Another Republican has jumped into the open seat in Minnesota House District 19A, and the newly announced candidate is an old friend of Bluestem's editor from high school. Although our politics are very different--Joel is very much more conservative--we're friends on Facebook.
Here's his press release, mildly edited:
Joel Brinker, a St Peter resident and business man, is announcing a run as the GOP candidate for Minnesota House District 19A.
Brinker served eight years on the St Peter City Council from 1998 to 2006. In the beginning of his first term a tornado struck the city, causing widespread damage to residents, businesses, and government buildings. He was very instrumental in the rebuilding process.
He also served on various city boards before that time along with a term on the St. Peter Food Co-op board. This was a time when the Co-op made its first move to a larger building.
Fifty-six years old and father of two children, Joel has lived most of his life in St. Peter. He worked with his family business The Saint Peter Woolen Mill and Mary Lue’s Yarns before venturing out to other business on his own. He still works with these companies when needed.
He also drives truck for Max Johnson Trucking of Le Center. Road construction is their primary function.
His interest in politics started in 1992 with the Perot Campaign. From there, seeing that the only way to make a difference was to get involved, he started looking for opportunities to serve. Constituents have a high priority for Brinker sometimes over party.
Brinker also believes that the best ideas come from talking things out. Communications should always be first and foremost in decision-making, especially when the lives and livelihoods of others are involved.
Brinker also ran in the 2006 House election.
Update:Brinker sought the Republican endorsement in 2006, but dropped out after the first ballot at the Republican convention, the Mankato Free Press reported at the time. Andy Davis was endorsed then, but went on to lose to Terry Morrow.
Brinker also ran again for St. Peter City Council in 2011, finishing fourth in a five-person field. The top three went on to serve. [end update]
The Republicans will meet on Thursday to endorse a candidate. Josh Moniz at the New Ulm Journal has the deets--and it looks like local Republican leadership wasn't anticipating Brinker jumping in:
The Nicollet County Republican Party has scheduled an endorsement convention for Republican candidates in the 19A special election race for next Thursday, Jan. 10, at 7 p.m.
The convention will follow traditional endorsement convention procedures and is open the public. There are 160 delegates and alternates in the Republican's 19A district, which will consist of approximately 120 primary delegates.
So far, the only two announced Republican candidates, Allen Quist and Jim Golgart, have said they would abide by the convention's decision. Republican leaders in the first district have indicated they expect the two candidates to be the only ones seeking endorsement.
Governor Dayton has yet to set the date for the special election in MN HD 19A prompted by the resignation of Rep. Terry Morrow, who ran unopposed in the 2012 election. Morrow has taken a job with the Uniform Law Commission in Chicago.
Robin Courrier, Clark Johnson and Karl Johnson are competing for the DFL endorsement, Tim Gieseke plans an Independence Party bid and Jim Golgart and Allen Quist will battle Brinker for the Republican nod. The winner will represent Nicollet County, Kasota, and parts of Mankato.
Photo: Joel Brinker (center) and his children, via Facebook.
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