Gubernatorial candidates cross Minnesota making final pleas to voters

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ST. PAUL, MN (Gray DC) - The future of Minnesota in the balance as locals head to the polls Tuesday. Gubernatorial candidates made their final pleas throughout the Land of 10,000 Lakes Monday. There are some lesser known faces campaigning to become Minnesota’s next governor and some who have been in this exact position before.

Former Governor Tim Pawlenty (R-MN) stopped by an American Legion in Chanhassen, MN to begin his last day of campaigning ahead of Tuesday’s primary. Pawlenty wants his job back.

“My record is a good conservative record. And it’s a common sense record,” said Pawlenty.

Pawlenty served as governor from 2003 to 2011 before leaving his post. Current Governor Mark Dayton (D-MN) took over, but with Dayton now calling it quits, Pawlenty wants the state back in red hands.

What I’ve seen is a state that is headed off in a direction that wants to raise taxes, put government spending through the roof, look the other way on illegal immigrants.

Pawlenty is in a crowded field and doesn’t have the state party’s endorsement - that went to Hennepin County Commissioner Jeff Johnson. The other side of the race is also crowded at the top, with DFL Congressman Tim Walz in a heated race with State Attorney General Lori Swanson and State Rep Erin Murphy who has the party’s endorsement.

“Erin Murphy is engaging people throughout the state in one-on-one conversations,” said Ken Marty, chairman of the Minnesota DFL.

Martin roamed the state Monday in hopes of getting folks out to vote in Tuesday’s primary. He says Murphy is gaining a lot of momentum heading into the big day, but says no matter what happens after polls close, party unification is a must.

“This is a big family food fight and once that food fight’s over, guess what? We’re still a family,” said Martin.

This “food fight” comes to a head Tuesday morning when polls open at 7am central time.