Congress: 8th District
Patty Wetterling's uncertain political future
Few areas have beene so staunchly DFL as Minnesota's 8th District. But there are signs that things are changing. In 2000, issues such as gun control and the environment appeared to move things to a more Republian leaning. George W. Bush lost the 8th District to Al Gore, but by a comparatively small margin from previous elections. That's compared to previous years when statewide DFL candidates began their campaigns with the assumption that the 8th was theirs, and campaign strategies focused their attention in more "swing" districts.
The 8th District, which includes communities such as Duluth, Hibbing, Virginia, and Eveleth, historically is a blue-collar district. Life today is often difficult, as employment is well below the 1970s level. Factories are closing and mines are shutting down.
About 28.4 percent of residents in the 8th district make a living as doctors, lawyers, managers and other professionals and 24.5 percent work in 9 to 5 office jobs as salespeople, administrative assistants or secretaries, for example. Another 17.1 percent are employed in transportation and production, jobs courted by powerful unions. Median household income is $39,952 a year and the median value of a home is $92,300. Married couples make up 56 percent of the district's households, and those with children represent 23.5 percent.
Democrat Patty Wetterling lost her bid for Congress by 30,000 votes. But political observers say Wetterling, as a first-time candidate, made a good showing against incumbent Republican Mark Kennedy. Now many wonder about Wetterling's political future.
Minnesota members of Congress return to Washington
Minnesota is sending back all of the state's incumbents to Congress. Republican Mark Kennedy defeated DFL challenger Patty Wetterling in the race that garnered most of the attention. Kennedy received 54 percent of the vote in Minnesota's 6th District to Wetterling's 46 percent of the vote. Kennedy's victory means that Minnesota's congressional delegation will be split with four Republicans and four Democrats. Members of both parties say they hope to put the recent partisan rhetoric behind them when they go back to Washington.
Gutkencht confident of eighth term
For more than a decade, Republican Gil Gutknecht has represented the 1st District in the U.S. House of Representatives. He's won his last few races handily. This year's election is unlikely to be any different. In fact Gutknecht is so confident he's barely campaigning at all.
Meet the Candidates: Mark Kennedy and Patty Wetterling
The congressional race in Minnesota's 6th District has been one of the most closely watched in the country. In what would otherwise be a relatively safe reelection campaign, Republican Mark Kennedy is facing a challenge from a very well-known first-time candidate: missing children's advocate Patty Wetterling. Minnesota Public Radio's Meet the Candidates series continues with back-to-back interviews with Kennedy and Wetterling.
1st District and 5th District debates
Minnesota Public Radio's Meet the Candidates series continues with the congressional candidates in the 1st and 5th Districts.
3rd District debate
Minnesota Public Radio's Meet the Candidates series continues with the 3rd District congressional candidates, incumbent Republican Jim Ramstad and his DFL challenger Deborah Watts. In the 2nd half hour, a look at the Senate races in South Dakota and Wisconsin.
Meet the candidates: 2nd Congressional District
A live Minnesota Public Radio debate between the candidates running for Minnesota's 2nd Congressional District. Republican John Kline is in his first term in the U.S. Congress and is defending his seat against Democrat Teresa Daly. Independence Party candidate Doug Williams was also invited to participate in the debate but did not respond.
Meet the candidates: 4th Congressional District
A live Minnesota Public Radio debate between the candidates running for Minnesota's 4th Congressional District. Betty McCollum, a two-term Democratic incumbent, is defending her seat against Republican Patrice Bataglia. Independence Party candidate Peter Vento was also invited to participate in the debate but did not respond.
Sixth District candidates debate
Sixth District Republican Congressman Mark Kennedy is defending his seat from well-known missing children's advocate Patty Wetterling, a Democrat. They square off at a Sunday evening debate in St. Paul sponsored by the League of Women Voters and KSTP-TV. Minnesota Public Radio broadcasts the debate as part of our "Meet the Candidates" series.
Kennedy, Wetterling stage final 6th District debate
Incumbent Republican Mark Kennedy and his Democratic challenger Patty Wetterling are involved in one of Minnesota's hottest congressional races. Their final debate was broadcast live from a Twin Cities television station.
Negative ads suggest close race in Minnesota's 6th District
Republican Mark Kennedy and the National Republican Congressional Committee are stepping up their criticism of DFLer Patty Wetterling. Both Kennedy and the NRCC are running television advertisements questioning Wetterling's credibility as a candidate and the special interest groups that support her. Wetterling says the ads are unfair and has countered with an ad of her own questioning the Republican tactics.
Congressional candidates debate in St. Cloud
The two candidates for Minnesota's 6th Congressional District met over the weekend for their second debate in St. Cloud. Incumbent Republican Mark Kennedy and Democratic challenger Patty Wetterling showed contrasting opinions on topics ranging from Social Security to the war in Iraq.
In Minnesota's sprawling 6th District, the battleground may be TV
The candidates in Minnesota's 6th Congressional District are battling over the war on terrorism and homeland security. Republican Congressman Mark Kennedy has been running an ad suggesting DFL opponent Patty Wetterling opposes the war in Afghanistan. Wetterling says Kennedy is misleading voters and has been running her own ads touting her accomplishments in fighting crime.
Hard feelings mark Minnesota's 2nd District race
Republican Congressman John Kline and DFL Challenger Teresa Daly met on Monday for their second debate. The two candidates are running in Minnesota's 2nd Congressional District, which includes some southern Twin Cities suburbs and stretches south into Red Wing and Faribault. The 2002 race in Minnesota's 2nd was fiercely competitive, with Kline and DFL opponent Bill Luther both claiming the other was using underhanded tactics to get elected. The current race is likely to follow suit since both candidates are claiming their their opponent is engaged in mudslinging.
Kennedy, Wetterling debate issues in 6th District race
Republican Congressman Mark Kennedy and DFL challenger Patty Wetterling met in their first head-to-head debate on Sunday in Minneapolis. The two candidates are running in Minnesota's 6th Congressional District, which takes up St. Cloud, the northern Twin Cities suburbs and eastern suburbs, such as Woodbury and Stillwater.