Caucus-goers give early nod to Seifert, RybakDouglas County caucuses Tuesday night followed statewide trends in the race for governor – for the most part.
By: Al Edenloff, Alexandria Echo Press
Douglas County caucuses Tuesday night followed statewide trends in the race for governor – for the most part.
Representative Marty Seifert of Marshall, picked up the most support statewide, with about 50 percent of a straw poll vote. He was closely followed by Representative Tom Emmer of Delano, who received about 40 percent of the vote.
Among Douglas County Republican caucus-goers, Seifert was the clear choice, receiving 87 of the 118 votes or 74 percent of the total. Emmer was next with 23 votes or about 19 percent.
The DFL’s preference poll for governor wasn’t as clear-cut.
Statewide, the leading candidates were Minneapolis Mayor R.T. Rybak with about 22 percent of the votes, and House Speaker Margaret Anderson Kelliher, with about 20 percent. “Uncommitted” drew the next highest total, 15 percent.
Douglas County DFLers are leaning more toward Rybak, giving him 44 out of 124 votes or about 35 percent. Nearly 17 percent of the local caucus-goers said they were uncommitted, the second-highest amount, followed by Representative Paul Thissen, 15 percent, and Anderson Kelliher with 10 percent.
Leaders of the GOP and DFL parties in Douglas County were happy with how things went Tuesday.
“Although the turnout was smaller than in the last election cycle, the 124 participants, including younger voters, engaged in energetic exchange of thoughts and ideas,” said Beth Jansen, chair of the Douglas County DFL. “Many remarked on the grassroots feeling and positive atmosphere.”
“I was pleased with the turnout,” said Dan Haglin, chair of the Douglas County Republicans. “Even though it is considered an ‘off-year’ election, there is a great deal of concern out there among conservatives when it comes to the continued erosion of our freedoms and the incredible explosion of our national debt. True to form, the producers of this nation will be expected to pay the tab. Conservatives at all income levels understand that those small business owners are the ones who employ the vast majority of people in this country.”
The governor’s race was just one part of the caucuses.
Other tasks of the evening included selecting delegates for the county and senate district conventions and the election of precinct leadership.
Caucus-goers also talked about issues they wanted to add, or remove, from their party’s platform.
DFLers discussed themes related to renewable energy, educational issues, and a call for a separation of corporation and state in response to a recent Supreme Court ruling, Jansen said.