MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) – Presidential candidate Hillary Clinton is in Minneapolis Monday night.

It’s her first Minnesota visit since she declared her candidacy for 2016 last spring.

But Monday’s campaign stop does not include any public events, only a political fundraiser.

Hours ahead of her visit, state Republican Party leaders passed out sunglasses labelled “#SHADY,” criticizing the leading Democratic candidate for making only one private Minnesota stop.

“Despite her campaign’s superficial attempt to claim the mantle of everyday people,” said Minnesota Republican Party Chair Keith Downey, “the reality of Hillary Clinton is decades of entitlement, secrecy and scandal.”

Some Democrats were equally harsh.

The Minnesota for Bernie Sanders campaign, on Twitter, called Clinton’s visit “for the 1 percent,” and compared her to Republican candidate Jeb Bush.

A Real Clear Politics polling average gives Mrs. Clinton 59.7 percent of Democratic support nationwide, 48 percentage points ahead of Sanders.

University of Minnesota political science Professor Kathryn Pearson says Clinton’s rare public interaction opens her up to criticism, but probably not political damage.

“Despite the fact that she is not an incumbent running for re-election,” Pearson said, “she is extremely well known to voters. She has been in the public eye for decades now in many, many roles, and so voters have a very strong opinion about her already.”

Minnesota’s a traditionally Democratic presidential state, and Clinton has many of the state’s Democratic leaders behind her.

She’s got support from Gov. Mark Dayton and both of Minnesota’s Democratic U.S. senators, Amy Klobuchar and Al Franken.

Pat Kessler

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