August 10, 2016

DATE: AUGUST 10, 2016


In Minnesota, national Democrats are desperately hoping that a corporate executive turned liberal stalwart, a late entrant who is badly outmatched, and a 60’s radical will bolster their fleeting hopes of recapturing a House majority. Unfortunately for them, Republican candidates across the state offer strong contrasts to the failed Obama-Clinton agenda that the DFL candidates have embraced, and enter the general election poised to make their case to voters.


MN-02: Jason Lewis, R vs. Angie Craig, D


Jason Lewis provides 2nd District families a competing vision to the failed offerings of the Obama-Clinton-Craig agenda of bigger government, endless spending, and a feckless foreign policy. While Angie Craig has endorsed the liberal policies of Barack Obama and  Hillary Clinton, Lewis will give voters the chance to repudiate the disastrous policies of the last seven and a half years.


Angie Craig fully embraced the most liberal fringes of the Democratic agenda in order to secure the DFL endorsement and now will be forced to answer for her extreme positions in the general election. The party cleared the field for Craig, hoping to keep her hidden behind press releases and away from reporters, but now she must proactively make her case to GOP-leaning voters who have sent a Republican to Congress for the last 15 years. Don’t expect a warm reception. 


Overview: PVI: R+2; Obama 49.07% – Romney 49.01%; the Cook Political Report rates this race as “Toss Up” and the Rothenberg & Gonzales Political Report rates this race as “Toss Up/Tilt Democrat.”   

MN-03: Erik Paulsen, R vs. Terri Bonoff, D


Erik Paulsen enters the general election with an impressive $3.2 million cash on hand and a history of convincing wins in this GOP-leaning district. Paulsen is a perfect fit, with a record and temperament that matches his district. With his efforts on the Ways and Means Committee and consistent presence on the ground, Paulsen has shown that he is willing to do the hard work that will allow him to win again in November.


Terri Bonoff is a last-minute candidate whose only plan for victory is to hope for a wave that isn’t coming. Bonoff’s record of tax hikes will haunt her as she tries to appeal to fiscally conservative voters who have overwhelmingly backed Palusen in the past. While Democrats have touted her candidacy, Bonoff has just over 1/6 of Paulsen’s war chest and will struggle mightily to make up ground quickly enough to be competitive.


Overview: PVI: R+2; Obama 49.61% – Romney 48.79%; the Cook Political Report rates this race as “Lean Republican” and the Rothenberg & Gonzales Political Report rates this race as “Republican Favored.”   


MN-08: Stewart Mills, R vs. Rick Nolan, D


Stewart Mills enters the general election as a battle-tested candidate after coming within 1.4% points of unseating Nolan in 2014. With a more favorable environment at the top of the ticket and hard-earned experience from his first campaign, Mills is now a full-time candidate who is taking his message of fiscal discipline and a robust national security platform all across the 8th District. As a job creator, community leader, and stark contrast to Nolan’s extremism, Mills will take the fight to Nolan even more thoroughly than he did as a first time candidate last cycle.


Nolan’s extreme record on national security issues is a legitimate liability as ISIS continues to inspire violence around the world and pledges to target Americans at home and abroad. The rhetoric of a 60’s radical may have worked for Nolan in the past, but 8th District voters won’t stand for his head-in-the-sand approach to the dangers facing the United States. Additionally, Nolan will be forced to answer for the Minnesota DFL’s anti-mining stance and Hillary Clinton’s promise to put miners “out of business,” a message sure to fall flat in the Iron Range where Nolan must overperform if he hopes to win.


Overview: PVI: D+1; Obama 51.7% – Romney 46.22%; the Cook Political Report rates this race as “Lean Democratic” and the Rothenberg & Gonzales Political Report rates this race as “Democrat Favored.



The following are the unofficial results from Tuesday’s primary election in Minnesota.

*Indicates Winner determined by AP


MN-02 – GOP  

292 of 292 Precincts Reporting (100%)

Jason Lewis*                                                          (49%)
Darlene Miller                                                        (31%)
John Howe                                                              (14%)
Matt Erickson                                                         (7%)


MN-02 – DEM   

Angie Craig*                                               Uncontested


MN-03 – GOP    

Erik Paulsen*                                              Uncontested


MN-03 – DEM   

Terri Bonoff*                                              Uncontested


MN-08 – GOP  

Stewart Mills*                                            Uncontested


MN-08 – DEM   

Rick Nolan*                                                 Uncontested