Area state Senate seats, U.S. House seat to be part of primary election

Primary election is Aug. 11; general election is Nov. 3

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Primary election ballots will include races for two area state Senate seats and a U.S. House seat to narrow the Republican field for the November general election.

The Tuesday, Aug. 11, primary election ballot will include all candidates in state Senate Districts 9 and 10, and in the 8th Congressional District, because more than one Republican filed for each of those seats.

“If there is a primary in one party, the other parties’ candidate also appears on that ballot as well,” Deborah Erickson, Crow Wing County administrative services director, said in an email.

Depending on where voters live, their primary ballot will include:

State offices

Minnesota Senate


  • District 9: Incumbent Senate Majority Leader Paul Gazelka, R-East Gull Lake, and challenger Richard Dahl, a Republican from Lake Shore. The winner will be on the Nov. 3 general election ballot.

A. John Peters, Browerville, the DFL candidate, will also be listed on the primary and general election ballots.
State Senate District 9 includes parts of Cass, Wadena, Todd and Morrison counties.

  • District 10: Incumbent Sen. Carrie Ruud, R-Breezy Point, and challenger Shaun Christian Hansen, a Republican from Nisswa. The winner will be on the Nov. 3 general election ballot.

Steve Samuelson, Brainerd, the DFL candidate, will also be listed on the primary and general election ballots.
State Senate District 10 includes Crow Wing and Aitkin counties.

Federal offices

U.S. House of Representatives

  • 8th Congressional District: Incumbent U.S. Rep. Pete Stauber, R-Duluth, and challenger Harry Robb Welty, also a Republican from Duluth. The winner will move on to the general election.

Quinn Nystrom, Baxter, the Democratic candidate; and Judith Schwartzbacker, city of residence not listed, a Grassroots-Legalize Cannabis candidate, will also be listed on the primary and general election ballots.
The 8th Congressional District includes the entire lakes area.

  • Other: The Aug. 11 primary ballot will include races for other federal offices, including the Minnesota U.S. Senate seat currently held by Tina Smith.

Crow Wing County

  • District 5: Incumbent Crow Wing County Commissioner Doug Houge, Ironton; Michael J. Starry, Ironton; and Tom Nixon, Deerwood, will appear on the primary ballot to narrow the field to two candidates for the general election.

District 5 includes the cities of Manhattan Beach, Fifty Lakes and Emily, as well as Little Pine, Fairfield and Ross Lake townships, along with cities and townships farther south.


Filing for local judgeships in the Ninth Judicial District were Matthew Mallie, appointed in April in Crow Wing County, Court 2; and Charles D. Halverson, appointed in January 2019 in Cass County, and Cass County Attorney Benjamin T. Lindstrom, Court 4.

Their names will be on the general election ballot in November, among other judgeships.

House District 5B

After initially filing for a third term in the Minnesota House of Representatives, Rep. Sandy Layman, R-Cohasset, announced she wouldn’t seek re-election to the House District 5B seat after all.


House District 5B includes Pine River, Backus, Chickamaw Beach and McKinley, Bull Moose, Pine River, Barclay, Deerfield, Powers and Ponto Lake townships in Cass County, as well as other parts of Cass and Itasca counties.

Layman said in an email announcement sent just after candidate filings for state offices closed Tuesday, June 2, that she decided not to run again to have more flexibility to prioritize her private life.

Before filings closed, Spencer Igo, a Republican from Grand Rapids, filed to run against Joe Abeyta, a Democrat from Grand Rapids, for the House District 5B seat.

Cities, townships, school boards

The filing period for cities and school districts that do not have primaries and for township offices will be July 28-Aug. 11.

Nancy Vogt may be reached at 218-855-5877 or Follow her on Facebook and on Twitter at

Nancy Vogt is editor of the Pineandlakes Echo Journal, a weekly newspaper that covers eight communities in the Pequot Lakes-Pine River areas - from Nisswa to Hackensack and Pequot Lakes to Crosslake.

She started as editor of the Lake Country Echo in July 2006, and continued in that role when the Lake Country Echo and the Pine River Journal combined in September 2013 to become the Pineandlakes Echo Journal. She worked for the Brainerd Dispatch from 1992-2006 in various roles.

She covers Nisswa, Pequot Lakes, Lake Shore and Crosslake city councils, as well as writes feature stories, news stories and personal columns (Vogt's Notes). She also takes photos at community events.

Contact her at or 218-855-5877 with story ideas or questions. Be sure to leave a voicemail message!
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