MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO/AP) — Voters in Minnesota are deciding whether to make President Donald Trump the first Republican to carry the state since Richard Nixon in 1972, or to hold to their usual line and back former Democratic Vice President Joe Biden.
Other top races on Tuesday’s ballot include a U.S. Senate race, all eight congressional seats and a struggle for control of the Minnesota Legislature.
Democrats believe the turnout will top the modern day record of 77% set back in 2008, and they think that is going to benefit them and power them to victory.
WCCO’s Jeff Wagner was stationed at the Republican Party’s election night headquarters in Bloomington, and Esme Murphy was stationed at the DFL Party headquarters in St. Paul.
The ballroom at the double tree hotel in Bloomington is the typical watch party location for Republicans on election night. But with the pandemic, things have changed. Instead of the roughly 800 people they had two years ago, restrictions are keeping the head count down to 250 this time. Because of that, the GOP reserved two more ballrooms for attendees, with TV screens inside showing any speakers at the podium in the main ballroom.
Many Republican candidates for Minnesota congressional seats are expected, both in-person and on digital.
Murphy said, in contrast to the number of people that were physically attending the GOP party, the public was not invited to the DFL party. This is very much in keeping with the Democratic party’s adherence to a view that social distancing and rules to prevent the spread of COVID-19 need to be in place, lest anyone be seen as hypocritical.
The person who is closest to the Biden campaign in Minnesota is Sen. Amy Klobuchar. She has been a major surrogate for the Biden-Harris ticket around the country. She is expected at the party’s headquarters Tuesday evening.
There are several races here in Minnesota that could greatly impact which party has the majority Washington, but also in the state legislature.