In an interview this afternoon, Hayfield Republican Rep. Randy Demmer said concerns about the growth of government prompted him to jump in the 1st Congressional District race.
“The worst fears we could imagine about government intervention, about government growth not just in terms of spending and taxation but just even the intervention in our lives is too much for me to take,” he said.
Demmer is expected to make his bid official tomorrow morning at an 8:30 a.m. press conference at the Olmsted County Government Center in Rochester. He said he does not plan to run for re-election to the legislature and instead will focus all of his energy on the congressional race.
This marks the second time Demmer has sought the seat currently held by Democratic Rep. Tim Walz. He launched a campaign bid in 2007 but lost the GOP endorsement to Rochester Dr. Brian Davis. Davis ended up losing to Walz, with the Democrat garnering nearly 63 percent of the vote.
Demmer joins former state Rep. Allen Quist of St. Peter, who has already announced he is seeking the Republican endorsement in the race. The local Republican said he intends to abide by the GOP endorsement, although he would not shut the door completely to running without it.
“My plan right now would be to seek that endorsement, and I guess at this point in time I would plan to abide by it. I think it would be extremely difficult to not (abide by it), but one thing I’ve learned is never say never,” he said.
He cites the Democrats' health care reform plan as a prime example of government going too far. He said he believes it is a first step toward a single-payer health care system. He added it is also time to curb federal spending adding that "under the term 'stimulus,' anything and everything goes."
Demmer said he also opposes the cap-and-trade bill aimed at curbing greenhouse gas emissions saying it would harm the state's agricultural industry.