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Marriage, voting amendments defeated; DFL retakes Minnesota Senate, House

MinnPost photo by Terry Gydesen
Vote No proponents celebrating the defeat of the ballot measure on Tuesday night.

In a historic development, Minnesota became the first of 30 states to defeat a ballot issue banning same-sex marriage.

With nearly 99 percent of the vote counted, the proposed amendment that would have put a gay marriage ban in the state constitution drew 51.3 percent in “no” votes, with 47.8 percent in favor and 1.3 percent not voting (the equivalent of a “no” vote).

Minnesotans also rejected the other proposed constitutional amendment, a measure that would have required voters to show a photo ID and would have changed the state’s voting system. “No” votes totaled 52.3 percent, with 47.8 percent in favor and 1 percent not voting.

Also, with incomplete returns, the DFL has regained control of both houses of the state Legislature, which they lost in 2010. The new Senate appears to have 39 DFLers  and 28 Republicans, with the House makeup appearing to be 73 DFLers and 61 Republicans.

Minnesota’s congressional changed, too, with Democrats retaking the 8th District, as former Congressman Rick Nolan beat GOP incumbent Chip Cravaack. Sixth District Congresswoman Michele Bachmann squeaked by Democratic challenger Jim Graves. The other six incumbents were re-elected.

Check back later this morning for complete coverage and analysis.

President Obama has won Minnesota as part of his national victory and Sen. Amy Klobuchar easily won a second term.

Minnesota House Majority Leader Matt Dean was leading in his race with new DFLer Greg Pariseau in redistricted District 38B. An earlier MinnPost story showed Dean losing in Ramsey County, but hadn’t include Washington County precincts in the race, too.

ABC News and CBS News called Minnesota for President Obama early, giving the state’s 10 electoral votes to the president. Other news outlets were holding off on the call, as of 9:30 p.m.

Amy Klobuchar  won re-election to a second term in the U.S Senate Tuesday, easily defeating Republican challenger Kurt Bills.

CBS, the AP and other organizations made the call for Klobuchar within minutes after the polls closed in Minnesota at 8 p.m.

Bills, a high school teacher and one-term state representative, won the Republican nomination with support from Ron Paul supporters but couldn’t muster enough support to overcome Klobuchar’s statewide popularity.

Klobuchar hasn’t strayed from her moderate Democratic roots and has received praise for her constituent work.

Klobochar beat Republican Mark Kennedy by a 58-38 margin to first win the seat in 2006, replacing Sen. Mark Dayton, who stepped down after one term (and went on to become governor in 2010).

Klobuchar had led consistently in the polling this year, usually by 20- to 40-point margins, and had high approval ratings.

Comments (17)

  1. Submitted by Beryl John-Knudson on 11/06/2012 - 10:50 pm.

    David Brooks rare compliment of Amy Klobucher…

    David Brooks in the middle of PBS campaign coverage just about an hour ago gave Amy Klobochar a pretty neat comment praising her generally non-sophisticated ; no uppity lady approach in her relationship to the Minnesota voters etc…maybe ‘down home’ was the word?

    It is a night for some celebration and worth quoting Brooks as it was a rare compliment indeed… Maybe somebody could add the direct quote of Brooks?

    As one from the farther left, I suppose this voter had hoped for more progressive reaching beyond the middle ground from Amy…but time will tell, who knows?

    Hope rises here for Obama!

  2. Submitted by craig furguson on 11/07/2012 - 06:34 am.

    Congratulations to the DFL

    And to everyone for surviving the election season. I’m democrat and my hope is that the MN DFL takes into the account the concerns of the almost-half of the population losing side and is judicious with their use of power, so that they all don’t get kicked out in two years during a low-turnout election cycle.

  3. Submitted by Pat Berg since 2011 on 11/07/2012 - 07:21 am.

    We got the Legislature back for Our Gov

    I couldn’t be happier.

    And good riddance to those hateful amendments!

  4. Submitted by David Mensing on 11/07/2012 - 07:39 am.

    Presidential Election=Turnout Turnout=Democratic Gains

    The same people didn’t turn out in 2012 that turned out in 2010. Young people and non-white people turned out in greater numbers and that trend is not likely to change, at least during presidential elections.

    In Minnesota, this is a great victory for Mark Dayton. Anything kicked down the street will now be solved by people friendly to Mr. Dayton (at least members of the same party). Both the Marriage Amendment and the Photo ID Amendment were defeated, both of which Dayton ardently opposed.

    Unless there are solutions, however, we could very well see everything change again in two years. No one elected yesterday, from the President on down, can rest on their laurels. There is serious work to be done.

