In recent weeks, two GOP legislators in Senate District 49 — Sen. Geoff Michel and Rep. Pat Mazorol — have announced that they won’t be running for re-election this year. That news caught Republicans in the district — which includes Edina and parts of Minnetonka and Bloomington — off guard.
The local GOP chapter was originally slated to hold an endorsing convention this weekend to back their chosen candidates. But according to Lew Coffey, GOP co-chair in the district, they’re planning to delay the process by four to six weeks. The reason? No candidates have announced bids for the two open seats.
“That’s to give people time to assess their situation and for us to sit down and interview people who are interested and adequately vet potential candidates,” Coffey tells PIM. “I don’t see where we’ve got much choice. So far we don’t have anybody seriously on the radar.”
Michel’s Senate seat has attracted two DFL candidates: Cynthia Bemis Abrams and Melisa Lopez Franzen. Former DFL Rep. Paul Rosenthal is running for the Legislature again in House District 49B.