If early spending is any indication, the battle for the Minnesota House will be fought in the ’burbs

MinnPost photo by Corey Anderson
Technically, all 134 seats are on the ballot in November, but the partisan leans of many districts make the election result almost a foregone conclusion.

Here’s the math facing the DFL in its quest to retake control of the Minnesota House: gain 11 seats currently controlled by the GOP while holding on to all the seats currently held by Democrats. Republicans, with a twenty-seat margin, are on defense, but could mitigate the loss of some seats by flipping other blue seats to red.

Technically, all 134 seats are on the ballot in November, but the partisan leans of many districts make the election result almost a foregone conclusion. So where do Democrats and their allies hope to make their gains? And where are Republicans firing back?

Data released last week by the Minnesota Campaign Finance and Public Disclosure Board on spending by outside political groups — think big hitters like the Minnesota Jobs Coalition — and party-affiliated political spending committees gives a glimpse of where the parties are concentrating their efforts.

If these early reports are any indication, the contest for control of the Minnesota House in 2018 is looking like the battle of the ’burbs.

Spending rings the metro

The charts below visualize the money spent by outside groups and parties on House races so far. (Since each district is worth the same to parties in terms of controlling the House, each district is represented by a square of the same size. The squares are arranged to roughly correspond to the districts’ actual geographical locations.) For clarity, MinnPost has combined expenditures that benefit one party, either by supporting the party’s candidate or attacking her opponent, into a party total.

Those dark rings around the edges of the Metro side of the charts? That’s both parties targeting the suburbs, spending in races from Woodbury to Wayzata and Blaine to Apple Valley.

Here’s spending by outside expenditure groups to benefit Republicans:

Outside IEs for GOP

Greater MinnesotaMetro
2A House District 2A


No spending data reported

1A House District 1A


No spending data reported

1B House District 1B


No spending data reported

2B House District 2B


No spending data reported

6A House District 6A


No spending data reported

6B House District 6B
Virginia

No spending data reported

Candidates:
  • Dave Lislegard (DFL)
  • Skeeter Tomczak (R)
3B House District 3B


No spending data reported

3A House District 3A
International Falls

Total spending: $3,906.25

Candidates:
  • Rob Ecklund (DFL) (Incumbent)
  • Randy Goutermont (R)
4A House District 4A


No spending data reported

4B House District 4B
Dilworth

No spending data reported

Candidates:
  • Paul Marquart (DFL) (Incumbent)
  • Jason Peterson (R)
5A House District 5A
Pennington

Total spending: $19,364.59

Candidates:
  • John Persell (DFL)
  • Matt Bliss (R) (Incumbent)
5B House District 5B
Cohasset

Total spending: $29,747.77

Candidates:
  • Pat Medure (DFL)
  • Sandy Layman (R) (Incumbent)
7B House District 7B


No spending data reported

7A House District 7A


No spending data reported

8A House District 8A


No spending data reported

8B House District 8B


No spending data reported

10A House District 10A


No spending data reported

10B House District 10B


No spending data reported

11A House District 11A
Esko

Total spending: $6,667.29

Candidates:
  • Mike Sundin (DFL) (Incumbent)
  • Jeff A. Dotseth (R)
30A House District 30A


No spending data reported

30B House District 30B


No spending data reported

35A House District 35A


No spending data reported

35B House District 35B


No spending data reported

31B House District 31B
East Bethel

Total spending: $589.11

Candidates:
  • Sue Larson (DFL)
  • Calvin (Cal) K. Bahr (R) (Incumbent)
32B House District 32B


No spending data reported

12A House District 12A


No spending data reported

9A House District 9A


No spending data reported

9B House District 9B


No spending data reported

15B House District 15B


No spending data reported

11B House District 11B


No spending data reported

34A House District 34A
Rogers

Total spending: $17,392.42

Candidates:
  • Dan Solon (DFL)
  • Kristin Robbins (R)
36A House District 36A
Champlin

Total spending: $21,691.43

Candidates:
  • Zack Stephenson (DFL)
  • Bill Maresh (R)
36B House District 36B


No spending data reported

37A House District 37A
Spring Lake Park

Total spending: $95,341.06

Candidates:
  • Erin Koegel (DFL) (Incumbent)
  • Anthony Wilder (R)
37B House District 37B
Blaine

No spending data reported

Candidates:
  • Amir Joseph Malik (DFL)
  • Nolan West (R) (Incumbent)
38A House District 38A


