Pederson drops out of 6th Congressional District race
January 3, 2014 — 7:33pm
Republican state Sen. John Pederson told supporters on Friday that he was dropping out of the race to replace U.S. Rep. Michele Bachmann.
"It has become apparent to me that I cannot continue this campaign and still balance my other priorities in life. Because of this conflict I have decided to withdraw my name from the race," he said.
Pederson, of St. Cloud, faced a crowded field in the heavily Republican district. Former gubernatorial candidate Tom Emmer, former state lawmaker Phil Krinkie and Anoka County Commissioner Rhonda Sivarajah are all running for the GOP nod.
"This decision is a personal choice, and is in no way a reflection upon the countless contributors and volunteers who have helped me these past six months," Pederson said.
Pederson, who sent out an e-mail fundraising appeal last week, told the St. Cloud Times that he would have had enough funds to continue in the race.
According to a campaign finance report he filed late last fall, he had about $40,000 cash on hand. At that point, Krinkie had $315,000; Emmer had $275,000 and Sivarajah had $184,000. Krinkie and Sivarajah lent their campaign considerable cash, boosting their finance numbers.
Gov. Mark Dayton, speaking to a mostly Republican audience at the annual Minnesota Business Partnership dinner, repeated his familiar attack on the House GOP, blaming them for a legislative impasse on transportation.
Republican Tom Emmer's campaign says he raised $150,000 this quarter; Republican John Pederson raised $52,000. Republican Phil Krinkie said he plunked down $300,000 of his own money; Rhonda Sivarajah said she had loan her campaign $150,000.
Former gubernatorial candidate and state Rep. Tom Emmer is the leading fundraiser in the race to replace retiring Republican U.S. Rep. Michele Bachmann. His opponents continue to rely largely on their own bank accounts.