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Deadlocked Minneapolis DFLers go home with no mayoral endorsement

Supporters of the two leading candidates — Mark Andrew and Betsy Hodges — went their separate ways, leaving a wide open race.

Supporters of mayoral candidates Mark Andrew and Betsy Hodges (pictured) in the Minneapolis Convention Center during Saturday's DFL convention.
MinnPost photo by Terry Gydesen

In the end, DFL delegates to the Minneapolis city convention decided to go home Saturday without a mayoral endorsement, but they couldn’t even agree on that decision as a group.

The last two candidates remaining in the race for party endorsement, Mark Andrew and Betsy Hodges, went their separate ways after the third ballot.

The Hodges delegates gathered on the sidewalk adjacent to the Convention Center to make a decision while the Andrew delegates occupied the convention floor.  Both groups decided to go home after a 12-hour endorsement battle.

On the third ballot, Andrew led with 576 votes, or 49 percent, to Hodges 474 votes, or 47 percent, with 732 votes, or 60 percent, needed for endorsement.

And then the Hodges delegates disappeared into the night while the Andrew delegates remained and suggested that the fifth ballot serve as a test of a quorum.

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At the time, there appeared to be few delegates in the hall who were not Andrew supporters.

Candidate Gary Schiff had dropped out of the endorsement race after the second ballot but assured supporters that he will still be a candidate for mayor, should the convention fail to endorse a candidate.

The fifth ballot was cast, but before it could be counted, Andrew addressed those in the convention hall to thank them for their support and suggested that everyone go home.

The results of the fifith ballot will be released by the Minneapolis DFL only if the total number of ballots cast is at least 729, which would be a quorum.

Several seasoned observers said they were doubtful the delegate count would reach that level.

 This leaves the entire field of DFL mayoral candidates in the race.

Candidates Jackie Cherryhomes, Don Samuels and Jim Thomas were dropped from the endorsement race after each failed to win 10 percent of the vote on the first ballot.