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MN State Legislative Incumbents Hold Serve

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No news was good news for the four Minnesota state legislative incumbents challenged in Tuesday's primary—each of whom enjoyed a double-digit victory to move on to November's general election.

The big story was in District 12, where GOP incumbent Paul Koering survived a high-profile race in beating city councilman Kevin Goedker 55 to 45 percent. Earlier in the term Koering was the only republican to join Senate DFL-ers in an attempt to prevent a floor vote on a ban of gay marriage via constitutional amendment. A few days later Koering acknowledged that he himself was gay—becoming the only openly gay member of the GOP delegation.

The lone incumbent DFL state legislator fighting a primary battle was state Senator Dean Elton Johnson (District 13) who easily bested Michael Cruze 61 to 39 percent.

In Minnesota's State House, both republican incumbents who faced challengers won decisively. Mark Buesgens (District 35b) rolled over his opponent, Tom Rees, 78 to 22 percent. Meanwhile Neil Peterson (District 41b) beat Mark Chamberlain 67 to 33 percent.

Come back to Smart Politics for more primary election results reports.

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Remains of the Data

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Political Crumbs

Evolving?

When Scott Walker "punted" back in February after being asked if he was comfortable with the idea of evolution he added, "That's a question a politician shouldn't be involved in one way or the other." However, it may very well be a question that is asked at one of the upcoming GOP debates this year. In South Carolina during the first GOP debate in 2012, FOX News' Juan Williams asked Tim Pawlenty, "Do you equate the teaching of creationism with the teaching of evolution as the basis for what should be taught for our nation's schools?" Pawlenty replied, "There should be room in the curriculum for study of intelligent design" but that it was up to the local school districts if it should be in a science class or comparative theory class. At the fourth Republican debate held in California, Jon Huntsman addressed the GOP becoming "anti-science" thusly: "Listen, when you make comments that fly in the face of what 98 out of 100 climate scientists have said, when you call into question the science of evolution, all I'm saying is that, in order for the Republican Party to win, we can't run from science. We can't run from mainstream conservative philosophy."


73 Months and Counting

January's preliminary Bureau of Labor Statistics numbers show Minnesota's unemployment rate of 3.7 percent was once again lower than Wisconsin's 5.0 percent. That marks the 73rd consecutive month in which Minnesota has boasted a lower jobless rate than its neighbor to the east dating back to January 2009 including each of the last 67 months by at least one point. The Gopher State has now edged Wisconsin in the employment border battle for 204 of the last 216 months dating back to February 1997. Wisconsin only managed a lower unemployment rate than Minnesota for the 12 months of 2008 during this 18-year span.


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