59B faceoff: Cole, Dehn, Alexander
For DFL delegates of Sen. Dist. 59B (formerly 58B), convention day began at 8 a.m. and 11 hours later they were still unable to endorse a candidate for the soon-to-be vacant house seat.
The seat, currently held by Rep. Bobby Joe Champion is up for grabs as Champion is running to become the district’s state senator. He received the party’s endorsement for senate in overwhelming fashion, gaining 81-percent of the delegate votes versus his rival, Troy Parker.
However, in a crowded field of seven, none were able to garner the needed 60-percent of delegate votes to secure the party endorsement for the house seat in 59B. In what essentially was a three-person race, just over 20 votes separated front-runners Raymond Dehn, Ian Alexander and Terra Cole. Four votes were taken before delegates agreed to not offer an official endorsement for the seat.
Without a DFL endorsement, the candidates will head into the primary without much-desired DFL funding. The DFL will however fully back the winner of the open primary in his or her bid against any challenger in the November, general election. In addition, because the party could not agree upon an endorsed candidate, currently elected DFL officials are barred by party rules from endorsing a candidate in the primary as well.
Dist. 59B encompasses much of North Minneapolis including the Broadway corridor and extends to downtown. The district was recently redrawn to include formerly south, Bryn Mawr.
Insight News has endorsed Cole.
The party delegates in 59A voted to endorse incumbent, Joe Mullery. Dist. 59A extends throughout northwest Minneapolis towards Brooklyn Center.