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DFL Rep. Persell has no challengers yet; GOP to pick Nolan challenger on Saturday

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DFL Rep. Persell has no challengers yet; GOP to pick Nolan challenger on Saturday
Bemidji Minnesota P.O. Box 455 56619

BEMIDJI — For the moment at least, Minnesota Rep. John Persell, DFL-Bemidji, appears safe for the 2014 elections.

Beltrami County GOP chairman Ken Cobb said Thursday he hasn’t heard of any challengers coming forward against the House Majority Whip, who has served in the Legislature since 2008.

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“I’ve been asked that a lot lately and unfortunately, no, I do not know of anybody at this point that’s made a decision to run,” he said. “I do think that Persell is beatable by a candidate willing to work hard, however, it’s not going to be something where a Republican puts their name on the ballot and gets elected just because they’re a Republican on the ballot.”

Persell survived a GOP surge in 2010 and a duel of of incumbents from redrawn districts against John Howes in 2012.

During the MN Senate District 2 GOP convention in Bagley on Sunday, incumbent Rep. Steve Green, R-Fosston, won the endorsement for House District 2B and Dave Hancock won the endorsement to challenge Rep. Roger Erickson, DFL-Baudette, in 2A, Cobb said.

Erickson claimed the seat from Hancock in 2012.

Republicans in the Eighth U.S. Congressional District will gather Saturday in Park Rapids, Minn., to choose a candidate to run against U.S. Rep. Rick Nolan. They’re expected to select Stewart Mills, a vice president at Mills Fleet Farm from the Brainerd Lakes area. The convention begins at 9 a.m. at Park Rapids High School.

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