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Tracking Minnesota’s political scene and keeping you up-to-date on those elected to serve you

MyPillow mogul denies report that he might run for Minn. governor

Mike Lindell, the informercial king who sells a pillow he dubs "guaranteed the most comfortable pillow you'll ever own," denied a report from conservative Web site that he is mulling a run for governor of Minnesota. 

Alpha News reported Tuesday that when Lindell was asked about a jump from his pillow success to politics, he said, "I'm not ruling it out." 

Lindell said it's a misunderstanding. "People have called me, and I’ve said absolutely not," Lindell said in a telephone interview from Washington. He is attending the inauguration of the next president; he was a major backer of Donald Trump during the campaign and spoke at Trump's last minute Minnesota rally at the Twin Cities airport.  

"I want to get this nipped in the bud," Lindell said of the speculation. 

Lindell  rocketed to fame with his Chaska-based MyPillow, fueled by heavy rotation on late night TV ads. Last year, the company paid $1 million in civil penalties to settle a deceptive ad case over its health claims brought by prosecutors in nine California counties.

Trump's unconventional electoral success would seem to make a Lindell candidacy more viable. 

Lindell said he is too busy with his company and the continued rollout of the Lindell Foundation, which he founded in 2016. The foundation will soon provide help for the needy of urban Minneapolis and St. Paul, he said. 

Despite his denial that he is considering a run, he declined to close the door completely, citing the possibility of divine intervention: "Anything can happen with Mike Lindell," he said.

He added: "If God had me do something, I would do it." 

Ellison says he won't attend Trump's inauguration

WASHINGTON -- Rep. Keith Ellison will not attend the inauguration this week of Donald Trump, saying on Monday he will not “celebrate a man who preaches a politics of division and hate.”

Ellison made the announcement on Martin Luther King Jr.’s holiday and cited that he was standing with Rep. John Lewis in his decision — an African-American civil rights icon who was beaten and jailed in the 1960s fighting for civil rights.

Lewis said last week he didn’t consider Trump a “legitimate president,” which sparked the president-elect to take to Twitter to criticize Lewis, saying he was “talk, talk, talk” and that he should work more on his district which he called in “horrible shape” and “falling apart.” Since Trump’s tweets, more than 15 members of Congress have said they will boycott the Friday festivities in Washington. Lewis and Ellison are both members of the Congressional Black Caucus.

“No question I am standing with John Lewis and the millions of people around the country who have been targeted by @realDonaldTrump,” Ellison posted on Twitter. “The time is always right to do what is right. And in the face of so much hate, the right thing to do is reject it.”

The other ten Minnesota Congressional delegation members – three Republicans and seven Democrats – confirmed plans to attend the inauguration, including both Sens. Amy Klobuchar and Al Franken.

Ellison is vying to be elected chairman of the Democratic National Committee – a purely political and partisan job. He says he will resign his House seat if chosen by members in February.