In three campaigns, state Rep. Larry Haws, DFL-St. Cloud, never received less than 65 percent of the vote. That electoral dominance would suggest that Democrats should be able to hold on to House District 15B despite Haws’ retirement.
There are two DFLers running in Tuesday’s primary election: Zachary Dorholt and Carol Lewis. The winner will face King Banaian, a St. Cloud State University economics professor and prominent blogger, who won the GOP endorsement without opposition.
Last month Dorholt, a mental health counselor, secured the DFL endorsement on the first ballot. Backing from Haws was key in swaying the endorsing convention.
“It’s been pretty vanilla,” says Dorholt, of the campaign. “Nobody’s doing anything wild and crazy. I’m primarily sticking to the phones and doing lots of door-knocking. The number one thing — overwhelmingly, on the phone and at the door — is jobs.”
Despite missing out on the endorsement, Lewis is still contesting the DFL nomination. She spent eight years on the St. Cloud school board, so is fairly well known to voters, and currently works as a law clerk. One sign that Lewis is mounting a serious effort: she loaned her campaign more than $2,000 this week.
“I just think that I bring more to the table,” says Lewis. “I think I have a lot more experience to bring to the job.”