- Republican Party of Minnesota
Republican Party of Minnesota Chairman Tony Sutton Senate leader Amy Koch House leader Kurt Zellers Founded 1858 or earlier Headquarters 525 Park Street
Saint Paul, MN 55103-2145
Ideology American Conservatism
National affiliation Republican Party Official colors Red Seats in the Upper House Seats in the Lower House Website www.gop-mn.org Politics of the United States
The Republican Party of Minnesota is the Minnesota branch of the United States Republican Party. Elected by the party’s state central committee in June 2009, its chairman is Tony Sutton, and its deputy-chairman is Michael Brodkorb.
The Republican Party in Minnesota was the dominant party in the state for approximately the first hundred years of Minnesota's statehood, from 1858 through the 1950s. The 1892 Republican National Convention was held in Minneapolis. Republican candidates routinely won the state governorship as well as most other state offices. The party was aided by an opposition divided between the Democratic Party and the Minnesota Farmer-Labor Party, who eventually merged in 1944.
The Independent-Republican Party (I-R) was the name of the party from November 15, 1975 until September 23, 1995. The name change was made because the “Republican" name was damaged by the Watergate Scandal. Polls conducted in the early-mid 1970s indicated people in Minnesota were more likely to vote for a candidate who identify as an "Independent" versus a "Republican". During that time, the state party became more dependent on grassroots fundraising and eventually went bankrupt. After the National party pumped money into the party, in the early-mid 1980s, their image and base began turning more conservative. During this time the party had both US Senate seats and briefly held control of the state House of Representatives. By 1994, the grassroots had turned socially more conservative, and changed the name back in 1995. Attempts to drop the term "Independent" had been defeated in 1989, 1991 and 1993.
Current party information and endorsed candidates
The previous Governor of Minnesota Tim Pawlenty is a Republican. After Pawlenty's re-election in 2006, Republicans held the governorship for 16 of 20 years through the end of 2010. In the general election of 2010, the party captured both chambers of the Minnesota Legislature for the first time since the 1970s, and defeated 18-term Minnesota Congressman Jim Oberstar by electing Chip Cravaack, despite having lost every statewide race. The 2008 Republican National Convention was held in St. Paul.
For the 2010 state-wide elections, the party endorsed State Representative Tom Emmer and Metropolitan Council member Annette Meeks for governor and lieutenant governor. State Representative Dan Severson was the endorsed candidate for secretary of state. Attorney and psychologist Chris Barden was the endorsed candidate for attorney general. Patricia Anderson was the endorsed candidate for state auditor. All five candidates lost their respective elections.
For the 2008 senate elections, incumbent Republican Senator Norm Coleman was defeated by Democratic-Farmer-Labor candidate Al Franken by 312 votes out of over 2.5 million cast after a long series of dramatic and contentious re-counts.
Current elected officials
The Minnesota Republican Party holds none of the five statewide elected offices but holds a majority in both the Minnesota Senate and Minnesota House of Representatives. Republicans also hold 4 of the state's 8 U.S. House seats.
Members of Congress
U.S. House of Representatives
- John Kline; 2nd district
- Erik Paulsen; 3rd district
- Michele Bachmann; 6th district
- Chip Cravaack; 8th district
- President of the Senate: Michelle Fischbach
- Senate Majority Leader: Amy Koch
- Speaker of the House: Kurt Zellers
Minnesota political parties Major Minor Defunct
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