The Minnesota Supreme Court has granted a request from the DFL party to make a name change on the November ballot in House District 7B.
An order issued today directs the St. Louis County auditor to remove the name of incumbent Rep. Kerry Gauthier, DFL-Duluth, and to add the name of Erik Simonson, the DFL endorsed candidate. Gauthier ended his re-election bid last month following news reports that he had a sexual encounter with a 17-year-old boy. Simonson and the DFL had been poised for a write-in campaign if necessary.
In a new release, DFL Chair Ken Martin praised the court ruling.
“Our purpose in filing this petition was to ensuring a fair election for the voters in District 7B,” Martin wrote. “We are glad to learn that the Minnesota Supreme Court agrees that Duluth voters should have a chance to choose between the endorsed candidates of the major parties — a choice that Minnesotans in every other district in the state will have on Election Day.”
Republican Travis Silvers is the Republican candidate in House District 7B. Duluth City Councilor Jay Fosle is running a write-in campaign without party affiliation.