John Kline, Second District Targeted by Democrats
Former Eagan Rep. Mike Obermueller has officially declared his intent to seek the DFL nomination for the Second Congressional District while the DNC has targeted John Kline as an incumbent to knock out of office.
The moment the new redistricting-altered maps were released in February, U.S. Congressman John Kline, (R-Second District) of Lakeville, became a target for Democrats.
For years, Kline has been as safe a bet during election season as anyone, churning out double-digit election wins every cycle.
But the new second district now includes DFL-leaning portions of northern Dakota County, as well as southern Washington County, and doesn't include Republican strongholds such as Carver County.
And that has more seasoned Democrats looking at the race with more interest.
The Star Tribune is reporting that former State Rep. Mike Obermueller has officially declared his intent to seek the DFL nomination for the Second Congressional District.
Obermueller, an attorney from Eagan, is considered by many to be the kind of strong Democrat that has shied away from running against Kline, who won his last election by 30 points and already has nearly $1 million in the bank.
In the last election, in 2010, Kline beat up on DFLer Shelley Madore, winning by 27 points. But the tale of the election lay in fundraising: Star Tribune report said that Madore raised just $89,000 compared to Kline's $1.5 million.
And that's where the DFL is looking for help.
Kline is now the target of Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee radio ads, according to MinnPost, slamming the five-term congressman over his vote in support of Rep. Paul Ryan's Republican budget plan that eliminates Medicare.
In addition, Politico is reporting that the Democratic National Committee is looking more closely at the second district, and could plow money into the race in support of a Democrat.
Obermueller, an attorney from Eagan, joins Northfield City Councilor Patrick Ganey, who announced his bid for his party's support in March. Both are eyeing the seat of five-term Republican incumbent John Kline.
"I want to represent the people of Minnesota in Congress. That's been a long-term dream of mine," Obermueller told the Star Tribune.
"We basically lost a decade of prosperity and progress in this district," he said.
Ganey, a development officer at Carleton College, said one of his priorities is to make education available for every American.
"We need to invest in our young children and also make sure that every college-bound student can afford it," he said in his candidacy announcement. "We must support the young entrepreneur and the mid-career professional who have the bold ideas for a new business, and make sure they are not thwarted by a lack of local infrastructure or a lack of health care coverage. "
The Star Tribune is also reporting that Dakota County Commissioner Kathleen Gaylord is considering seeking the DFL endorsement for Congress.
The DFL party is expected to endorse a candidate April 28.
Kline's office declined to comment on any of the potential candidates looking to run against him in November.