Nov 8, 2022 - Politics & Policy

Democrat Tim Walz wins second term as Minnesota governor

Tim walz Minnesota governor

Minnesota Gov. Tim Walz. Photo: Scott Olson/Getty Images

Minnesota Democratic Gov. Tim Walz won re-election in Tuesday’s midterms, the Associated Press reported.

Why it matters: The incumbent Democrat overcame a tumultuous first term marked by COVID-19 and the murder of George Floyd to win another four years as the state's chief executive.

State of play: Walz was challenged by Republican Scott Jensen, a physician and former state senator who garnered national attention for his controversial comments on COVID-19 and vaccines.

  • Several minor party candidates were also on the ballot.

Driving the campaign: The Walz campaign and outside Democratic groups spent heavily on ads blasting Jensen for previously supporting an abortion ban.

  • Meanwhile, Republicans criticized Walz over inflation, crime and pandemic closures of businesses, churches and schools.

Between the lines: Minnesota Republicans had initially hoped that a favorable political environment would give them a shot at winning the governor’s office for the first time since 2006.

Catch up quick: Walz, a former teacher and football coach, served six terms representing a southern Minnesota congressional district before running for governor in 2018.

  • He sought to present himself as a "steady hand" in challenging times as he ran for a second term.
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