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The Capitol Note: Kahn campaign alleges voter fraud from opponent Noor’s supporters

1) Veteran Rep. Phyllis Kahn’s campaign alleged that fraudulent voting by supporters of her opponent, Mohamud Noor, was rampant on Friday, the day early voting began in Minnesota, KSTP reports.

The Kahn-Noor primary for House District 60B is likely the most contested legislative primary in the state, or at least the most closely watched. Roughly 140 people registered at the same Minneapolis address as their home when early voting began on Friday, according to the secretary of state, and Kahn campaign attorney Brian Rice said that voter fraud is occurring. Hennepin County elections officials will look into the matter, and about 420 people voted in-person at Minneapolis City Hall that day.

Noor, in a statement, denied the accusation: “I categorically deny any assertion of wrongdoing on the part of my campaign, and I welcome an investigation into the allegations raised by Brian Rice.”

2) Rhonda Sivarajah, who is challenging GOP endorsee Tom Emmer in the 6th Congressional District, has said the former state representative tried to muscle her out the race, the St. Cloud Times reports.

Sivarajah, who chairs the Anoka County board, cited her colleague and supporter Scott Schulte as an example. Emmer called Schulte, he said, and urged Schulte to use whatever leverage he had to get Sivarajah out of the race. Emmer has long been considered the frontrunner to succeed retiring US Rep. Michele Bachmann. Emmer’s campaign didn’t return the newspaper’s request for comment.

The Republican who wins the Aug. 12 primary is virtually guaranteed the seat.

3) US Sen. Amy Klobuchar said federal disaster agency officials will be in town on Tuesday to assess the damage caused by Minnesota’s record-breaking floods, the Pioneer Press reports.

The agency will assess over the course of about a week whether the damages meet the $7.3 million threshold necessary to get federal disaster funds. Also necessary would be a formal disaster decree from President Barack Obama, who was in town last week. There are already state-level disaster declarations in many Minnesota counties, and a special legislative session might be in the state’s future.

“We’ve never quite seen anything — for decades — where the entire state experienced some type of flooding,” Klobuchar said.


  • The Minnesota Chamber of Commerce and the Brainerd Lakes Chamber of Commerce are teaming up to organize a gubernatorial debate in Nisswa on August 19. Prominent candidates from both parties have been invited. The event starts at 11:30 a.m., and will be held at the Grand View Lodge.  Cost is $25 for chamber members and $35 for non-members; sponsorships available at $500. More information here.
  • Leigh Currie has registered to lobby for the Minnesota Center for Environmental Advocacy. It is the first lobbying assignment for Currie, an attorney with that organization since earlier this year, and she becomes the environmental group’s 10th advocate currently on file.
  • Campaign team members for DFL U.S. Sen. Al Franken and other DFL activists are holding a “neighborhood party” in Brooklyn Center to generate support for all DFL candidates in that area. The event begins at 6:00 p.m. Tuesday night at 1512 Woodbine Lane, and is intended to help build an outreach and engagement team for local campaign operations. More information here.
  • Chelsey Herrig of Jackson has been elected to lead the student program of the National Education Association, the major nationwide teachers union. Herrig, a graduate of Southwest Minnesota State University, will serve a two-year term based in Washington, D.C., where she will be the nominal leader of some 60,000 student members.
  • The Minnesota County Attorney Association Board of Directors is seeking a new executive director. Duties associated with the job include business and organizational administration, as well as overseeing the board’s setting of its legislative agenda. Minimum qualifications include a J.D., at least three years of experience managing a professional association and working knowledge of both criminal and civil legal practices. More information and application available here.

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