Minnesota Rep. Angie Craig wins toss-up race to clinch third term

Associated Press/Manuel Balce Ceneta,
In this June 24, 2020, photo, Rep. Angie Craig, D-Minn., speaks during news conference on Capitol Hill in Washington.

Rep. Angie Craig is projected to win a third term on Tuesday in the highly contested battleground of Minnesota’s 2nd District, preserving a Democratic seat that was among the top pickup opportunities for Republicans this year. 

The Associated Press called the race at 1:20 a.m.

Craig, who arrived in Congress in 2018 as part of the blue wave that gave Democrats control of the House, defeated Republican Tyler Kistner, a Marine Corps veteran, in the heavily suburban region south of the Twin Cities. 

The contest was a rematch of the race in 2020, when Craig prevailed by just over 2 percentage points in a district President Biden carried by more than 7 points.

Republicans thought they had a much better shot this year, with an unpopular Democratic president in the White House and voters’ economic anxieties at a fever pitch, particularly with inflation on the rise. GOP leaders have blamed the Democrats’ legislative agenda for driving inflationary trends, and Kistner was no exception, hammering Craig over her support for trillions of dollars in new spending on programs to tackle climate change and the COVID-19 pandemic. 

He also sought to link Craig to high-profile liberals like Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.). 

But Craig, a former health care executive, defended her record, highlighting the many benefits provided to working Americans as part of the Democrats’ agenda, including provisions to reduce health care costs. 

She sought to distance herself from some of the leaders of her party, sidestepping a question in August about whether Biden should run for another term, responding instead that the Democratic Party needs “new leaders in Washington up and down the ballot.”

She also went after Kistner on the issue of abortion, saying his support of state-based restrictions would empower politicians to wrest health decisions away from people and their doctors. 

For the two-term Democrat, the sum of those arguments proved enough to win a third. 

Tags 2022 Midterms House Angie Craig Biden Minnesota Nancy Pelosi

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