Former WCCO news anchor Don Shelby played down reports of his interest in a congressional run Thursday night, but didn’t rule it out.
In a belated email to the Star Tribune after a visit to the dentist, Shelby said he is “flattered” to be approached, but added he is “still a reporter.”
He also expressed some reluctance at being defined as a Democrat, which could be a prerequisite of challenging GOP Rep. Erik Paulsen in the Third District in the western suburbs of Minneapolis.
In his own words:
“I'm flattered I would be approached, but truth is, I'm not much of a partisan and my politics, for what they are, are a little goofy. I would be a terrible congressman. I would rat out every special interest hack and poser. Still a reporter. Therefore, I would be relegated to some form of quarantine.“
Nevertheless, Shelby acknowledged that Paulsen’s swing district could be in play. “Third can be won by a Democrat. It voted for Kerry, and Obama twice. But, that would make me a Democrat, if I ran. They are pushing hard, the Washington crowd. They think this is winnable, and I'm a guy who might do it. But, that would mean that I had written my last news story. I may just keep trying to bring ideologies together on science as a journalist.”
(Update: President George W. Bush won the Third District in 2004, beating Democrat John Kerry 51-to-48).