Though the DFL endorsing convention for the special election caused by Rep. Steve Gottwalt’s resignation isn’t until Jan. 26, the matchup is essentially set. That’s because Joanne Dorsher is the DFL’s only declared candidate for the Gottwalt special election.

After winning Saturday’s GOP endorsing convention, St. Cloud businesswoman Tama Theis will meet Ms. Dorsher in the Feb. 12 special election to represent HD-14A.

After a drama-filled convention, the GOP can now get into the serious business of getting Theis’s message out, then getting their voters out.

This was a drama-filled convention for several reason. First, Saturday’s GOP endorsing convention wasn’t settled until the seventh ballot. Second, this was a hotly contested endorsement, with Theis, former St. Cloud city councilman John Severson and Iraq War veteran Scott MacHardy each acquitting themselves well.

John Severson led the first and second ballots with 13 votes each time, with MacHardy getting 12 votes and Theis getting 11 votes the first ballot. On the second ballot, Theis got 12 votes and MacHardy 11.

Theis got the most votes on the third ballot with 14, followed by 12 votes each for Severson and MacHardy. Theis got the most votes in each of the following ballots until she won on the seventh ballot.

Ms. Theis will need to hit the ground runnning, starting Monday, because the DFL would love to steal this special election. They know that anything can happen in a special election.

Ms. Dorsher is a known commodity in St. Cloud, having been a member of the St. Cloud School Board and after runnning against Rep. Gottwalt in 2008. One that’s certain is that EdMinn’s foot soldiers will be out in force for Ms. Dorsher.

The biggest question is whether the business community does a better job of getting out their vote than EdMinn does in getting out the pro-government voters.

4 Responses to “Theis vs. Dorsher in HD-14A special election”

  • eric z says:

    What IS her message?

    I understand the intent was to describe the endorsement. Yet she went into the endorsement contest differing from the others on what policy grounds? Or was it a friendships and beauty contest? Was there much difference policy-wise?

    I understand downplaying that from the “let’s move on with solidarity for sake of the party” perspective, but were there any major policy differences?

    And is there anything there beyond a remodeling business co-owned by the spouses, and ” ‘I will stand up for unborn babies and protecting our family values,’ Theis said Saturday”?

    That’s from the SCTimes, which also reported, “Theis cast herself as a champion of the business community and of conservative social issues, citing her background as a small business owner and her opposition to abortion and same-sex marriage.”

    MPR reports online, “Theis owns a remodeling company. She touted her conservative values by saying she opposes abortion and same-sex marriage.”

    Does that about sum it up, or is there more gravitas?

    Last thing, Bluestem Prairie, “A press release was sent out for Theis–dateline “St. Peter,” so whomever is handling publicity is probably using a template and is connected to the Golgart campaign as well, since the Quists handle their own media.”

    Does that mean anything to you?

    Ditto question re SCTimes, “Theis is president of the Board of Directors for Birthline Inc.”

    Having never heard of Birthline Inc., who ‘dat?

    I checked the website,

    and it looks to me to be something different from Planned Parenthood, which I bet does better counseling in unexpected pregnancy cases.

    You guys, there in St. Cloud …

  • eric z says:

    Clarification of an ambiguity, the “better counseling” judgment reflects back to Planned Parenthood, not Birthline Inc.

  • eric z says:

    Ms. Theis does have a Likedin page, touching upon the two corporations, and you should have a look. It shows me a skill and inventiveness in marketing a range of remodeling services. If elected I expect despite what I would call an anti-family-choice animus, she appears to be a vastly more suited person than Gottwalt, with his conflict-of-interest offensiveness. I do not see anything she represents leading in that negative direction.

  • walter hanson says:

    I got an idea. When the President proposes his budget cut every department 5% and then tell the President since you’re spending what we tell you to spend you get to identify the spending cuts.

    Walter Hanson
    Minneapolis, MN

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