No spending data reported

38B House District 38B
Dellwood

Total spending: $70,549.25

Candidates:
  • Ami Wazlawik (DFL)
  • Patti Anderson (R)
39A House District 39A


No spending data reported

12B House District 12B


No spending data reported

13A House District 13A
Rockville

Total spending: $12,817.50

Candidates:
  • Jim Read (DFL)
  • Lisa Demuth (R)
13B House District 13B


No spending data reported

15A House District 15A


No spending data reported

32A House District 32A


No spending data reported

34B House District 34B


Total spending: $2,500.00

40A House District 40A


No spending data reported

40B House District 40B


No spending data reported

41A House District 41A


No spending data reported

41B House District 41B


No spending data reported

42A House District 42A
Shoreview

Total spending: $26,091.50

Candidates:
  • Kelly Moller (DFL)
  • Randy Jessup (R) (Incumbent)
42B House District 42B
Roseville

Total spending: $1,312.08

Candidates:
  • Jamie Becker-Finn (DFL) (Incumbent)
  • Yele-Mis Yang (R)
43A House District 43A


No spending data reported

17A House District 17A
Prinsburg

Total spending: $343.07

Candidates:
  • Lyle Koenen (DFL)
  • Tim Miller (R) (Incumbent)
17B House District 17B


No spending data reported

14A House District 14A


No spending data reported

14B House District 14B
St. Cloud

Total spending: $9,438.77

Candidates:
  • Dan Wolgamott (DFL)
  • Jim Knoblach (R) (Incumbent)
31A House District 31A


No spending data reported

44A House District 44A
Plymouth

Total spending: $43,658.05

Candidates:
  • Ginny Klevorn (DFL)
  • Sarah Anderson (R) (Incumbent)
45A House District 45A


No spending data reported

45B House District 45B


No spending data reported

59A House District 59A


No spending data reported

60A House District 60A


No spending data reported

66A House District 66A


No spending data reported

66B House District 66B


No spending data reported

67A House District 67A


No spending data reported

43B House District 43B


No spending data reported

39B House District 39B
Stillwater

No spending data reported

Candidates:
  • Shelly Christensen (DFL)
  • Kathy Lohmer (R) (Incumbent)
16A House District 16A


No spending data reported

18A House District 18A


No spending data reported

29A House District 29A


No spending data reported

29B House District 29B


No spending data reported

44B House District 44B


No spending data reported

46A House District 46A


No spending data reported

59B House District 59B


No spending data reported

60B House District 60B


No spending data reported

64A House District 64A


No spending data reported

65A House District 65A


No spending data reported

67B House District 67B


No spending data reported

53A House District 53A


No spending data reported

16B House District 16B


No spending data reported

18B House District 18B


No spending data reported

47A House District 47A


No spending data reported

33A House District 33A


No spending data reported

33B House District 33B
Chanhassen

Total spending: $2,388.07

Candidates:
  • Kelly Morrison (DFL)
  • Cindy Pugh (R) (Incumbent)
46B House District 46B


No spending data reported

61A House District 61A


No spending data reported

62A House District 62A


No spending data reported

63A House District 63A


No spending data reported

65B House District 65B


No spending data reported

53B House District 53B
Woodbury

Total spending: $32,811.50

Candidates:
  • Steve Sandell (DFL)
  • Kelly Fenton (R) (Incumbent)
54B House District 54B
Cottage Grove

Total spending: $42,410.35

Candidates:
  • Tina Folch (DFL)
  • Tony Jurgens (R) (Incumbent)
19A House District 19A
North Mankato

Total spending: $18,337.66

Candidates:
  • Jeff Brand (DFL)
  • Kim Spears (R)
20A House District 20A


No spending data reported

20B House District 20B
Northfield

Total spending: $26,522.85

Candidates:
  • Todd Lippert (DFL)
  • Josh Gare (R)
58B House District 58B


No spending data reported

21A House District 21A
Red Wing

Total spending: $2,500.00

Candidates:
  • Lori Ann Clark (DFL)
  • Barb Haley (R) (Incumbent)
21B House District 21B


No spending data reported

48A House District 48A
Minnetonka

Total spending: $15,772.18

Candidates:
  • Laurie Pryor (DFL) (Incumbent)
  • Ellen Cousins (R)
49A House District 49A
Edina

Total spending: $2,500.00

Candidates:
  • Heather Edelson (DFL)
  • Dario Anselmo (R) (Incumbent)
61B House District 61B


