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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
When Rep. Martin Sabo announced his retirement last month, about a dozen DFL candidates started lining up to replace him. They range from a Dairy Queen owner to a university professor. At a forum on Sunday, they touted their political chops. (04/23/2006)
Three of four candidates for the 6th District seat signed a pledge to honor the party endorsement process. But a fourth refused to sign, although he says he'll abide by it. (04/21/2006)
The common campaign theme among the Republican challengers is that Congress doesn't just need more Republicans, it needs more conservative Republicans. (04/17/2006)
Just ahead of a due date for property tax payments - and just weeks before the fall election - rebate checks averaging $205 would begin arriving in the mailboxes of homeowners if House Republican lawmakers get their way. (04/10/2006)
There's always some politics in every policy debate at the Legislature. Republican Reps. Phil Krinkie and Jim Knoblach are taking that to a higher level at the Capitol, because they're running against each other for the same Congressional seat. Some say they're trying to "out-conservatize" each other. (04/07/2006)
Even though the Legislature doesn't have a budget to balance this year, there are a number of tax-related proposals on the table, including eliminating the so-called marriage penalty, raising the state sales tax and the increasing the income tax. (Midday, 04/06/2006)
As part of the Minnesota Chamber's Business Day at the Capitol on April 6, 2006, Rep. Jeff Johnson and Rep. Matt Entenza debated issues in their race for attorney general. (04/06/2006)
The Iraq war has lost lots of support among Americans. What do the members of the Minnesota delegation think we should do now? (04/05/2006)
Ending more than a year of gridlock, a Senate committee today finally held a hearing on -- and then voted down -- a controversial bill that would put the definition of marriage on November's ballot as an amendment to the state constitution. (04/04/2006)
Democratic state Sen. Sharon Marko withdrew Wednesday from Minnesota's 2nd Congressional District race, making a fall matchup between FBI whistleblower Coleen Rowley and Republican Rep. John Kline a near certainty. (03/29/2006)
U.S. Rep. Martin Sabo, DFL-Minn., announced Saturday that he won't seek a 15th term in Congress. (Midday, 03/20/2006)
"In my gut I know the time is right," the Minneapolis DFLer said on Saturday as he announced the end of his political career. (03/18/2006)
University of Minnesota political scientist Larry Jacobs says Martin Sabo's decision to retire is "momentous," and the time of the announcement is "strange." (03/17/2006)
Martin Sabo is holding a press conference Saturday to announce he's not seeking re-election. The 5th District Democrat has been a member of Congress representing Minneapolis for 28 years. (03/17/2006)
Jacob Wetterling Foundation officials say they've been considering the name change for several years, but one board member says Patty Wetterling's political campaign is also playing a role in the possible change. (03/10/2006)