Sen. Geoff Michel, R-Edina, says he’s not seeking reelection. Michel, who has served ten years in the Minnesota Senate, said he couldn’t commit to serving another four years. He said his family obligations are taking greater importance.
“I have four daughters under the age of 16,” Michel said. “I haven’t been around much over the last ten years. I want to be better to my family.”
Michel said he started thinking about his decision last summer when the state government shut down. His announcement comes just months after he revealed that he approached Senate personnel about an “inappropriate relationship” between then Senate Majority Leader Amy Koch and an unnamed staffer. Koch resigned her leadership position and isn’t seeking reelection. Michel said the incident has nothing to do with his decision.
Michel said his greatest accomplishments were working with the University of Minnesota and helping the school build a new football stadium. He was also the author of the Abigail Taylor Pool Safety Act that required safer drains to prevent suction and drowning injuries in pools. He was also instrumental in helping Republicans take control of the Minnesota Senate for the first time in 38 years.
Michel is current chair of the Senate Jobs and Economic Growth Committee.
He says he’s confident Republicans will hold on to his seat. Democrats, however, see the seat as a possible pick-up.
Here’s the letter Michel sent out to delegates:
Ten years feels just about right.
Thank you for the honor of representing you in the Minnesota State Senate. This is the best senate district in the state and it is now even better with the new redistricting maps.
After ten years and three terms in the state senate, I will not be seeking reelection this November.
Annie, our four daughters and I have been discussing our options since the state shutdown last summer. I have also been speaking with my colleagues at Securian Financial Group. Both my family and my employer have been very patient, flexible, and supportive of me for the past ten years. It’s time for me to return their support and focus on a family future that is getting busier every year and may include four college tuitions.
We cannot commit to another four-year term. I also want to allow time for candidates to emerge before the endorsing convention at the end of the month.
I plan to finish strong and focus on the fundamental fiscal and economic concerns facing our state during the remaining months of this legislative session.
Thank you for all your support and kindness over the past decade.