No spending data reported

62B House District 62B


No spending data reported

63B House District 63B


No spending data reported

64B House District 64B


No spending data reported

52A House District 52A


No spending data reported

54A House District 54A
St. Paul Park

Total spending: $56,959.01

Candidates:
  • Anne Claflin (DFL)
  • Keith Franke (R) (Incumbent)
22B House District 22B


No spending data reported

19B House District 19B


No spending data reported

23B House District 23B


No spending data reported

25B House District 25B


No spending data reported

24B House District 24B


No spending data reported

25A House District 25A


No spending data reported

28A House District 28A


No spending data reported

47B House District 47B
Chaska

Total spending: $28,041.42

Candidates:
  • Donzel Leggett (DFL)
  • Greg Boe (R)
48B House District 48B
Eden Prairie

Total spending: $47,640.00

Candidates:
  • Carlie Kotyza-Witthuhn (DFL)
  • Jenifer W. Loon (R) (Incumbent)
49B House District 49B


No spending data reported

50A House District 50A


No spending data reported

50B House District 50B


No spending data reported

51A House District 51A


No spending data reported

51B House District 51B


No spending data reported

52B House District 52B
Inver Grove Heights

Total spending: $54,886.67

Candidates:
  • Ruth Richardson (DFL)
  • Regina Barr (R) (Incumbent)
22A House District 22A


No spending data reported

23A House District 23A


No spending data reported

24A House District 24A


No spending data reported

26B House District 26B


No spending data reported

26A House District 26A


No spending data reported

27A House District 27A


No spending data reported

27B House District 27B


No spending data reported

28B House District 28B


No spending data reported

55A House District 55A
Shakopee

Total spending: $62,367.30

Candidates:
  • Brad Tabke (DFL)
  • Erik Mortensen (R)
55B House District 55B


No spending data reported

56A House District 56A
Savage

Total spending: $45,440.00

Candidates:
  • Hunter Cantrell (DFL)
  • Drew Christensen (R) (Incumbent)
56B House District 56B
Lakeville

Total spending: $62,390.07

Candidates:
  • Alice Mann (DFL)
  • Roz Peterson (R) (Incumbent)
58A House District 58A


No spending data reported

57A House District 57A
Apple Valley

Total spending: $53,595.47

Candidates:
  • Robert Bierman (DFL)
  • Matt Lundin (R)
57B House District 57B
Rosemount

Total spending: $29,695.00

Candidates:
  • John Huot (DFL)
  • Anna Wills (R) (Incumbent)

Legend

  •   Up to $95,341
  •   Up to $76,272
  •   Up to $57,204
  •   Up to $38,136
  •   Up to $19,068
  •   No spending data reported

Here’s the same data for groups spending to boost DFLers:

Outside IEs for DFL

Greater MinnesotaMetro
2A House District 2A


No spending data reported

1A House District 1A


No spending data reported

1B House District 1B


No spending data reported

2B House District 2B


No spending data reported

6A House District 6A


No spending data reported

6B House District 6B
Virginia

Total spending: $2,969.75

Candidates:
  • Dave Lislegard (DFL)
  • Skeeter Tomczak (R)
3B House District 3B


No spending data reported

3A House District 3A
International Falls

No spending data reported

Candidates:
  • Rob Ecklund (DFL) (Incumbent)
  • Randy Goutermont (R)
4A House District 4A


No spending data reported

4B House District 4B
Dilworth

Total spending: $8,338.00

Candidates:
  • Paul Marquart (DFL) (Incumbent)
  • Jason Peterson (R)
5A House District 5A
Pennington

No spending data reported

Candidates:
  • John Persell (DFL)
  • Matt Bliss (R) (Incumbent)
5B House District 5B
Cohasset

No spending data reported

Candidates:
  • Pat Medure (DFL)
  • Sandy Layman (R) (Incumbent)
7B House District 7B


No spending data reported

7A House District 7A


No spending data reported

8A House District 8A


No spending data reported

8B House District 8B


No spending data reported

10A House District 10A


No spending data reported

10B House District 10B


No spending data reported

11A House District 11A
Esko

No spending data reported

Candidates:
  • Mike Sundin (DFL) (Incumbent)
  • Jeff A. Dotseth (R)
30A House District 30A


No spending data reported

30B House District 30B


No spending data reported

35A House District 35A


No spending data reported

35B House District 35B


No spending data reported

31B House District 31B
East Bethel

No spending data reported

Candidates:
  • Sue Larson (DFL)
  • Calvin (Cal) K. Bahr (R) (Incumbent)
32B House District 32B


