Posted at 4:09 PM on January 20, 2011
by Tom Scheck
Evie Axdahl and Brian Sullivan will announce tonight at the Minnesota Republican Party's State Executive Committee meeting that they are resigning their respective posts as RNC Committeewomman and RNC Committeeman. Axdahl and Sullivan confirmed the moves to MPR News.
Axdahl says she's resigning because her husband is in poor health and she believes that "my family is my first priority." She was first elected as RNC Committeewoman in 1989. She said she's most proud that women have a greater role in politics.
"We have started getting women more active and giving them more confidence in participating in politics," Axdahl said. "I think we confirmed that during the last election."
Sullivan has served as RNC Committeeman for six years. He was a one-time candidate for governor. He told MPR News that his resignation will be effective at the election of his successor at the next state central meeting.
"My various business interests and charitable activities were taking more and more time, making it difficult to continue serving as National Committeeman. In addition, having served almost six years in this role, I thought it was a good time for someone else to have the opportunity to serve," Sullivan said in an e-mail.
The RNC Committee members serve two roles. They help direct the party at the state level on the MNGOP's Executive Committee. They have a vote on the Republican National Committee.
The election for each of their successors will likely occur at the April state party central committee meeting. It will be a one year term. Another four year term starts in 2012.
Several names have surfaced to replace Axdahl and Sullivan. Former GOP state Rep. Laura Brod, former State Auditor Pat Anderson, Janet Beihoffer, Mary Igo and Margaret Cavanaugh are all said to be considering a run.
MNGOP Treasurer Dave Sturrock, former state Rep. and gubernatorial hopeful Tom Emmer, Hennepin County Board member Jeff Johnson and former MNGOP executive director Ben Golnik are also said to be considering a run to replace Sullivan.
Update: Sturrock says he's running for reelection as MNGOP Treasurer.