By Esme Murphy

MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — Minnesota Republicans had a rough election night. Two constitutional amendments they had counted on to help drive Conservative voter turnout not only failed but appeared to have the opposite effect.

Sen. Amy Klobuchar carried all but two counties in the state winning reelection by a landslide 35 percent, Rep. Chip Cravaack fell in the 8th District to DFL Challenger Rick Nolan and both Houses of the Legislature went from Republican to Democratic majorities.

Republicans are left wondering what they need to do by 2014 when both Gov. Mark Dayton and Sen. Al Franken are up for re-election.

The Voter ID and Marriage Amendment failures are seen by some as an indication that, in a tough economy voters, really don’t want to be focusing on social issues.

And while even Republicans agree Sen. Klobuchar would have been tough to beat under any circumstances, the party nominated Ron Paul supporter Kurt Bills to run against her.

He ended up running a weak and controversial campaign. Republican Party Chair Pat Shortridge appeared on WCCO Sunday Morning.

“I think after every election you have to evaluate what happened both from a process and procedural standpoint but from a message and philosophy standpoint,” Shortridge said. “I think our ideas are strong our philosophies are strong we need to do a better job of translating those into actual people’s lives in terms of their everyday problems and concerns.”

“I think we will not have any shortage of very qualified candidates to run against Governor Dayton and Senator Franken,” he added.

And while Republicans have another try at retaking the Minnesota House of Representatives in 2014 — Minnesota State Senators are not up for reelection until 2016, meaning the Senate will stay in DFL hands until then.

You can watch WCCO Sunday Morning every Sunday with Esme Murphy and Matt Brickman at 6 a.m. and 10:30 a.m. every Sunday.


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