No spending data reported

12A House District 12A


No spending data reported

9A House District 9A


No spending data reported

9B House District 9B


No spending data reported

15B House District 15B


No spending data reported

11B House District 11B


No spending data reported

34A House District 34A
Rogers

No spending data reported

Candidates:
  • Dan Solon (DFL)
  • Kristin Robbins (R)
36A House District 36A
Champlin

Total spending: $677.32

Candidates:
  • Zack Stephenson (DFL)
  • Bill Maresh (R)
36B House District 36B


No spending data reported

37A House District 37A
Spring Lake Park

No spending data reported

Candidates:
  • Erin Koegel (DFL) (Incumbent)
  • Anthony Wilder (R)
37B House District 37B
Blaine

No spending data reported

Candidates:
  • Amir Joseph Malik (DFL)
  • Nolan West (R) (Incumbent)
38A House District 38A


No spending data reported

38B House District 38B
Dellwood

No spending data reported

Candidates:
  • Ami Wazlawik (DFL)
  • Patti Anderson (R)
39A House District 39A


No spending data reported

12B House District 12B


No spending data reported

13A House District 13A
Rockville

No spending data reported

Candidates:
  • Jim Read (DFL)
  • Lisa Demuth (R)
13B House District 13B


No spending data reported

15A House District 15A


No spending data reported

32A House District 32A


No spending data reported

34B House District 34B


No spending data reported

40A House District 40A


No spending data reported

40B House District 40B


No spending data reported

41A House District 41A


No spending data reported

41B House District 41B


No spending data reported

42A House District 42A
Shoreview

Total spending: $429.07

Candidates:
  • Kelly Moller (DFL)
  • Randy Jessup (R) (Incumbent)
42B House District 42B
Roseville

No spending data reported

Candidates:
  • Jamie Becker-Finn (DFL) (Incumbent)
  • Yele-Mis Yang (R)
43A House District 43A


No spending data reported

17A House District 17A
Prinsburg

No spending data reported

Candidates:
  • Lyle Koenen (DFL)
  • Tim Miller (R) (Incumbent)
17B House District 17B


No spending data reported

14A House District 14A


No spending data reported

14B House District 14B
St. Cloud

No spending data reported

Candidates:
  • Dan Wolgamott (DFL)
  • Jim Knoblach (R) (Incumbent)
31A House District 31A


No spending data reported

44A House District 44A
Plymouth

No spending data reported

Candidates:
  • Ginny Klevorn (DFL)
  • Sarah Anderson (R) (Incumbent)
45A House District 45A


No spending data reported

45B House District 45B


No spending data reported

59A House District 59A


No spending data reported

60A House District 60A


No spending data reported

66A House District 66A


No spending data reported

66B House District 66B


No spending data reported

67A House District 67A


No spending data reported

43B House District 43B


No spending data reported

39B House District 39B
Stillwater

Total spending: $1,000.01

Candidates:
  • Shelly Christensen (DFL)
  • Kathy Lohmer (R) (Incumbent)
16A House District 16A


No spending data reported

18A House District 18A


No spending data reported

29A House District 29A


No spending data reported

29B House District 29B


No spending data reported

44B House District 44B


No spending data reported

46A House District 46A


No spending data reported

59B House District 59B


No spending data reported

60B House District 60B


No spending data reported

64A House District 64A


No spending data reported

65A House District 65A


No spending data reported

67B House District 67B


No spending data reported

53A House District 53A


No spending data reported

16B House District 16B


No spending data reported

18B House District 18B


No spending data reported

47A House District 47A


No spending data reported

33A House District 33A


No spending data reported

33B House District 33B
Chanhassen

No spending data reported

Candidates:
  • Kelly Morrison (DFL)
  • Cindy Pugh (R) (Incumbent)
46B House District 46B


No spending data reported

61A House District 61A


No spending data reported

62A House District 62A


No spending data reported

63A House District 63A


No spending data reported

65B House District 65B


No spending data reported

53B House District 53B
Woodbury

No spending data reported

Candidates:
  • Steve Sandell (DFL)
  • Kelly Fenton (R) (Incumbent)
54B House District 54B
Cottage Grove

No spending data reported

Candidates:
  • Tina Folch (DFL)
  • Tony Jurgens (R) (Incumbent)
19A House District 19A
North Mankato

