Democratic favorite Tim Walz won the gubernatorial primary against Minnesota Attorney General Lori Swanson and Minnesota Rep. Erin Murphy late Tuesday evening.
Walz edged out a victory over his opponents with 43 percent of the vote at the time the race was called with 70 percent of the precincts reporting at the time of publication.
Tim Walz, who was favored to win and is a retired Army National Guard command sergeant major, has been Minnesota’s 1st Congressional District representative since 2007. He is the highest-ranking enlisted soldier ever to serve in Congress and decided not to seek re-election. He raised about $2.4 million, MinnPost reported.
Swanson decided not to run for re-election for attorney general, opting for a chance to become the first female governor of Minnesota and raised just over $600,000, according to MinnPost.
Murphy was the House majority leader in Minnesota from 2015 to 2016, before the Democrats lost control of the Minnesota House in 2016 election. She raised about $960,000, MinnPost reported.
Democratic Gov. Mark Dayton, isn’t seeking re-election due his battle with prostate cancer, which caused him to collapse during a State of the State Address on Jan. 23. (RELATED: MN Governor Calls GOP Tax Cuts ‘Crumbs,’ Vetos Bill)
Minnesota is sometimes labeled a “purple state,” given its almost equal mix of Republicans and Democrats. Democrats in the state, technically called the Democratic-Farmer-Labor Party (DFL), have a long history of narrowly defeating Republicans in state-wide elections like presidential, gubernatorial and senate races.
While President Richard Nixon, in 1972, was the last Republican presidential candidate to win the state, President Donald Trump lost by only about 44,000 votes — about 1.5 percent of the total vote.
Walz will face Republican candidate Jeff Johnson in the general election on November 6.
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