Northern Minnesota’s legislative linchpins

One of the prevailing trends during the Trump Administration is the ease with which we ignore other politicians or, really, political topics of any substance. For instance, two years ago I was the campaign manager for a DFL incumbent in a critical rural swing race in the Minnesota House of Representatives. We lost. Two years… Read More →

One month left in Minnesota’s Fightin’ 8th

Just four weeks remain in the 2018 campaign. Unlike rehab, we’ll spend these next 28 days getting dirty. We should expect fireworks in Minnesota’s Eighth Congressional District. Here Democrat Joe Radinovich hopes to keep the seat held by his former boss, outgoing U.S. Rep. Rick Nolan, in a district that veered sharply toward Donald Trump… Read More →

Remembering George Perpich, special era of Range politics

On Sept. 26, former Iron Range State Sen. George Perpich died at age 85 in an Arden Hills, Minn., care center. He had suffered from Parkinson’s Disease for the past several years. Perpich was one of four brothers, sons of poor Croatian immigrants in Hibbing’s Carson Lake location. Rudy, Tony, Joe and George all became… Read More →

LIVE: First major debate in Minnesota’s 8th District

This morning the three candidates in Minnesota’s Eighth Congressional District face off in their first major debate. Democrat Joe Radinovich, Republican Pete Stauber and independent Ray “Skip” Sandman will talk issues. This brings welcome relief from a campaign marked by negative ads and low name identification. At 10 a.m., the Duluth Chamber of Commerce and… Read More →

New York Times tracks Minnesota’s 8th District

Brace yourself, Minnesota political junkies. You’re about to have your mind blown. The New York Times hired Siena College to conduct polls in competitive House races across America. One of them is Northern Minnesota’s 8th Congressional District. They’ll be uploading polling results from the district as they come in, updating the results each day. That… Read More →

Hibbing grad warns of economic crisis below ground

During the oil boom ten years ago I knew a number of guys who would pack a bag and drive from Northern Minnesota to western North Dakota to work weeks at a time in the Bakken oil fields. Classmates. Friends of friends. Parents from my kids’ school. During the Great Recession of 2008 this was… Read More →

Will Minnesota’s 8th District swing or rust shut?

With Labor Day behind us, a nine-week political sprint awaits the next Congressperson from Minnesota’s Eighth Congressional District. This North Central Minnesota seat promises to be among the nation’s most expensive and closely-watched swing races for control of Congress. Several factors will influence whether our next Member of Congress is Republican Pete Stauber, Democrat Joe… Read More →

Greater Minnesota Governor’s Forum cancelled

The Greater Minnesota Governor’s Forum scheduled for tomorrow night at the Reif Center in Grand Rapids has been cancelled. The campaigns of Republican nominee Jeff Johnson and Democratic-Farmer-Labor Party nominee Tim Walz both withdrew unexpectedly over the weekend. Organized by Northern Community Radio and Lakeland Public Television, the forum aimed to focus exclusively on Greater… Read More →

Post-primary analysis shows how Radinovich won MN-8

This week DFL voters nominated Joe Radinovich to face Republican Pete Stauber and independent Skip Sandman in the Nov. 6 general election. Though I covered the basics in my Tuesday night live blog, I’ve got a few more thoughts on the Aug. 14 primary election before we swing into general election mode (and perhaps take… Read More →

LIVE BLOG: Following #MN08 and more on primary night 2018

This live blog is by Aaron Brown of, an author, columnist, radio producer and college instructor from Northern Minnesota’s Iron Range. We’ll be following returns from the 2018 Minnesota Primary with special attention on the 8th Congressional District. Got tips? Contact Aaron here or leave a comment. Refresh often for the newest material. More news… Read More →