No spending data reported

Candidates:
  • Jeff Brand (DFL)
  • Kim Spears (R)
20A House District 20A


No spending data reported

20B House District 20B
Northfield

No spending data reported

Candidates:
  • Todd Lippert (DFL)
  • Josh Gare (R)
58B House District 58B


No spending data reported

21A House District 21A
Red Wing

No spending data reported

Candidates:
  • Lori Ann Clark (DFL)
  • Barb Haley (R) (Incumbent)
21B House District 21B


No spending data reported

48A House District 48A
Minnetonka

No spending data reported

Candidates:
  • Laurie Pryor (DFL) (Incumbent)
  • Ellen Cousins (R)
49A House District 49A
Edina

Total spending: $710.90

Candidates:
  • Heather Edelson (DFL)
  • Dario Anselmo (R) (Incumbent)
61B House District 61B


No spending data reported

62B House District 62B


No spending data reported

63B House District 63B


No spending data reported

64B House District 64B


No spending data reported

52A House District 52A


No spending data reported

54A House District 54A
St. Paul Park

Total spending: $1,000.01

Candidates:
  • Anne Claflin (DFL)
  • Keith Franke (R) (Incumbent)
22B House District 22B


No spending data reported

19B House District 19B


No spending data reported

23B House District 23B


No spending data reported

25B House District 25B


No spending data reported

24B House District 24B


No spending data reported

25A House District 25A


No spending data reported

28A House District 28A


No spending data reported

47B House District 47B
Chaska

No spending data reported

Candidates:
  • Donzel Leggett (DFL)
  • Greg Boe (R)
48B House District 48B
Eden Prairie

No spending data reported

Candidates:
  • Carlie Kotyza-Witthuhn (DFL)
  • Jenifer W. Loon (R) (Incumbent)
49B House District 49B


No spending data reported

50A House District 50A


No spending data reported

50B House District 50B


No spending data reported

51A House District 51A


No spending data reported

51B House District 51B


No spending data reported

52B House District 52B
Inver Grove Heights

Total spending: $409.39

Candidates:
  • Ruth Richardson (DFL)
  • Regina Barr (R) (Incumbent)
22A House District 22A


No spending data reported

23A House District 23A


No spending data reported

24A House District 24A


No spending data reported

26B House District 26B


No spending data reported

26A House District 26A


No spending data reported

27A House District 27A


No spending data reported

27B House District 27B


No spending data reported

28B House District 28B


No spending data reported

55A House District 55A
Shakopee

No spending data reported

Candidates:
  • Brad Tabke (DFL)
  • Erik Mortensen (R)
55B House District 55B


No spending data reported

56A House District 56A
Savage

No spending data reported

Candidates:
  • Hunter Cantrell (DFL)
  • Drew Christensen (R) (Incumbent)
56B House District 56B
Lakeville

No spending data reported

Candidates:
  • Alice Mann (DFL)
  • Roz Peterson (R) (Incumbent)
58A House District 58A


No spending data reported

57A House District 57A
Apple Valley

No spending data reported

Candidates:
  • Robert Bierman (DFL)
  • Matt Lundin (R)
57B House District 57B
Rosemount

No spending data reported

Candidates:
  • John Huot (DFL)
  • Anna Wills (R) (Incumbent)

Legend

  •   Up to $8,338
  •   Up to $6,670
  •   Up to $5,002
  •   Up to $3,335
  •   Up to $1,667
  •   No spending data reported

Something to note: while the GOP mostly relies on independent outside groups for spending in House races, the DFL tends to make use of party-affiliated committees. So to get the full picture, spending by official DFL party groups (the DFL House Caucus, the DFL State Central Committee) needs to be taken into account:

Party IEs for DFL

Greater MinnesotaMetro
2A House District 2A


No spending data reported

1A House District 1A


No spending data reported

1B House District 1B


No spending data reported

2B House District 2B


No spending data reported

6A House District 6A


No spending data reported

6B House District 6B
Virginia

No spending data reported

Candidates:
  • Dave Lislegard (DFL)
  • Skeeter Tomczak (R)
3B House District 3B


No spending data reported

3A House District 3A
International Falls

No spending data reported

Candidates:
  • Rob Ecklund (DFL) (Incumbent)
  • Randy Goutermont (R)
4A House District 4A


No spending data reported

4B House District 4B
Dilworth

No spending data reported

Candidates:
  • Paul Marquart (DFL) (Incumbent)
  • Jason Peterson (R)
5A House District 5A
Pennington

