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DFL Party endorses Dutcher

Associated Press

EDEN PRAIRIE, Minn. -- Former state auditor Judi Dutcher was endorsed by the Minnesota DFL Party Saturday for lieutenant governor, filling out the ticket headed by the party's endorsee for governor, Attorney General Mike Hatch.

"Judi Dutcher has been a tireless champion for Minnesota values," party Chair Brian Melendez said following the endorsement at the DFL State Central Committee meeting in Eden Prairie.

"She's proven herself able and willing to work across party lines to better represent all Minnesotans. And she has been unflagging in pursuit of core ideals like quality education and middle-class tax justice," Melendez said in a written statement.

"Judi and Mike have proven track records among Minnesota voters," he added. "In 1998, Judi received the most votes of any candidate in Minnesota history for statewide office, while Mike set the new record four years later."

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Despite their records of success, Hatch and Dutcher face a tough fight to unseat popular Republican Gov. Tim Pawlenty and his running mate, Lt. Gov. Carol Molnau.

Hatch and Dutcher also face a Democratic primary challenge from state Sen. Becky Lourey and her running mate, former Minnesota Viking Tim Baylor.

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