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Minnesota Republicans reckoning with midterm losses ahead of 2024

Talking Points: Minnesota Republicans reckoning with midterm losses ahead of 2024
Talking Points: Minnesota Republicans reckoning with midterm losses ahead of 2024 02:21

MINNEAPOLIS -- The election results were a disappointment for Minnesota Republicans after they failed to capture any of the statewide races and they lost control of the State Senate.

Minnesota Republicans have not won a statewide race since 2006, and this midterm election was supposed to be their breakthrough. But Republicans not only lost the governor and secretary of state races, they also lost two races they thought they could win: the attorney general's race and the race for state auditor. 

Even worse, Republicans lost control of the Minnesota Senate, giving the DFL a rare trifecta -- control of both houses of the legislature and the governor's Office. 

As in past elections, some Republicans are pointing the finger at the party's nominating process. Every year, about 2,000 delegates gather as they did this year in Rochester to nominate their candidates. And every year, the candidates they choose turn out to be too conservative to win in the general election. 

While there is a primary in August, Republican leaders have discouraged anyone from challenging the party's nominees. That formula played out again this year as Independent and suburban voters rejected GOP standard bearers.   

Minnesota GOP Chair David Hann reflects on party's midterm performance 05:38

Minnesota GOP Chair David Hann was a guest on WCCO Sunday Morning at 10:30 a.m. 

"There's no perfect process, and I do think that there are things in that process that do need to be reformed, and we're certainly going to be talking to the legislature about some things that we think can be improved on," Hann said. "But as it stands today, this is the system that we have that the legislature has mandated, and we have to live with it."

One bright spots for Republicans was the decisive win by Rep. Brad Finstad in the 1st Congressional District. Finstad will now have a full two-year term. He succeeds Rep. Jim Hagedorn. who died of cancer in February.

Other bright spots for the GOP: In the former DFL stronghold of northern Minnesota, Republican Pete Stauber won easily, as did Rep. Michelle Fischbach in the western 7th Congressional District. 

You can watch WCCO Sunday Morning every Sunday with Esme Murphy and Mike Augustyniak at 6 a.m. and 10:30 a.m.

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