On Friday, DFL Party Chair Brian Melendez emphasized in a press briefing that the DFL Party has had recent success in getting the endorsed candidate to the general election. The topic came up because the endorsed candidate is likely to face at least three other candidates in the August primary. Former U.S. Sen. Mark Dayton, former Minnesota House Minority Leader Matt Entenza and Ramsey County Attorney Susan Gaertner all say they’ll run in the primary regardless of Saturday’s endorsing convention.
Melendez said only one DFL endorsed candidate didn’t face a primary challenge in the past 21 gubernatorial contests (Wendell Anderson in 1970). He also said the party will rally behind the endorsed candidate immediately after the endorsing convention.
“I think the people are who thinking that the party’s endorsement has the same meaning now as it had in the 1980s,” Melendez said. “I think they are going to be very disturbingly surprised. We back up our endorsement these days and we win.”
The party also released a chart outlining how each endorsed gov candidate fared in the primary and how they did in the general election. The endorsed candidate won all but three of the primary challenges. Check it here:
Year Endorsed Won Primary Won Election # Opp. 2006 Mike Hatch Mike Hatch Tim Pawlenty 2 2002 Roger Moe Roger Moe Tim Pawlenty 1 1998 Mike Freeman Skip Humphrey Jesse Ventura 5 1994 John Marty John Marty Arne Carlson 3 1990 Rudy Perpich Rudy Perpich Arne Carlson 2 1986 Rudy Perpich Rudy Perpich Rudy Perpich 4 1982 Warren Spannaus Rudy Perpich Rudy Perpich 2 1978 Rudy Perpich Rudy Perpich Al Quie 1 1974 Wendell Anderson Wendell Anderson Wendell Anderson 1 1970 Wendell Anderson Wendell Anderson Wendell Anderson 0 1966 A.M. (Sandy) Keith Karl Rolvaag Harold LeVander 4 1962 Karl Rolvaag Karl Rolvaag Karl Rolvaag 1 1960 Orville Freeman Orville Freeman Elmer Andersen 1 1958 Orville Freeman Orville Freeman Orville Freeman 1 1956 Orville Freeman Orville Freeman Orville Freeman 3 1954 Orville Freeman Orville Freeman Orville Freeman 1 1952 Orville Freeman Orville Freeman C. Elmer Anderson 1 1950 Harry Peterson Harry Peterson Luther Youngdahl 4 1948 Charles Halstad Charles Halstad Luther Youngdahl 5 1946 Harold Barker Harold Barker Luther Youngdahl 4 1944 Byron Allen Byron Allen Edward John Thye 2
Source: Minnesota Democratic Farmer Labor Party
Thanks to MPR’s Than Tibbetts for making the chart look good on the site.