Local GOP Legislative Candidates Receive Party Endorsements
GOP candidates for the Minnesota House and Senate in Districts 2 and 5 have received endorsements from the Republican Party of Minnesota, and in at least one case, a current senator did not earn their party’s endorsement.
Minnesota State Senator Paul Utke from Park Rapids will need to win a primary election if he hopes to return to the state legislature next year. Utke, who has served as a senator for Senate District 2 since 2018, failed to earn the GOP endorsement for what is now District 5 this past weekend.
Instead, District 5 Republicans endorsed Bret Bussman of Browerville. Bussman is a 20-year Army retiree and works at Camp Ripley. He earned 62% of the vote at the endorsing convention.
Utke said in a press release that he intends to continue to seek re-election and is preparing for a primary election with Bussman.
Also in District 5A, Republicans endorsed Lake Shore mayor Krista Knudsen. Mike Paulus was also seeking the endorsement, but after failing to earn that, he says he will not run in a primary against Knudsen.
In District 2, current state legislators were all endorsed, with Rep. Steve Green earning the Senate 2 endorsement, Rep. Matt Grossell getting the District 2A endorsement, and Rep. Matt Bliss being endorsed for District 2B.