Owner of raided Duluth shop files to run for president
August 13, 2012 — 11:34am
The owner of a Duluth store that has been raided by police for allegedly selling synthetic marijuana will be the Grassroots Party's candidate for U.S. President, the party said Monday.
Jim Carlson. owner of "The Last Place on Earth," was named in petitions submitted to the Minnesota Secretary of State's office by the Grassroots Party. Grassroots is a perennial minor party that seeks to promote the legalization of marijuana, and its presidential ticket first appeared on Minnesota's ballot in 1986.
Carlson is listed as the party's candidate for U.S. president; George McMahon is listed as the vice presidential candidate.
The Socialist Workers Party, which seeks to be the party of the working class in opposition to capitalism, also filed petitions for its presidential candidate, James Harris, and its vice-presidential candidate, Maura DeLuca.
The Secretary of state has 10 days to verify the petitions to determine if the names will appear on the Nov. 6 general election ballot.
Unlike major parties, such as the Republican, Democratic-Farmer-Labor and Independence parties, minor parties must gather petitions to get their candidates names on the Minnesota ballot. The Socialist Workers Party has been on the ballot in Minnesota since 1948, and hopes to be on the ballot in eight states this year.
"The historic role of minor parties is to 'test drive' controversial reforms, in order to show fearful or skeptical professional politicians that popular support for such reform really exist,'' the Grassroots Party said in a statement.
The Grassroots Party said Carlson did not seek the position but "accepted a draft from Grassroots Party activists." Since he announced his candidacy, his store was raided, his assets and car were seized and the city of Duluth filed a public nuisance charge against him, the party said in a statement.
Rep. Roz Peterson, R-Lakeville, said at a Monday news conference that a constituent had contacted her after receiving a voter registration form from MNsure, the state-run health insurance exchange, even though the person in question is already registered to vote and does not purchase health insurance through MNsure.