January 22, 2005


TARGETED IN MINNESOTA (Robert Novak, January 22, 2005, Townhall)

First term Sen. Mark Dayton of Minnesota, who depleted his fortune as Dayton-Hudson department store heir by spending $25 million in four statewide political campaigns, is being targeted by Republicans as the most vulnerable Senate Democrat in 2006.

Dayton spent $12 million of his own money to provide nearly all funding for his election in 2000, and his net worth is now officially disclosed as $5 million to $15 million. Facing the need to raise money for the first time, he recently fired his top fund-raisers after he finished the third quarter of 2004 with just $271,000 cash on hand.

In addition to money problems, Dayton slumped in the polls after he alone among U.S. senators closed his Washington offices because of an alleged terrorist threat.

In two years the GOP won't even need the nuclear option.

Posted by Orrin Judd at January 22, 2005 9:07 AM

Worse for Dayton is the fact that both Powerline and The Captain's Quarters are MN Blogs. You can count on these guys to serve a very useful role in helping the rest of the Nation unseat "Sir Robin" -- a Barbara Boxer wannabe in a purple state that is slowly trending Red.

Posted by: Moe from NC at January 22, 2005 12:28 PM

Althrough it may be jumping the gun a bit, there is a good blog named Dayton v. Kennedy, alluding to Rep Mark Kennedy's likely run against the esteemed senator.

Posted by: Gideon at January 22, 2005 12:49 PM

He spent $25 million and ran his fortune down to $5 million because he kept losing Senate races? You have to work at it to be that inept and his kids must really, really hate him.

Minnesota is a culturally conservative state and the great citadel of Minnesota liberalism, Minneapolis, is bankrupt. St Paul, the ugly stepsister which is steadily blooming, has Democrats who support GOP candidates as often as not.

Kennedy isn't in a big media market so he has an uphill fight, but he seems really talented.

Posted by: Bart at January 22, 2005 3:15 PM

I think Kennedy did get a good deal of publicity this year, though, with his thorough trouncing of a high-profile (but completely inept) opponent.

I remember when he was elected, back in 2000, by a handful of votes. He was the one bright spot for MN Republicans that year, and just barely. Now he's a political powerhouse.

Posted by: Timothy at January 23, 2005 9:21 PM