No spending data reported

Candidates:
  • John Persell (DFL)
  • Matt Bliss (R) (Incumbent)
5B House District 5B
Cohasset

Total spending: $22,005.64

Candidates:
  • Pat Medure (DFL)
  • Sandy Layman (R) (Incumbent)
7B House District 7B


No spending data reported

7A House District 7A


No spending data reported

8A House District 8A


No spending data reported

8B House District 8B


No spending data reported

10A House District 10A


No spending data reported

10B House District 10B


No spending data reported

11A House District 11A
Esko

No spending data reported

Candidates:
  • Mike Sundin (DFL) (Incumbent)
  • Jeff A. Dotseth (R)
30A House District 30A


No spending data reported

30B House District 30B


No spending data reported

35A House District 35A


No spending data reported

35B House District 35B


No spending data reported

31B House District 31B
East Bethel

No spending data reported

Candidates:
  • Sue Larson (DFL)
  • Calvin (Cal) K. Bahr (R) (Incumbent)
32B House District 32B


No spending data reported

12A House District 12A


No spending data reported

9A House District 9A


No spending data reported

9B House District 9B


No spending data reported

15B House District 15B


No spending data reported

11B House District 11B


No spending data reported

34A House District 34A
Rogers

No spending data reported

Candidates:
  • Dan Solon (DFL)
  • Kristin Robbins (R)
36A House District 36A
Champlin

No spending data reported

Candidates:
  • Zack Stephenson (DFL)
  • Bill Maresh (R)
36B House District 36B


No spending data reported

37A House District 37A
Spring Lake Park

No spending data reported

Candidates:
  • Erin Koegel (DFL) (Incumbent)
  • Anthony Wilder (R)
37B House District 37B
Blaine

Total spending: $11,241.22

Candidates:
  • Amir Joseph Malik (DFL)
  • Nolan West (R) (Incumbent)
38A House District 38A


No spending data reported

38B House District 38B
Dellwood

No spending data reported

Candidates:
  • Ami Wazlawik (DFL)
  • Patti Anderson (R)
39A House District 39A


No spending data reported

12B House District 12B


No spending data reported

13A House District 13A
Rockville

No spending data reported

Candidates:
  • Jim Read (DFL)
  • Lisa Demuth (R)
13B House District 13B


No spending data reported

15A House District 15A


No spending data reported

32A House District 32A


No spending data reported

34B House District 34B


Total spending: $16,855.90

40A House District 40A


No spending data reported

40B House District 40B


No spending data reported

41A House District 41A


No spending data reported

41B House District 41B


No spending data reported

42A House District 42A
Shoreview

Total spending: $15,435.91

Candidates:
  • Kelly Moller (DFL)
  • Randy Jessup (R) (Incumbent)
42B House District 42B
Roseville

No spending data reported

Candidates:
  • Jamie Becker-Finn (DFL) (Incumbent)
  • Yele-Mis Yang (R)
43A House District 43A


No spending data reported

17A House District 17A
Prinsburg

No spending data reported

Candidates:
  • Lyle Koenen (DFL)
  • Tim Miller (R) (Incumbent)
17B House District 17B


No spending data reported

14A House District 14A


No spending data reported

14B House District 14B
St. Cloud

Total spending: $37,726.25

Candidates:
  • Dan Wolgamott (DFL)
  • Jim Knoblach (R) (Incumbent)
31A House District 31A


No spending data reported

44A House District 44A
Plymouth

Total spending: $16,884.46

Candidates:
  • Ginny Klevorn (DFL)
  • Sarah Anderson (R) (Incumbent)
45A House District 45A


No spending data reported

45B House District 45B


No spending data reported

59A House District 59A


No spending data reported

60A House District 60A


No spending data reported

66A House District 66A


No spending data reported

66B House District 66B


No spending data reported

67A House District 67A


No spending data reported

43B House District 43B


No spending data reported

39B House District 39B
Stillwater

Total spending: $11,767.65

Candidates:
  • Shelly Christensen (DFL)
  • Kathy Lohmer (R) (Incumbent)
16A House District 16A


