Despite past support for his campaign, the largest newspaper in Senate Majority Leader Dave Senjem‘s district has opted to endorse his DFL challenger for the Legislature this year.
In endorsing outgoing DFL Olmsted County Commissioner Judy Ohly in the Senate District 25 race, the Rochester Post-Bulletin cites Senjem’s failure to use his leadership role both as the Senate majority leader and chair of the Capital Investment Committee to pass funding for $10 million in improvements to a civic center in Rochester.
From the Post Bulletin:
“Senjem had assured us that the civic center was well-positioned to get a large share of the $47.5 million in economic development funds. ‘Everybody knew that the DEED block grant was directed toward the civic center. That’s no secret,’ he said.
Apparently not everyone knew about the plan — at least not the important people. Regardless, the only thing that matters now is that Rochester’s aging civic center remains in limbo, needing $10 million in repairs, and civic leaders must go back to the drawing board yet again, trying to figure out what went wrong.
Senjem shouldn’t bear the blame alone. We’re not thrilled with Dayton, DEED and some other Republican members of Rochester’s legislative delegation. If they’d fought for the civic center in the House, things might have turned out differently.
But they didn’t. And in this case, the buck stops with Sen. Senjem. He didn’t deliver, and in this election year, there’s a strong challenger waiting in the wings.”
The paper has endorsed Senjem in the past, but says now that Ohly’s experience on the county board and her views on taxes and health care make her the best fit for the regional center. A political index compiled by watchdog group Common Cause Minnesota puts the Senate District 25 seat safely in GOP hands with a GOP+12 swing.
For the full endorsement, go here.