a commanding lead after the third ballot. Hagedorn then withdrew from the race.
If Republicans can unify behind Miller, he should be able to mount a more challenging campaign this year against Walz, who has established himself as a moderate Democrat and a strong supporter of veterans issues.