No spending data reported

18A House District 18A


No spending data reported

29A House District 29A


No spending data reported

29B House District 29B


No spending data reported

44B House District 44B


No spending data reported

46A House District 46A


No spending data reported

59B House District 59B


No spending data reported

60B House District 60B


No spending data reported

64A House District 64A


No spending data reported

65A House District 65A


No spending data reported

67B House District 67B


No spending data reported

53A House District 53A


No spending data reported

16B House District 16B


No spending data reported

18B House District 18B


No spending data reported

47A House District 47A


No spending data reported

33A House District 33A


No spending data reported

33B House District 33B
Chanhassen

No spending data reported

Candidates:
  • Kelly Morrison (DFL)
  • Cindy Pugh (R) (Incumbent)
46B House District 46B


No spending data reported

61A House District 61A


No spending data reported

62A House District 62A


No spending data reported

63A House District 63A


No spending data reported

65B House District 65B


No spending data reported

53B House District 53B
Woodbury

Total spending: $16,272.85

Candidates:
  • Steve Sandell (DFL)
  • Kelly Fenton (R) (Incumbent)
54B House District 54B
Cottage Grove

Total spending: $16,271.07

Candidates:
  • Tina Folch (DFL)
  • Tony Jurgens (R) (Incumbent)
19A House District 19A
North Mankato

No spending data reported

Candidates:
  • Jeff Brand (DFL)
  • Kim Spears (R)
20A House District 20A


No spending data reported

20B House District 20B
Northfield

No spending data reported

Candidates:
  • Todd Lippert (DFL)
  • Josh Gare (R)
58B House District 58B


No spending data reported

21A House District 21A
Red Wing

No spending data reported

Candidates:
  • Lori Ann Clark (DFL)
  • Barb Haley (R) (Incumbent)
21B House District 21B


No spending data reported

48A House District 48A
Minnetonka

No spending data reported

Candidates:
  • Laurie Pryor (DFL) (Incumbent)
  • Ellen Cousins (R)
49A House District 49A
Edina

Total spending: $16,592.83

Candidates:
  • Heather Edelson (DFL)
  • Dario Anselmo (R) (Incumbent)
61B House District 61B


No spending data reported

62B House District 62B


No spending data reported

63B House District 63B


No spending data reported

64B House District 64B


No spending data reported

52A House District 52A


No spending data reported

54A House District 54A
St. Paul Park

Total spending: $16,279.42

Candidates:
  • Anne Claflin (DFL)
  • Keith Franke (R) (Incumbent)
22B House District 22B


No spending data reported

19B House District 19B


No spending data reported

23B House District 23B


No spending data reported

25B House District 25B


No spending data reported

24B House District 24B


No spending data reported

25A House District 25A


No spending data reported

28A House District 28A


No spending data reported

47B House District 47B
Chaska

No spending data reported

Candidates:
  • Donzel Leggett (DFL)
  • Greg Boe (R)
48B House District 48B
Eden Prairie

Total spending: $12,802.76

Candidates:
  • Carlie Kotyza-Witthuhn (DFL)
  • Jenifer W. Loon (R) (Incumbent)
49B House District 49B


No spending data reported

50A House District 50A


No spending data reported

50B House District 50B


No spending data reported

51A House District 51A


No spending data reported

51B House District 51B


No spending data reported

52B House District 52B
Inver Grove Heights

Total spending: $16,224.20

Candidates:
  • Ruth Richardson (DFL)
  • Regina Barr (R) (Incumbent)
22A House District 22A


No spending data reported

23A House District 23A


No spending data reported

24A House District 24A


No spending data reported

26B House District 26B


No spending data reported

26A House District 26A


No spending data reported

27A House District 27A


No spending data reported

27B House District 27B


No spending data reported

28B House District 28B


No spending data reported

55A House District 55A
Shakopee

No spending data reported

Candidates:
  • Brad Tabke (DFL)
  • Erik Mortensen (R)
55B House District 55B


No spending data reported

56A House District 56A
Savage

No spending data reported

Candidates:
  • Hunter Cantrell (DFL)
  • Drew Christensen (R) (Incumbent)
56B House District 56B
Lakeville

Total spending: $16,272.85

Candidates:
  • Alice Mann (DFL)
  • Roz Peterson (R) (Incumbent)
58A House District 58A


No spending data reported

57A House District 57A
Apple Valley

Total spending: $4,957.68

Candidates:
  • Robert Bierman (DFL)
  • Matt Lundin (R)
57B House District 57B
Rosemount

Total spending: $16,277.86

Candidates:
  • John Huot (DFL)
  • Anna Wills (R) (Incumbent)

Legend

  •   Up to $37,726
  •   Up to $30,181
  •   Up to $22,635
  •   Up to $15,090
  •   Up to $7,545
  •   No spending data reported

A couple more caveats: Independent expenditure groups aren’t allowed to coordinate with candidate campaigns to make these campaign expenditures, but they’re generally powered by political insiders who know a thing or two about the candidates they’d like to see win. Handwritten reports (yes, it’s 2018 and some groups still file by hand) may not have all been entered in the data yet, per the CFB. Spending on candidates who lost primaries is not included.

