DC Memo: Minnesota is no longer the largest turnout state

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WASHINGTON — Fewer Americans voted midterm on Tuesday than in 2018. Minnesota was part of that trend, and the state lost its status as the highest voter turnout in the nation.

That honor went to Oregon this year, where 68% of voters turned out at the polls, breaking the state’s 2018 record. Second place went to Maine, where 61.6% of eligible voters in the state cast their ballots midterm, according to a Washington Post analysis of data from the Associated Press and the US Elections Project.

Minnesota came third.

According to the Minnesota Secretary of State’s office, the unofficial turnout on Tuesday was about 60.66%. There were 2,511,617 Minnesotans who voted out of 4,140,218 eligible voters. In 2018, a midterm characterized by strong voter enthusiasm, voter turnout in Minnesota was 63.8%.

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Still, midterm turnout is generally lower than in a presidential election year, and by all indicators, Tuesday’s midterm drew relatively high turnout. (Minnesota’s 2020 election turnout topped 79%)

“I am proud of the people of Minnesota who continue to participate in democracy at such high levels,” said Minnesota Secretary of State Steve Simon. “Every election is different and there are a variety of reasons people choose to vote or not to vote. For my part, I am committed to ensuring that every Minnesotan knows that their vote counts and can make a difference in their life.

Votes are still counted and in some states it can take weeks to find out the exact number of those who voted. But, according to the Washington Post analysis, votes counted so far have shown divergent turnouts across the country.

In Mississippi and West Virginia, less than 35% of eligible voters turned out at the polls.

Election over, Emmer campaigns for House leader

As the votes were still being counted and control of the next Congress had not been determined, Rep. Tom Emmer, R-6eon Thursday outlined his vision for a Republican-led House, with himself in the No. 3 leadership position.

Emmer emailed all House GOP members and newly elected House members explaining why he should become the next GOP House Whip, touting his work as head of the National Campaign Committee republican.

“For the past four years, you have trusted me to lead the NRCC and help us regain the majority. With your unwavering support, we have fulfilled this mission,” Emmer wrote.

Emmer helped flip 15 Democratic seats in 2020, but that wasn’t enough for Republicans to grab the gavel from House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif.

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The GOP could remove Pelosi as president after the final votes for this midterm are tallied, but that majority should be much slimmer than the GOP had hoped.

Still, Emmer told fellow Republicans that the GOP “helped elect the most talented and diverse group of Republican lawmakers ever and I’m incredibly proud of the team we’ve built.”

“As I have told many of you, you run to win and you win to rule. This is why I ask for your support to be the next Majority Whip to help us deliver on the promises of government we made to the American people,” Emmer wrote.

Emmer also released a list of 38 mentions of other House Republicans and about half a dozen freshmen elected to the United States House. Those incoming freshmen included Ryan Zinke of Montana and Mike Lawler of New York, who defeated Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee Chairman Sean Patrick Maloney.

Minnesota Republican lawmakers — Reps. Pete Stauber, Michelle Fischbach and Brad Finstad — were also on the list of mentions.

In the contest for the House GOP whip, Emmer faces two tough rivals, Reps. Jim Banks, R-Ind., and Drew Ferguson, R-Ga.

Rep. Guy Reschenthaler of Pennsylvania, who is leading Emmer’s campaign for majority whip, said Emmer would win despite Tuesday’s disappointing results for the GOP, which had hoped a “red wave” would sweep over the country.

“Emmer will always win,” Reschenthaler said. “Tom is the guy who helped us get seats last cycle when we were supposed to get carried away. He took seats (Tuesday.)”

Referring to the expectation of a slimmer-than-expected House GOP majority, Reschenthaler said “we’re going to need one hell of a whipping operation.”

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“That’s why we need someone as qualified as Emmer in this position,” the Pennsylvania Republican said.

Larry Jacobs, director of the Center for the Study of Politics and Governance at the Hubert H. Humphrey School of Public Affairs at the University of Minnesota, said Emmer should be judged by his colleagues on “all of his work.” .

“And the whole work understands that he took Republicans from a minority to a majority,” Jacobs said.

The House leadership races are scheduled for next Tuesday, but that could change.

In these elections, House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif., is seeking to be Speaker of the House and current Republican Whip, Rep. Steve Scalise, R-La., is running for House Leader. majority in the House.

“November Surprise”

Meanwhile, Emmer, who led House GOP candidates to make crime and the economy major campaign issues, told the Washington Post it explores whether concerns about election deniers were a factor in Democrats’ success on Election Day.

“We have to wait and see,” he said.

President Biden has been roundly criticized by members of his own party for making threats to democracy the latest campaign argument. Former President Obama also repeated this theme in a flurry of last-minute campaign stops for leading Democratic candidates.

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On Wednesday, Biden said warnings about the dangers to American democracy had struck a chord.

“Voters have made their concerns clear and they have sent a clear and unequivocal message that they want to preserve our democracy,” Biden said at a press conference on Wednesday.

Tuesday’s election results — which at the end of the week left not just the makeup of the House but the fate of the Senate up in the air — have left much torpor in the GOP about the former president’s impact. Trump, the quality of some GOP candidates and party messaging.

Among those questioning the reason for the results was Tom Weiler, a Republican who lost his bid to oust Rep. Dean Phillips, D-3rd.

“70% (sic) of Minnesotans felt our country was heading in the wrong direction before Election Day. 100% (sic) of Minnesota State (sic) and Congressional incumbents won re-election on Election Day. November Surprise,” Weiler tweeted.

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