If the whole Dayton clan gathers for Thanksgiving this year, there could be some very interesting political conversations.
There would be Mark, of course, who by then either will be the governor-elect or the defeated DFL candidate. And there would be several longtime Republican Daytons.
And then, the Independence Party Daytons, which at the moment include one publicly announced member — Toby, a cousin, who on Tuesday sent out an e-mail to associates expressing his support for the IP’s Tom Horner and asking them to spread the word.
Wrote Toby, who describes himself as a strong DFLer:
“Unless asked (or provoked), I’m not typically one that aggressively pushes my political views on others … but this is a critical election for Minnesota. It is also a critical period of time for the entire country, with increasing polarization and horrendous dysfunction in capitals across the U.S.
“Fortunately for us in Minnesota, we have a candidate for Governor that represents the sensible middle ground between extremists on both left and right, and that’s why I’m strongly supporting Tom Horner’s campaign. There is no question that Tom Horner stands as the strongest candidate to lead Minnesota. … His campaign is gaining significant momentum, and if you’re still undecided about who to vote for, I urge you to consider voting for Tom Horner.”
In the e-mail, Toby Dayton, the president and CEO of JobDig who also serves on MinnPost’s board of directors, cited the wide array of newspaper endorsements Horner received Sunday. He also noted options for financially supporting Horner.
The high-profile Dayton family has long been known for its civic involvement, and Mark Dayton frequently comments about how he grew up in a Republican family, headed by his 92-year-old father, Bruce.
At this point, none of the Daytons has come out publicly in support of Republican candidate Tom Emmer, though at least one other Dayton — Mark’s uncle, Doug — has attended a Horner fundraiser.
Asked to respond to Toby Dayton’s email, the Dayton campaign said it would have no comment.