Over the next couple of months, Minnesotans are going to be inundated with information, whether it be through the mail, social media or news sources, all related to one day - Nov. 6.
Known as the midterm election, that day in the 11th month is when voters statewide will decide who will serve in a variety of capacities from city mayor all the way up to the next governor.
In the case of local city, school and township elections, the candidate filings that closed Aug. 14 determined which names would be on the ballot.
That same day it was voters in the primary election who decided the list on the general election ballot.
The people spoke, and according to Steve Simon, who serves as Minnesota’s Secretary of State, a whole lot of Minnesotans let their voice be heard Aug. 14.
“Tuesday was an amazing night in Minnesota,” said Simon, adding there were more than 900,000 voters who cast ballots in the primary election – the most since 1982.
Simon added it was the highest turnout as nearly 23 percent of the 3,256,384 eligible voters voted, which he said is the greatest percentage since 1994.
Simon said in many ways the primary serves as a dress rehearsal as his office and those around the state prepare for November, and the Aug. 14 election went off with out any major issues.
“I really feel this was a good election, and Minnesotans really crushed it,” he said.
Simon said 16 percent of those who cast ballots opted to vote early, which he added is the largest number of voters exercising that choice in the history of the state.
Remember, voters could only select candidates in one party or the other when they colored in the ovals on the ballot.
In the U.S. Senate, Jim Newberger, who received 201,150 votes, will be taking on Amy Klobuchar, who received 556,519 votes. In Redwood County, Newberger received 565 votes, with Klobuchar receiving 657 votes. In Renville County, Newberger received 570 votes, with Klobuchar receiving 756 votes.
Also in the U.S. Senate, Karin Housley received 186,063 votes (435 in Redwood County and 478 in Renville County), with Tina Smith receiving 432,995 votes (506 in Redwood County and 602 in Renville County).
In the governor’s race, Jeff Johnson won the Republican primary with 168,535 votes (446 in Redwood County and 473 in Renville County) and Tim Walz was declared the DFL winner with 242,568 votes (396 in Redwood County and 395 in Renville County).
In the Seventh Congressional District, incumbent Collin Peterson ran unopposed. He will face David Hughes, who won the Republican primary with 30,783 votes.
With the primary election now in the rear-view mirror, Simon said his office is focused on Nov. 6.
Early voting, he said, begins Sept. 21, and in the weeks that follow voters can cast their ballots long before the actual election.
Simon added people who want their ballot mailed to them can make that request by visiting mnvotes.com.
“This is the way my dad votes now,” said Simon, adding that option is perfect for him.
Those who decide to request a mailed ballot need to remember it has to be returned by election day. No, it can’t be postmarked by that date in November, as is the case with one’s taxes, it has to be returned on or before that date to be counted.
“I am anticipating a good turnout in November,” said Simon, adding, however, just because the outcome of the primary election was so positive does not necessarily correlate to having a high number come the general election.
Simon said there seems to be a lot of energy and enthusiasm surrounding this election, and with many of the races looking to be tight, that should pique the interest of the voting public.
“There are a lot of competitive contests this year,” said Simon.
To learn more about the upcoming election, visit the Minnesota Secretary of State’s Web site at www.sos.state.mn.us.