Nolan, Mills rematch appears likely in MN-8

Nolanzilla vs. Mills Kong

Nolanzilla vs. Mills Kong

Stewart Mills is planning another campaign for Congress, laying groundwork for a rematch against U.S. Rep. Rick Nolan (D-MN8) according to a Michael Brodkorb post at the Star Tribune. Nolan defeated Mills in the 2014 midterm cycle by about 4,000 votes or 1.5 percent.

This isn’t terribly shocking, as Mills seemed to be hinting a run months ago. Further, no other Republicans had emerged as candidates in what has increasingly been seen as a swing district.

That “swing” status hinges on the fact that in 2010 — a midterm Republican wave — GOPer Chip Cravaack beat the longtime DFL incumbent Jim Oberstar. And while the elections have stayed close, Nolan has demonstrated that the DFL continues to enjoy structural advantages here, particularly in the party’s ability to hold the Iron Range and run up votes in the liberal city of Duluth.

Nevertheless, 2016 is shaping up as a strange election cycle. The too-early presidential race is a bubbling casserole of hyperbole and vacuous soundbites. So it’s not worth predicting much until we see what lunacy is at the top of the ballot. Send word out to the precinct captains. It’s a rematch.

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