DFL endorses Obermueller to take on GOP Rep. Kline
ROSEMOUNT — Delegates at the DFL 2nd Congressional District Convention in Rosemount on Saturday endorsed former state Rep. Mike Obermueller to take on GOP incumbent Rep. John Kline in November for a seat in the U.S. House of Representatives.
Obermueller gained the endorsement over Northfield City Councilman Patrick Ganey and Dakota County Commissioner Kathleen Gaylord.
"We need a candidate who can explain to the voters just what John Kline is like," Obermueller said. Obermueller, along with Ganey and Gaylor, all said that Kline’s voting record in Congress is out of touch with the beliefs and needs of 2nd District voters. "It’s not about what you put on fliers, it’s about what you vote in Washington that matters."
The endorsement didn’t come without some struggles on the convention floor. After the first ballot, Obermueller led the other two candidates by 64 votes to 37 votes apiece. But before a second vote could be taken, Gaylord announced she would suspend her campaign and asked the delegates to back Ganey.
"I’m trying to get the best candidate," she said after the announcement. "I want the candidate who is most sincere."
But the second and third ballots for the endorsement both built momentum for Obermueller, whose totals rose to 77 then 84 votes — just a few votes short of the 60 percent threshold needed to win the endorsement by ballot.
The results of the fourth ballot, though taken, were never shared with the convention as a whole because Ganey conceded.
"I am going to put all of my support behind Mike in this race because we have to win," Ganey said.
Wes Moreland, one of nine Goodhue County delegates, said the convention presented three strong candidates, any one of whom would make a good challenger to Kline.
"We have three good candidates," Moreland said between the second and third ballots. "I’d support any one of them."