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Growe notes that Simon was an outspoken opponent of the proposed voter ID amendment, which Growe also opposed.

Joan Growe endorses Steve Simon for Secretary of State

Joan Growe endorsed Rep. Steve Simon, DFL-Hopkins, for Secretary of State. (Staff photo: Peter Bartz-Gallagher.)

Joan Growe endorsed Rep. Steve Simon, DFL-Hopkins, for Secretary of State. (Staff photo: Peter Bartz-Gallagher.)

Former Secretary of State Joan Growe is backing Rep. Steve Simon, DFL-Hopkins, in his effort to win that office next year, according to an announcement released by Simon’s campaign on Wednesday afternoon.

Growe, 78, served as Secretary of State from 1975 to 1999, and was the first woman elected to the position.

In her statement of support, Growe said Simon is the right choice to carry on current Secretary of State Mark Ritchie‘s record of transparent administration of elections and voting recounts. Growe notes that in 2012, Simon was an outspoken opponent of the proposed voter ID amendment, which Growe also campaigned against, and that Simon successfully carried a bill earlier this year to allow “no excuse” absentee voting.

“Steve Simon has the experience, skill and passion to establish a vision for the future to make Minnesota elections even better for the next generation,” Growe said.

Simon chairs the House Elections Committee, and is in his fifth term representing the suburban district. He has one DFL opponent, Rep. Debra Hilstrom, and business executive Dennis Nguyen is running on the Republican side.

Growe’s statement is the second major endorsement announcement for Simon’s campaign. In October, Simon secured the endorsements of 32 DFL legislators, including a number of veteran lawmakers and powerful committee chairs. For her part, Hilstrom announced last week that she has been endorsed by the Police Officers Federation of Minneapolis, making her the first candidate to receive support from a labor group.

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