By Esme Murphy

MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — Last week was a difficult week for the campaign of Lacy Johnson, the Republican who is trying to unseat Congresswoman Ilhan Omar.

A 17-year-old volunteer was shot and killed in north Minneapolis. A second volunteer was wounded and a suspect is in custody. Both police and the campaign said the shooting had nothing to do with the election.

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According to federal records, Johnson has raised a stunning $4 million in his long-shot effort to beat Omar.

Minnesota’s fifth Congressional district is the most Democratic Congressional District in the state,  with the nonpartisan Cook report ranking it as a plus 26 — meaning there are 26% more Democrats than Republicans.

The district encompasses all of Minneapolis and parts of nearby suburbs in both Hennepin and Anoka Counties including Golden Valley, St. Louis Park, Crystal and Fridley.

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Last month, Congresswoman Ilhan Omar won a decisive victory in the primary over a well-funded opponent — winning by 20 points. She now faces Republican Lacy Johnson, an entrepreneur who has gotten a personal endorsement from the President on his Twitter account and at Trump’s Minnesota rallies.

Johnson said the shootings of his volunteers are an indication of how much needs to be improved in his district. He was a guest on WCCO Sunday Morning.

“I think in the beginning if we had sent the message that law and order is a priority, public safety is apriority, we would not be witnessing these things,” Lacy said.  “I know a lot are pointing the finger correctly where it belongs and should be pointed at, Minneapolis City Council, our leadership and that includes Ilhan Omar.”

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Johnson has an uphill fight against Omar. In her first general election in 2018, Omar beat her Republican opponent by 56 percentage points

Esme Murphy