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7th District


SNAPSHOT
The 7th District is the mythical home of Lake Wobegon. Garrison Keillor has often noted that he was inspired by the small town in Stearns County -- pretty much split between German Catholics and Norwegian Lutherans. This is farming country, and as one would expect, its fortunes are tied to agricultural issues. The region is depopulating as more people give up the land. The district covers most of the western part of the state. Some of the "wheat growing" area is still heavily DFL, while Norwegian territory, such as Otter Tail County, is Republican.

It was in this district that -- in 1958 -- Congresswoman Coya Knutson lost an election after her husband urged her to "come home and make breakfast." In the 2000 presidential election, district voters chose Republican and former Texas Gov. George W. Bush over Democrat Al Gore. About 30.2 percent of residents in the 7th 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 18.1 percent are employed in transportation and production, jobs courted by powerful unions.

Candidates

Document Michael Barrett (R)
Ken Lucier (Const.)
Document Collin Peterson (D)

District Information

District map
Median age: 42
School age: 20%
Age 65+: 17%
Percent below poverty: 10%
Per capita income: $17,602
Median housing value: $79,760
Percent unemployed: 3%
Percent minority: 7%
Percent college graduate: 10%
Percent less than high school diploma: 12%

The Money Race

CandidateFunds
Collin Peterson $809,983
Michael Barrett $34,126
Coleen Rowley accused John Kline of "blind loyalty" to the Bush administration. Kline accused Rowley of violating her own call for integrity. (10/04/2006)
Minnesota's 1st Congressional District race has heated up. In a part of the state that has voted Republican for years, a Democratic challenger may have a chance. (10/04/2006)
Familiar names face off in the 8th District race this year. Long-time incumbent Democrat Jim Oberstar faces a challenge from Republican Rod Grams, the former TV news anchor who served both in the U.S. House and Senate. (10/02/2006)
The three candidates for Congress in Minnesota's 6th district offered distinctly different views and sharp exchanges on health care, taxes and the war in Iraq in a debate Thursday night. (09/21/2006)
The candidates for Minnesota's 6th Congressional District seat met for their first debate before a large audience Monday night in St. Cloud. (09/19/2006)
The three major-party candidates running for Congress in Minnesota's 5th Congressional District met in their first debate since Tuesday's primary. (09/15/2006)
Alan Fine is trying to do what Keith Ellison's DFL rivals couldn't: capitalize on reports of Ellison's past. Fine calls Ellison "unfit" to serve. (09/13/2006)
The seat has been dominated by DFLers for decades, but Ellison's Republican opponent in November says he'll question Ellison's character, a campaign theme that was used over the summer by Ellison's DFL opponents. (09/13/2006)
As the primary election nears, two of the DFLers running for Congress in Minnesota's 5th District say one of their opponents, Mike Erlandson, has gone negative. Erlandson sent out a mailing asking voters if Keith Ellison is above the law, and if Ember Reichgott Junge is out of touch with the district. (09/07/2006)
Former DFL Party Chair Mike Erlandson is touting the endorsement of one of the leading critics of the war in Iraq in an attempt to distinguish himself among the DFLers running for Minnesota's 5th Congressional District seat. (09/01/2006)
Midday hosts a live Minnesota State Fair debate between four of the DFL candidates hoping to succeed U.S. Rep. Martin Sabo in the House of Representatives. (Midday, 08/24/2006)
The DFL candidates in Minnesota's 5th Congressional District are busy campaigning just weeks before primary election day. Four of them will appear at debate at the Minnesota State Fair with the hopes of attracting DFL support. (08/24/2006)
President Bush mixed policy and politics into a four and a half hour trip to Minnesota Tuesday. The president led a panel discussion on health care in Minnetonka and later appeared at a fundraiser for Republican congressional candidate Michele Bachmann in Wayzata. (08/23/2006)
U.S. Rep. Gil Gutknecht will keep his place on the Sept. 12 primary election ballot after the state Supreme Court swiftly turned back a challenge to the petitions he used to qualify. (08/22/2006)
Increasing crime in Minneapolis is fueling concerns about public safety in Minnesota's 5th Congressional District, which includes the city and several suburbs. Candidates in the race for that seat are responding with a string of public safety proposals. One DFLer has even gotten the endorsement of Hennepin County's Republican sheriff. (08/01/2006)