Johnson, Westrom to attend GOP dinner, a news brief in the Bemidji Pioneer, includes a guest list that caught our eye:
Other confirmed candidates include Michelle Macdonald, running for the Minnesota Supreme Court; Dave Hancock, running for the Minnesota House of Representatives; and Randy Gilbert, running for Minnesota Auditor.
Invitations have been sent to Stewart Mills, candidate for Minnesota's Eighth U.S. Congressional District, and Mike McFadden, candidate for U.S. Senate.
Tuesday evening, the Star Tribune editorial board noted in Keep political parties out of judicial elections:
The entertainment value of the Michelle MacDonald candidacy has been high of late for Minnesotans other than the Republican state convention delegates who endorsed her for the state Supreme Court three months ago.
That was before the GOP faithful knew that MacDonald, a Twin Cities family law attorney, had been arrested last year in Dakota County for suspicion of drunken driving and resisting arrest. Her case is scheduled to go to trial next month. . . .
The Bemidji Republican Banquet will take place on September 18, the Pioneer reports. According to an earlier article in the Star Tribune by Abby Simons, MacDonald's trial begins on September 15.
Perhaps by the night of the banquet, that legal proceeding will have settled some of internal tension among Republican candidates that the Strib editorial considered:
The sideshow has included watching GOP luminaries squirm as they attempt to distance themselves from MacDonald without casting aspersions on the party endorsement process that boosted her candidacy. State Sen. Scott Newman, the party’s candidate for attorney general, didn’t mince words. He announced his support for Lillehaug last week — an ironic choice, since Lillehaug was once an unsuccessful DFL candidate for attorney general.
Better yet, perhaps the Republican Party might take the paper's larger advice, and get out of the business of endorsing judges entirely.
Photo: Michelle McDonald accepting the MNGOP endorsement at the party's convention in Rochester.