Crow Wing County GOP Caucus at Forestview
BAXTER -- Crow Wing County is overwhelmingly Jeff Johnson country, if Republican caucusgoers had the final word. Out of 102 votes, the 2014 Republican nominee for governor and current Hennepin County commissioner led with a dominant 71 ballots, while his opponents couldn’t muster half his support combined. This year’s caucuses bear special significance -- setting the stage for an open governor’s seat race, the election of two U.S. Senate seats (a rarity in the annals of American democracy), as well as five congressional races garnering national attention as midterms approach in the President Donald Trump era. Along with national implications, local voters will be deciding the Minnesota House of Representatives, as every seat of the house is up for election this year. Tuesday evening, Forestview Middle School in Baxter served as one of the sites for Crow Wing County. The governor’s race loomed as the focal point of the event -- though multiple caucusgoers noted the open U.S. Senate seats lend this year a gravity it wouldn’t typically display. Common topics of discussion revolved around Republican staples, such as repealing Roe v. Wade, deregulating small businesses, creating a free-market, competition-based health care system and scaling back the influence of government in local affairs.