Minnesota Republicans are facing the possibility of losing control of the state legislature, and Trump's unpopularity isn't helping.
Trump’s unpopularity could deal a serious blow to Republicans in Minnesota, who are desperately holding on to control of the state legislature.
Democrats need to win 11 seats to hold on to the Minnesota House, which they last held in the 2013-14 session.
In recent polling of Minnesota voters, Trump is underwater. Fifty-five percent of those responding to the poll from NBC News/Marist disapproved of his presidency, with only 38 percent approving. In a poll from the Star Tribune/MPR News, Trump’s approval was 39 percent.
That poor showing echoes his numbers nationally, where he currently stands at 42.8 percent. He has never been over 50 percent approval.
The Twin Cities Pioneer Press notes that many of the seats Republicans need to keep control of the state are in suburban districts that favored Hillary Clinton in 2016.
Melissa Hortman, the Democratic Minority Leader in the House, told the paper, “We think we have a very good chance of taking it back.”
One such battle is playing out in House District 44A, where the incumbent Rep. Sarah Anderson is facing a serious challenge from Democrat Ginny Klevorn.
Klevorn has the backing of President Barack Obama, along with groups like Everytown for Gun Safety, the AFL-CIO, Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense, NOW and the SEIU.
By contrast, Anderson has been a stalwart supporter of the NRA’s extremist agenda, which is out of sync with Minnesota voters. She has attempted to distance herself from their record with legislation designed to give her gun-safety credentials but that had no real chance of passage.
The ploy was an attempt to sway the suburban voters who are likely to back a candidate like Klevorn.
Opposition to Trump and his agenda enabled by Republicans in state Houses like Minnesota’s are driving Democrats to the polls, and local politicians like Anderson could end up losing their seats in the aftermath.