Julianne Ortmann - legislative bio photo
by Steve Timmer
May 16, 2012, 10:00 PM

Being the Deputy

Since the election in 2010, there have been two Deputy Majority Leaders in the Minnesota Senate.

First, Geoff Michel, who was stripped of his epaulets and brass buttons over L’affaire Brodkorb, and who ultimately decided not to run again.

Now, the person designated to fill Michel’s big floppy shoes, Julianne Ortman, was denied the MNGOP endorsement in SD47. According to the Brick City blog, Ortman and challenger Bruce Schwichtenberg locked in a titanic, high-minded, and ultimately fruitless struggle over the endorsement:

The [Chaska] Herald reports indicate that the Ortman and Schwichtenberg campaigns were hitting each other hard with their literature.  Schwichtenberg accused Ortman of supporting expanded sales taxes and cap-and-trade as well as being a supporter of former Carver County GOP Chair Paul Zunker, who was convicted of criminal sexual conduct in March.  Ortman raised some issues in Schwichtenberg’s past, including a bankruptcy, tax issues, and a lengthy legal battle with Carver County over a septic system.

In a Hot Dis Politics post, it is reported that some of Ortman’s colleagues think she is “too moderate.” Perhaps unsurprisingly, that includes Sean Nienow.

After battling to the endorsement draw, Schwichtenberg did not initially commit to running in a primary. His supporters, upon getting wind of this, said, “Oh, no, Bruce, you’re running in a primary. Trust us; you’re running.”

Thanks for your feedback. If we like what you have to say, it may appear in a future post of reader reactions.