MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — Congressional Democrats have identified 59 districts they hope to flip in the 2018 midterm elections, including two Minnesota congressmen.
The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee (DCCC) identified Rep. Jason Lewis of Minnesota’s 2nd District and Erik Paulsen of the 3rd District as being vulnerable in the coming election. Both districts cover suburban and “ex-urban” areas surrounding the Twin Cities, which have not historically as solidly blue or red as urban and rural districts.
Lewis, formerly a conservative talk radio host, won his first term in Congress last year by less than 7,000 votes, or 2.2 percent, to replace longtime Republican represenative John Kline, who retired. He beat former St. Jude Hospital executive Angie Craig, who earned the Democratic nomination.
Paulsen won his 5th term in Congress more handily, by more than 53,000 votes, or 13.8 percent. He beat longtime Democratic Minnesota state senator Terri Bonoff, whose son was a senior advisor in the Obama Administration.
Republicans currently hold a majority in the House by 23 seats. According to 2016 FEC filings, the DCCC spent more than $4.2 million Paulsen’s election and more than $3 million in Lewis’s.
Democrats also only narrowly won the election for Minnesota’s 8th District in 2016. Democrat Rick Nolan beat Republican Stewart Mills only by about 2,000 votes, or 0.6 percent. It was by far the state’s most expensive race, with more than $17 million in outside spending, including $5.7 million from the DCCC.
In all, this adds up to a lot of money and a lot of political advertising in Minnesota come 2018.