    • Submitted by Pat Berg since 2011 on 11/07/2012 - 07:44 am.

      We need a GOTV effort for midterm elections

      and it needs to start now.

      What happened in 2010 is a great lesson to hold up as illustrating the importance of voting even when “President” is not one of the offices being offered on the ticket.

      We need to actively start working on educating people on the importance of going to the polls for ALL elections, because elections DO have consequences.

  5. Submitted by Kim Millman on 11/07/2012 - 07:57 am.

    Minnesota Dem House and Senate First Order of Business

    Congratulations Minnesota voters for having the common sense the Republican state leaders sadly lacked. Congratulations to Democratic House and Senate victors. Great work, I was pleasantly surprised.

    The New Democratic House and Senate’s first order of business ought to be to make an amendment of its own – making it harder to amend our state constitution to prevent the by-passing of our elected representative form of government with its requisite checks and balances. Second, to ensure that we have a proper way of vetting and electing judges in the future. And third, finding a way to remove big money influences in our state elections.

    • Submitted by Pat Berg since 2011 on 11/07/2012 - 08:21 am.

      One more idea

      Re-run that bill for crosschecking the election database with the felon database (the one Pawlenty vetoed) since that is the only form of “voter fraud” that had any kind of reality associated with it and yet would have been completely unaddressed by the procedures put forth in the ill-fated “Voter ID” amendment.

      Get that passed, and remove any remaining justification for taking another run at Voter ID.

  6. Submitted by Matt Haas on 11/07/2012 - 09:06 am.

    Oh to be a fly on the wall of a certain Archbishop’s office

    When the news of the marriage amendment defeat came down. Good luck repairing the damage to your church’s reputation.

    • Submitted by Arito Moerair on 11/07/2012 - 09:20 am.


      What can you say? Hate lost.

      As far as the archbishop, I would like to see the newly-minted DFL legislature draft some laws that crack down harshly on tax-exempt organizations that engage in politics.

    • Submitted by RB Holbrook on 11/07/2012 - 09:43 am.

      Gratias tibi ago, Minnesota!

      Can they excommunicate an entire state?

  7. Submitted by T J Simplot on 11/07/2012 - 09:13 am.

    I think Republicans need to learn that while they may have some good fiscal ideas, their social agenda is out of touch with most. I know a lot of people who were totally turned off by their support of gay marriage ban but like their fiscal policies.

    • Submitted by Greg Kapphahn on 11/07/2012 - 09:42 am.

      Those Were the OLD School Republicans They’re Thinking About

      The new brand of radical “conservatives” that have taken over the Republican Party (who are decidedly math challenged have NO actual sense of fiscal reality) ran the Older-style, fiscally conservative, socially moderate folks out of the party thirty years ago.

      If you take a good, solid, look at the fiscally-oriented things that Tim Pawlenty and our recent Republican-controlled legislature actually sought to accomplish it’s nothing more nor less than the pursuit of this selfish and self-serving philosophy:

      how can I manipulate government so that I and my friends get paid massive amounts of taxpayer money (privatization in all it’s many forms),…

      and never, EVER have to help pay for the programs that are making me and my friends rich on that taxpayer money,…

      and use our government to wipe out the voices of all those who might stand in our way: teachers, unions, voter disenfranchisement initiatives, etc.

      If your friend liked the old-school Republican Party, then he, together with all those like him, is going to have to show up, with a group of like-minded friends at his local precinct caucus and take the Republican Party back.

      I earnestly wish he/they would do so.

  8. Submitted by Nancy Triplett on 11/07/2012 - 09:53 am.

    And another idea

    I think it’s time Minnesota starts considering changing the law to allow early voting. This would seem like a good time for the Legislature to take some action on this issue.

  9. Submitted by Beryl John-Knudson on 11/07/2012 - 10:06 am.

    One lump or two for the T-party…

    …so what happened to all that fundamentalist conservative momentum, tea party etc…. and their lead presidential candidate unable to suck in enough voter appeal in spite of the money sent; now all wasted?

    All I can figure out is… in the beginning was the word and the word was with deception and Deception was the word….

    Guess you can’t fool all-of-the-people-some-of-the-time; or all of the time, somebody said some time ago.

  10. Submitted by Beth-Ann Bloom on 11/07/2012 - 10:27 am.

    Beautiful women

    What a treat to see 2 women at the top of this article who worked tirelessly to defeat the hateful amendment. It is easy to recognize strategists, fund raising, and ads. It is important to remmber the heart and commitment of volunteers who fill the gaps with coffee, flashlights, shoe leather , and enthusiasm that carry successful campaigns across the finish line.

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