Retiring Democratic rep to run for lieutenant governor in Minnesota

Retiring Democratic rep to run for lieutenant governor in Minnesota
© Greg Nash

Rep. Rick NolanRichard (Rick) Michael NolanMinnesota New Members 2019 Republicans pick up seat in Minnesota’s ‘Iron range’ How America’s urban-rural divide is changing the Democratic Party MORE (D-Minn.), who announced his plans to retire from Congress earlier this year, is running for lieutenant governor in his home state, he said on Monday.

Nolan will serve as running mate to Minnesota Attorney General Lori Swanson, who launched her surprise gubernatorial bid after the state party declined to endorse her reelection bid at last weekend's convention.

While Nolan had initially announced his decision to retire earlier this year, adding he wouldn't run for governor, he called Swanson's offer, which came this weekend, "compelling."

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The new ticket joins a crowded primary that includes another fellow member of the Minnesota congressional delegation.

Rep. Tim WalzTimothy (Tim) James WalzMinnesota New Members 2019 GOP earns House victory in Minnesota State elections reveal a deeply divided America MORE (D-Minn.), who is running on a ticket with state auditor Rebecca Otto, had been seen as the frontrunner in the race. But Walz also lost the state party's endorsement at the convention — delegates instead endorsed Democratic state Rep. Erin Murphy's ticket.

Announcing the ticket on Monday, the two candidates argued their bid would find ways to reach consensus and bring the state together in a contentious political era. Democrats have a strong record of statewide success in Minnesota; President TrumpDonald John TrumpBroward County official Brenda Snipes submits resignation after criticism Retired lieutenant general tears into Trump over attacks against Navy SEAL: 'Disgusting' Senate barrels toward showdown over Trump's court picks MORE lost the state by less than 2 points in 2016.

"We are convinced beyond any doubt that there's widespread common agreement," Nolan said on the key priorities for everyday Americans. "That's what we are going to search for — the common ground, fix things and get things done."

While the ticket is a late entry to the race, voters will not cast their ballots until August.