Some Lawmakers Hit A Different Campaign Trail

By KBJR News 1

July 5, 2012 Updated Jul 6, 2012 at 1:33 PM CDT

Duluth, MN (Northland's NewsCenter) -- The summer campaign season is in full swing. Coming off of the Fourth of July holiday, it's evident that candidates are pressing the flesh at parades and other events, meeting as many constituents as they can.

But you might notice a change in who is campaigning where in Minnesota this summer.

All 201 lawmakers in Minnesota are up for reelection this year, so it's no doubt there will be some new people working at the capitol next year.

But because of the new district lines that were drawn and released earlier this year, your current state representative may now be campaigning elsewhere.

In the Northland, the political landscape changed significantly for some lawmakers, and others are barely noticing a difference.

Two incumbents are vying for just one Senate seat.
That is DFL Senator Tom Saxhaug of Grand Rapids, against freshman Republican Senator John Carlson of Bemidji.

The new district map also pits two current House members against each other.

Democrat Tom Anzelc of Balsam Township and Republican Carolyn McElfatrick of Grand Rapids are both running for the new house district 5B seat.

"You knock on as many doors as you possibly can, to meet the people, give them the opportunity if they've not spoken with me in the past to get to know me a little bit better, answer questions, concerns," said Rep. McElfatrick.

McElfatrick is looking to serve a second term in office, this would be Anzelc's fourth.

Two Harbors is also set to see a change. For the past ten years the city has been represented by David Dill, but now the city will be represented by either current Duluth and Hermantown representative, Democrat Mary Murphy, or Hermantown's former Mayor, Keith MacDonald, who has thrown his hat into the ring under the Republican ticket.

The new district lines reflect changes in population. They're redrawn every 10 years after the census.

There's an entirely new district in our region, too. The House's 11A seat was created this year to cover all of Carlton County and parts of St. Louis and Pine County.