Filings have closed in the race to replace Tony Sertich in Minnesota House District 5B. The seat was vacated when Sertich resigned to take a job in Gov. Mark Dayton’s Administration. Dayton appointed Sertich to the Iron Range Resources Board.
It should be no surprise that there will be a DFL Primary since the district has a heavy DFL index. Five candidates will compete for the DFL endorsement: Jeff Kletscher, Carly Melin, Raymond Lee Pierce, Shelley Robinson and John J. Spanish.
Melin appears to be the most active to date. She works for the Minnesota State Judiciary and is a resident of Hibbing. Her campaign has sent out several updates including an endorsement from former DFL Rep. Joe Begich. Former DFL state Sen. Jerry Janezich is also co-chairing her campaign. The Duluth News Tribune says she’s also a former intern for Sertich.
Kletscher is no stranger to the State Capitol. He’s been active in efforts to protect Local Government Aid for his city. He’s the president of the Minnesota Association of Small Cities and is a board member for the League of Minnesota Cities.
Shelley Robinson is the Executive Director of Range Center, Inc., a nonprofit that serves adults and children with disabilities on the Iron Range. Robinson is also a member of the IRRRB.
Paul Jacobson is running as a Republican. He received 33 percent of the vote when he challenged Sertich in November.
Cynthia Kafut-Hagen of Hibbing is running as a member of the Independence Party.
Gov. Dayton has scheduled the primary election for February 1st. The General Election will be on February 15th.
I suggest you check out Minnesota Brown if you want a more in-depth look at the candidates running. Aaron Brown is doing a good job of tracking the race.