The Minnesota House election is over. The Republicans and Democrats have picked their new leaders.
Time to hand out superlatives.
Which Minnesota House election attracted the most voters? Which candidate won by the most? Which district decided to do the most writing? What makes the next House leaders stand out? We checked the results, dug into history and came up with some interesting tidbits:
Voters in the well-to-do city of Edina cast nearly 20,000 ballots in that Minnesota House race — more than voters of any other district. DFL Rep. Ron Erhardt, a former House Republican, beat GOP candidate Dario Anselmo, to take 47A with 51 percent of the vote.
Hello, St. Paul?
Just four miles from the Minnesota Capitol, many voters in St. Paul’s 67A gave the House race a pass, with fewer than 7,500 casting ballots in that race. DFL Rep. Tim Mahoney, in his eighth term, won with 5,400 votes — 72 percent. That gave him a vote percentage that bested most of his colleagues.
You’re the tops
Highest percentage of the vote: Rep. Tim O’Driscoll, R-Sartell. He got 97.48 percent in an unopposed race.
Most votes: Rep. Jim Davnie, DFL-Minneapolis with 15,026 votes.
In southern Minnesota, 459 voters of House District 23B wrote in candidates, more than any other district. The high number may not be surprising — Rep. Tony Cornish, R-Vernon Center, was unopposed, so voters there could vote for him or pencil in another option.
Minnesota-House Speaker Designate Kurt Daudt will take the House’s top post in January starting only this third legislative term. He is the first speaker with that little seniority since the 1930, according to the Minnesota Legislative Reference Library.
There and back again
House Speaker Paul Thissen, DFL-Minneapolis, was selected by DFL colleagues to lead them in the minority next year. It’s a role that’s familiar to him. He was the DFL’s minority leader from 2011 to 2012 and became speaker in 2013, when the DFL took over the House. We found one other case of a leader making that journey — Aubrey Dirlam about 40 years ago. But, unlike Thissen, there was a time gap between when he served as minority leader, then speaker, then minority leader again.
DFLers won the House in 2008 (after first winning it in 2006). Republicans took it over in 2010. Two years later, DFLers were back in control. Last Tuesday, the House majority flipped again, back to the GOP. The quick turnaround of party power — four times in four election cycles — is the speediest the Star Tribune could find on record.
Rachel E. Stassen-Berger • Twitter: @RachelSB