Monday, October 20, 2008

Minnesota's 3rd

Today the Washington Post has a rundown of Minnesota's congressional 3rd district. It's significant because it's an open seat, one of the top races to watch, in the wake of moderate Republican Jim Ramstad's retirement. Iraq war veteran Ashwin Madia is running on his student government experience at the University of Minnesota, my alma matter, against a fiscal conservative Erik Paulson that tries to paint himself as the next Ramstad -- except he has a high rating from Minnesota Citizens Concerned for Life.

If Madia manages to win, he's slightly ahead of Paulson in the most recent poll, this would signify a major shift for the district that's dominated by one of Minneapolis' most wealth suburbs, Edina. The suburb is home to many of the wealthiest Minnesotans, so someone like Ramstad, who built himself as a socially liberal but fiscally conservative Republican, represented the district well. Some of the national momentum, and the fact that the DCCC can sink more money into downticket races thanks to Obama's ability to raise money on his own, means that weirdly enough, this district may end up going blue this election season.

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