Dr. Scott Jensen Wins GOP Endorsement for Minnesota Governor

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Dr. Scott Jensen, skeptical of the government’s response to COVID-19, won the Minnesota GOP’s endorsement after a mad dash on Saturday to challenge Democratic Gov. Tim Walz in the November election, skipping the ninth ballot with 65% of the vote.

Jensen, a former state senator who led on the first two ballots, regained the lead on the seventh ballot with 59%, just below the 60% needed to claim approval, once Lexington Mayor, Mike Murphy, supported him after being eliminated on the sixth ballot. .

“Game over,” Jensen told delegates, accompanied by his running mate, former Minnesota Viking and Baltimore Raven Matt Birk, who used repeated football metaphors to get their fans excited.

Jensen’s return ended a push by business executive Kendall Qualls, who fell to 33% on the final ballot after taking the lead in the fourth round. But Jensen hit a snag in the road when Qualls, who was trying to become Minnesota’s first black GOP governor endorsement, told delegates that Murphy falsely claimed that Qualls had offered to make Murphy his running mate and then took over. the offer.

Dr. Scott Jensen’s running mate is former Minnesota Viking Matt Birk.PA
The claim angered some Qualls delegates and forced two extra ballots. And Qualls clearly did not appear on stage with Jensen for the traditional party unity show, ending the convention on a divisive note.

But Qualls and most other candidates have pledged to honor the party endorsement and give up the right to run in the Aug. 9 GOP primary, and state Chairman David Hann told reporters that he didn’t expect Jensen to face a serious challenge. Former President Donald Trump, still a powerful force within the party, did not back anyone in the Minnesota races.

“Minnesota Republicans have chosen the most extreme and dangerous candidate to lead their party in the fall,” Minnesota Democratic Party Chairman Ken Martin said in a statement. “In the past two weeks alone, Scott Jensen has promised to ban abortions for rape victims and throw one of his political opponents in jail. Minnesotans want their leaders to focus on helping working families, but Scott Jensen is only interested in his far-right political agenda.

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