Two Democrats are vying for the endorsement. They are Fricke and retiring Lewiston-Altura Superintendent Bruce Montplaisir. Fricke has said he will emphasize creating jobs and rural development. Montplaisir said his biggest concern is education and making sure that schools have stable, reliable funding.
The endorsing convention will be June 19 at Red Wing Public Library.
Murphy said he has tremendous respect for Montplaisir and his knowledge of school funding. But he said he is throwing his support behind Fricke because he believes Fricke has the time and energy needed to be a successful lawmaker.
"Joe is a recent graduate of law school and has a tremendous work ethic behind him," he said. "People want real leaders, and I believe we've got a leader in the making."
Whoever wins the DFL primary in August will face Republican-endorsed candidate John Howe, the mayor of Red Wing. Howe is already campaigning and announced that he has distributed 40,000 copies of a six-question survey to voters in the district. Topics include the state budget, taxes, job creation, education, transportation and the Prairie Island nuclear plant.
DFL delegates will also endorse a candidate for the House District 28A and 28B seats. The DFLers in each of these races do not face a primary challenger. Running for District 28A is Jerry Roth, a multi-machine operator at Cannon Equipment in Cannon Falls. He will take on GOP Rep. Tim Kelly of Red Wing. The District 28B DFL candidate is Plainview Area Chamber of Commerce director and farmer Mark A. Schneider. He is challenging incumbent GOP Rep. Steve Drazkowski of Mazeppa.