Feb 2, 2022 - Politics

Scott Jensen wins Minnesota GOP's gubernatorial race straw poll

Former Sen. Scott Jensen. Photo courtesy of Minnesota Legislature

Former state Sen. Scott Jensen has won the Republican Party's latest gubernatorial straw poll, garnering support of 38% of activists who participated in Tuesday's precinct caucuses.

  • Results posted online showed Sen. Paul Gazelka finishing second with 14%. Dermatologist Neil Shah held a narrow lead for third, with 92% of precincts reporting.

Why it matters: The results provide a snapshot of where core GOP activists stand with less than four months to go until a May endorsing convention.

  • Most, if not all, candidates will drop out without the endorsement, leaving the victor to cruise to the nomination.

Yes, but: The straw poll winner hasn't always gone on to win delegates' backing.

The big picture: The GOP field of candidates vying to challenge DFL Gov. Tim Walz in November remains large — a half dozen candidates participated last night —and unsettled.

  • The latest entrant in the race, former Hennepin County Sheriff Rich Stanek, announced his campaign hours before caucuses began.

Plus: Candidates also need enough cash to make it through the convention.

  • Year-end fundraising reports released Tuesday show Jensen and Gazelka leading the pack on money in the bank, though both trail Walz.

Go deeper on campaign finance filings via MinnPost.


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