Campaigning in a targeted district

There’s a reason so much spending is happening in the suburbs, said Maureen Shaver, a consultant and former advisor to Gov. Tim Pawlenty.

Twelve suburban House seats held by Republicans — from Woodbury out to western suburbs like Excelsior —  went for Hillary Clinton in the 2016 election, creating a map where Democrats, seeking to gain control, are trying to play offense, while Republicans play defense, Shaver said. Other seats that went DFL in 2016, such as the Apple Valley seat currently held by Erin Maye Quade, who is not running for it this November, could be pickups for Republicans.

“If you look at where there is opportunity, suburban women are voters who haven’t necessarily made up their minds. They’re not as partisan, and they vote,” she said.

The House district seeing the most outside spending so far is 37A, according to CFB filings. There, Erin Koegel, DFL-Spring Lake Park, is defending the northern suburban seat she won by less than 3 percentage points in 2016 in a rematch against Republican Anthony Wilder.

The Coalition of Minnesota Businesses has spent more than $75,000 against Koegel and for Wilder, mostly on a cable ad buy. The Housing First Fund, the Minnesota Jobs Coalition and Pro Jobs Majority have spent $15,000, $4,000 and $1,000, respectively, on communications in favor of Wilder.

It’s not just the northern suburbs that are seeing big outside expenditures.

That longtime Republican Rep. Matt Dean isn’t running again this year for White Bear Lake-area District 38B leaves an open seat. This year, Republican Patti Anderson and DFLer Ami Wazlawik, who lost to Dean by 14 percentage points in a 2016 bid for the seat, are running.

More than $86,000 has been spent on mailers and cable buys attacking Wazlawik by the Minnesota Jobs Coalition and the Coalition of Minnesota Businesses, per CFB records. The Coalition of Minnesota Businesses and the Pro Jobs Majority have spent $2,700 in favor of Anderson.

Wazlawik says she knows of four or five outside money-funded mailers attacking her that have arrived at district homes.

For her part, the candidate thinks all the outside money is bringing negativity to the race.

“I think people don’t like it and they want to be able to make their decisions based on conversations they have with people and what people want to do,” Wazlawik said.

While suburban districts — combined — have drawn the lion’s share of campaign cash, the single race seeing the most independent expenditures flowing from DFL state party arms is 14B, a St. Cloud district that’s in the minority of non-suburban races being targeted.

This St. Cloud-area district has seen nearly $38,000 spent so far to help Democrat Dan Wolgamott, but that could end abruptly. Wolgamott’s opponent, Republican incumbent Jim Knoblach, dropped out of the race last month following allegations that he sexually abused his daughter, reported by Minnesota Public Radio. Non-party groups had spent about $9,400 to help Knoblach.

The Senate special

The Minnesota Senate isn’t up for re-election until 2020, but there is one Senate race on the ballot. There’s a special election in SD13 to fill the vacancy created when Sen. Michelle Fischbach resigned to become lieutenant governor.

Republican Jeff Howe and DFLer Joe Perske are vying for that seat, which Fischbach held by a very comfortable margin of 37 percentage points in 2016.

The GOP’s Senate Victory Fund has spent $61,800 to influence this race. Also spending in that race: the Advance Minnesota Independent Expenditure Committee ($1,500 pro-Howe), Pro Jobs Majority ($49,000 to help Howe) and the DFL State Central Committee ($126,000 pro-Perske).

Groups making independent expenditures toward November are just getting started, Shaver said, speculating voters in competitive districts could see as many as 40 or 50 mailers before Election Day.

Comments (1)

  1. Submitted by Robert Moffitt on 10/02/2018 - 10:55 am.

    I was surprised to to hear about the level of outside spending in my district, 37A. Besides a few anti-Koegel fliers, I have not seen much evidence of the spending.

    IMHO the fliers being sent by MNGOP and HHF are pretty weak, rehashing old scare tactics on health care.

    I hesitate to predict any winners, but I just don’t see any big tailwinds for Wilder.

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