DFL Rep. Terry Morrow and GOP Rep. Steve Gottwalt both officially resigned on Monday, ushering in special elections to fill the seats they just won.
Morrow, of St. Peter, announced last month that he would not serve. Instead, he took a job with the Chicago-based Uniform Law Commission. Gottwalt, of St. Cloud, announced last week that he would resign this month. He, too, has a new job as the director of state legislative policy for the Center for Diagnostic Imaging.
Although the dates of the special elections to fill the seats could not be set until they had handed in their resignations, candidates have already started lining up to replace them.
Among those who have said they will vie for the Morrow seat: Republicans Allen Quist, who vied to unseat U.S. Rep. Tim Walz last year, and Jim Golgart; and DFLers Karl Johnson and Robin Courrier. Update: Republican Joel Brinker also said Monday that he would run.
Morrow ran unopposed last year. In his district, Quist won 37 percent of the vote to Walz's 63 percent; Democratic President Barack Obama picked up 52 percent to Republican Mitt Romney's 45 percent and Democratic U.S. Sen. Amy Klobuchar netted 67 percent to Republican challenge Kurt Bills' 28 percent.
Meanwhile, over the weekend Tama Theis, of St. Cloud, said she would vie for the Republican endorsement for Gottwalt’s seat.
Gottwalt won his election with 54 percent of the vote. Romney won his district with 50 percent of the vote to Obama's 48 percent; Democratic challenger Jim Graves won 57 percent of the vote to Republican U.S. Rep. Michele Bachmann's 42 percent and Klobuchar 63 percent to Bills' 32 percent.