DFL endorses Ritchie, Otto, Swanson


Minnesota Democrats have endorsed three state constitutional officers for re-election to second terms.

During today’s opening session of the state DFL convention, delegates backed Mark Ritchie for Secretary of State, Rebecca Otto for Auditor and Lori Swanson for Attorney General without opposition.

We’ll post the audio of the speeches when it’s available.




Republicans have been frequent critics of all three incumbents. They recently blasted Swanson for not joining an lawsuit filed by other states to challenge health care reform. Ritchie came under fire for his handling of the 2008 U.S. Senate race recount. But during his lengthy acceptance speech, Ritchie described the recount as a point of pride for Minnesota.

“Those who want to rewrite history, it will be difficult for them in this climate to rewrite that history because we were so transparent,” Ritchie said.

Republican Party of Minnesota Chairman Tony Sutton issued a statement after each endorsement.

On Ritchie:

“As the most partisan secretary of state in Minnesota history, Mark Ritchie has done tremendous damage to our state’s once sterling national reputation for fair and open elections. During the 2008 election, Ritchie’s failure to properly train local election officials resulted in unacceptable disparities in how absentee ballots were counted across the state. In addition, Ritchie was caught using state resources for his campaign and lied about it. To accomplish the kind of real reform Minnesota’s election system needs, it’s time to return this failed ACORN crony to the private sector.”

On Otto:

“With even Rebecca Otto conceding that she gets no respect, it’s time Minnesota once again had a visible, active, and strong taxpayer watchdog as state auditor. Under Otto’s mismanagement, audits are now routinely submitted six months past their due date. Otto has been so ineffective that one of her own staffers is running against her. In November, Minnesotans need to replace this invisible and self-identified ‘Rodney Dangerfield’ with a real leader who can get results.”

On Swanson:

“Lori Swanson has let Minnesotans down as attorney general. With her office in constant turmoil, former staffers have repeatedly spoken out about unethical and unlawful behavior under her watch. Her office is more interested in generating headlines than helping Minnesotans. Even the reliably pro-Democrat AFSCME labor union has refused to support her for reelection. Swanson has also wasted taxpayer money by spending $400,000 on lavish office renovations on things like extravagant solid oak doors. Minnesotans need a real advocate as attorney general, not a power hungry publicity hound.”

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