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Trolling through the House chamber Monday to get comment on the developing DFL caucus leadership picture was like pulling teeth. Most legislators were focused on the task at hand - passing a flood and tornado relief bill - and wanted to reserve talks of leadership until the general election passed.

House DFLers say leadership talks can wait

Lyndon Carlson

Lyndon Carlson

Trolling through the House chamber Monday to get comment on the developing DFL caucus leadership picture was like pulling teeth. Most legislators were focused on the task at hand – passing a flood and tornado relief bill – and wanted to reserve talks of leadership until the general election passed.

“I’ve been suggesting to people that we not get too embroiled in leadership discussions until elections are over,” state DFL Rep. Lyndon Carlson said after a House Finance Committee meeting, which he chairs. “We need to keep our eyes on the prize, and that’s maintaining a majority.”

Several other DFL committee chairs, including Tax Committee head Ann Lenczewski and Ways and Means Committee chair Loren Solberg, echoed Calrson’s sentiments, saying they were focusing on their own elections first, and worrying about the leadership picture when results were clear.

But they all acknowledge that the race is coming up quickly. House caucus members plan to meet shortly after Nov. 2 to vote on a new Speaker of the House and Majority leader, given they maintain control of the body. And three representatives have already emerged as actively campaigning for the Majority Leader post, including Erin Murphy, St. Paul, Melissa Hortman, Brooklyn Park, and Steve Simon of St. Louis Park.

When asked who was supporting his run, Simon said that his supporters wished to remain anonymous.

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