Democrats lining up to run for Anderson’s Senate seat

That didn’t take long. Several Democrats have already announced that they’re running or are thinking about a run for the Minnesota Senate seat that will be vacated by DFL Sen. Ellen Anderson. Gov. Dayton appointed Anderson to the Public Utilities Commission earlier today. Anderson will officially resign on March 20th triggering a special election in a seat that includes St. Paul and Falcon Heights.

DFL Rep. John Lesch told MPR News that he’s running for the seat.

“Consider me officially in,” Lesch said.

DFL Rep. Alice Hausman says she’s considering it.

“I’m taking a deep breath and thinking about it,” Hausman said.

Darin Broton, who ran several political campaigns in recent years, says he’s also thinking about a run. Broton currently works for Tunheim Partners.

Update below:

Another possible candidate is St. Paul City Council member Lee Helgen. Helgen says he’s focused on his reelection to the City Council.

“I’m committed to running for reelection,” Helgen said. “I appreciate that people are thinking about me and would consider me as a potential candidate but it’s not something I thought a lot about yet.”

Helgen was careful to note that he only learned about Anderson’s departure only a half an hour ago.

Helgen says he is NOT considering a run for the MN Senate seat and is focused on his reelection.

Helgen’s opponent for the St. Paul City Council seat, Amy Brendmoen, is also thinking about it.

“I wouldn’t rule it out,” Brendmoen said in an e-mail. “But I am pretty focused on the city council race and issues at present.”

Dayton has scheduled the primary election for March 29th. The General Election will be held on April 12th.

I’ll update with other names, etc.


Former DFL Rep. Mary Jo McGuire says she’s also thinking about a run. But she said it depends on Hausman. McGuire says she won’t run if Hausman does run. McGuire decided to retire from the Minnesota House in 2002 after redistricting forced her into Hausman’s district.

“I wouldn’t have left at the point but I wouldn’t have left if it weren’t for redistricting,” McGuire said. “When a seat opens like this, it’s intriguing to think about.”

  • Sandy Pappas

    Former House member Mary Jo McGuire is also considering a run.