It’s 8 p.m., and the polls have closed across Minnesota.
Tonight, we’ll be keeping tabs on several important primary races on the Capitol View blog, including contests in the 1st and 8th congressional districts, and several hotly contested legislative districts.
If you haven’t been following these races closely, here are a few to watch:
Minnesota’s 1st Congressional District:
In southern Minnesota, Republican state Sen. Mike Parry and Allen Quist are competing to challenge incumbent DFL Rep. Tim Walz in November.
In recent weeks, the Parry-Quist race became more interesting after Parry brought up comments Quist made years ago about social issues, including the roles of men and women in the home.
Last week, Parry got more attention when he called Gov. Mark Dayton “scary” and said that he saw Dayton “pop 15 to 16 pills” during a meeting.
Minnesota’s 8th Congressional District:
Jeff Anderson, Tarryl Clark and Rick Nolan are in a three-way contest to challenge Republican Rep. Chip Cravaack in November.
Nolan, a former Minnesota congressman, has the DFL endorsement, but Clark has the fundraising advantage among the three candidates. Since she entered the race, Clark has raised $1.1 million, much of it coming from her wide fundraising network outside the 8th District and the state. Nolan has so far raised $357,655 and Anderson has raised $172,359, according to their most recent campaign finance filings.
The race heated up in recent weeks when Women Vote!, the political spending arm of Emily’s List, a group that supports female candidates who support legalized abortions including Clark, sent out a mailer to voters in the 8th questioning Nolan’s voting record on abortion issues.
And the Clark campaign released an ad challenging Nolan’s work as founder and chairman of the Minnesota World Trade Center. Nolan called the ad “gutter-dirty politics.”
Senate District 33:
State Republican Rep. Connie Doepke of Orono and GOP-endorsed David Osmek are both vying to replace retiring Republican state Sen. Gen Olson.
Doepke lost the endorsement to Osmek earlier this year, and the race has since attracted attention from outside groups including the Freedom Club and Americans for Prosperity Minnesota.
Both organizations have a conservative bent, but both have also sent out mailers challenging incumbent Doepke’s record on spending and President Barack Obama’s health care law. Doepke said the mailers distorted her record.
Meanwhile, Doepke has been forced to clarify her endorsements. After including 3rd Congressional District Rep. Erik Paulsen on a campaign mailer, Paulsen sent out a statement reiterating his endorsement of Osmek.
Also worth watching: House District 33B, where incumbent Rep. Steve Smith, R-Mound, lost the GOP endorsement to Cindy Pugh, who has views tend to be more conservative than Smith’s.
Senate District 47:
Bruce Schwichtenberg of Carver is trying to unseat Senate Tax Chair Julianne Ortman of Chanhassen. After a two-hour fight at the May convention, delegates in Senate District 47 left without endorsing a candidate.
Ortman said that the convention’s unusual outcome had a lot to do with high turnout among delegates who support Ron Paul. They backed Schwichtenberg over Ortman.
For his part, Schwichtenberg said Ortman is not conservative enough for the district.
House District 4A:
Here, three Republicans and two Democrats want to succeed retiring GOP Rep. Morrie Lanning of Moorhead.
House District 6B:
Three Democrats and two Republicans filed for DFL Rep. Tom Rukavina of Virginia’s seat, who is retiring after 13 terms.