Oberstar awaits nameless opponent in 2008

U.S. Rep Jim Oberstar (D-MN8) is the longest serving member of Congress from Minnesota. He’s a socially conservative, economically liberal DFLer in a socially conservative, economically liberal district that is the size of a New England state and where campaign news is still most widely spread by word of mouth. He’s an Iron Ranger in a district traditionally influenced by the Iron Range. And he chairs the committee that determines who gets highway funding, which is one of the biggest known vote-winning issues known to modern politics. So every two years we have an election so that both parties can briefly pretend as though the outcome isn’t assured.

The Republicans have tried many different approaches to their Quixotic dilemma in MN8 in recent years. They’ve tried running a cowboy. (Literally, he was a cowboy). They’ve tried running an earnest small town attorney. They’ve tried running former U.S. Senators. The outcome is Oberstar winning by somewhere between 32-42 percentage points. Rod Grams (the former U.S. Senator who once carried the district in his 1994 Senate campaign) actually only did one percentage point better in 2006 than Mark Groettum, the relatively unknown small town attorney, did in 2004.

So we’re waiting to find out who the Republicans run in 2008 against Oberstar. I know that it’s not Grams or Groettum (or, for that matter, “Cowboy Bob” Lemen, the 2000 and 2002 nominee). MNPublius has an amusing post about the Republican press release announcing their newest nameless candidate. Again, he or she is literally nameless. They didn’t include the person’s name in the press release.

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