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New McFadden campaign manager, Carl Kuhl, has ties to Norm Coleman and St. Paul City Hall

Kuhl got his start in politics by pounding signs for the Randy Kelly for Mayor campaign. He was 23 and studying communications at Metro State.

The Mike McFadden for U.S. Senate Campaign quickly replaced campaign manager Brad Herold, who stepped down earlier this week, after he’d helped the candidate garner the GOP endorsement.

Carl Kuhl, a veteran operative, is the new campaign manager. Herold is said to be continuing as an advisor to the campaign.

Kuhl was first noticed in political circles in 2001, helping Randy Kelly run for mayor of St. Paul. Kuhl was 23, studying communications and public relations at Metro State. He was in charge of lawn signs. He worked in the city’s marketing department after Kelly won, then went to work for Sen. Norm Coleman as regional affairs and policy liaison.

Kuhl was hired back by Mayor Kelly in 2004 to be communications director. Kelly was a DFLer but lost his reelection bid in 2005, in part because he publicly supported President Bush.

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Kuhl worked as an aide for Coleman again, and in 2010 appeared as a spokesman for Republican Tom Emmer when he lost the gubernatorial election to Mark Dayton.

Recently Kuhl has been a principal in a public affairs firm, where he worked in support of same-sex marriage.

Now that McFadden has the GOP endorsement, he’s facing state Rep. Jim Abeler in the Aug. 12 primary. The winner will take on U.S. Sen. Al Franken in November.