LAKEVILLE, Minn. (KMSP) - Democrats are sending in the heavy hitters in their attempt to capture the 2nd Congressional District for the first time in 15 years. Former Presidential candidate Martin O'Malley was in Lakeville to campaign for DFL candidate Angie Craig.
“I wanted to come campaign with Angie Craig because she’s running one of the most exciting campaigns in the country, in one of those congressional districts where the people’s vote actually matters,” said O”Malley.
Republican Rep. John Kline has held the seat for almost 14 years, but he's retiring, so the seat is open. Democrats are confident about their chances to pick up the seat. Craig is touting her 22 years in the private sector, including her years as an executive at St. Jude Medical.
“It's a typical swing district. And voters seem to think a lot more about the person and his or her policy positions than the letter after the name on the ballot,” said Craig.
Craig and O’Malley toured Performance Office Papers in Lakeville, along with company founder Russ DeFauw. He cited Craig’s business-savvy as a reason he supports her.
“She’s my kind of Democrat,” DeFauw said. "One that understands that Democrats love jobs, but it’s business that creates those jobs, and I've been with her from day one."
Craig's opponent is former talk show host Jason Lewis, who won 49% of the vote in the Republican Primary. His campaign said he was unavailable for an interview Friday, but the campaign did issue a press release this week slamming Craig for how she’s received her campaign cash.
"The Lewis campaign provides a stark contrast to Angie Craig's. Rather than representing Big Business, Big Labor, and Big Government, small donors are supporting Lewis in record numbers."
There have been no independent polls in the race released so far, but both the Cook Political Report and the Rothenberg and Gonzales Political Report now rate the race as lean or tilt Democratic.