Former Lt. Gov. Michelle Fischbach Announces Run For MN 7th Congressional District
PAYNESVILLE, Minn. – Former GOP Lt. Gov. and State Sen. Michelle Fischbach has announced her candidacy for Minnesota’s 7th Congressional District.
The seat has been held by Democratic House Agriculture Chairman Rep. Collin Peterson since 1991.
“Collin Peterson no longer represents Western Minnesota values. One of his first votes this Congress was to ban the wall, and he votes against President Trump 85 percent of the time. Unlike Peterson, I will work with President Trump to secure our borders, build the wall, fight against the Democrats’ socialist agenda, and keep America great,” Fischbach said in a statement.
Once Fischbach announced her run for CD7, the website and political newsletter Sabato’s Crystal Ball changed its rating for the race from leans Democrat to a toss-up.
Fischbach was first elected to the Minnesota Senate in 1996 and served until 2018. She was the state’s first female President of the Senate from 2011-2012. She became Acting Lieutenant Governor in January 2018 after former Lt. Gov. Tina Smith was appointed to the U.S. Senate once Al Franken resigned.
Fischbach tried to keep her Senate seat and be Lieutenant Governor at the same time arguing a memo from the senate’s nonpartisan counsel, which cited an 1898 state supreme court decision as a reason she could serve in both offices. An opinion issued by former Attorney General Lori Swanson disputed Fischbach’s legal ability to serve in both offices at once, citing a 1972 constitutional amendment. Fischbach resigned from the Senate on May 25th, 2018 and was sworn in as Lieutenant Governor. Lawsuits in the matter cost taxpayers more than $146,000.
Fischbach was Tim Pawlenty’s running mate in his 2018 race for governor.
Other candidates campaigning for the 7th District’s GOP nomination include 21 year Air Force Veteran Dave Hughes of Karlstad who lost to Peterson in 2016 and 2018. 29 year Army veteran Joel Novak of Alexandria and teacher and Pastor Jayesun Sherman of Windom are also running.