MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — President Donald Trump’s Duluth visit is a sign Republicans think they can win the traditionally Democratic stronghold.
In fact, the state of Humphrey, Mondale, and Wellstone may not be as reliably blue as it once was. It might be turning purple.
Donald Trump came close to making Minnesota history in 2016– close to winning the state for Republicans for the first time since Richard Nixon in 1972. And it wasn’t a fluke.
Hillary Clinton did win Minnesota by a narrow 1.5 percent margin, the slimmest victory margin since Ronald Reagan nearly carried the state over native son Walter Mondale in 1984.
Minnesota is now less Democratic blue, and more Republican red — trending purple.
President Trump won 79 counties to Clinton’s 8. Clinton’s votes came mostly from the populated Twin Cities metro.
In just four years, Minnesota saw key changes in who is voting, and where. Minnesota had the highest turnout in the nation (74.7 percent), but 19 counties flipped from Democrat Obama to Republican Trump.
The good news for Democrats is that a running sample of Congressional polls shows them with a 7 percent lead nationally over Republicans.
The good news for Republicans is, of the 25 competitive toss-up districts in the entire country, Minnesota has four — the 1st, 2nd, 3rd, and the 8th Districts. That’s why President Trump visited the 8th Congressional District, including Duluth.
He won the 8th by 15 points, and it has changed parties three times in eight years, a signal the district could be trending red.
Minnesota has other top political offices up for grabs this year, including the Governor’s office and two U.S. Senate seats.
Here are some of the sources we used for this Reality Check: