MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO/AP) — A federal appeals panel indicated Friday that the Republican challenger in a Minnesota congressional race is unlikely to succeed in his appeal to move voting in that race to February after the death of a third-party candidate.
A three-judge panel of the 8th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals denied Tyler Kistner’s request to put a lower court decision on hold that moved the 2nd District election back to Nov. 3, but the panel granted a request to expedite his appeal.
A message left with Kistner’s campaign was not immediately returned.
The date of the election in the seat currently held by Democratic U.S. Rep. Angie Craig became an issue after the Sept. 21 death of Legal Marijuana Now Party candidate Adam Weeks triggered a state law that postponed the contest to February.
Craig, who is seeking reelection in the competitive suburban and rural district south of the Twin Cities, went to federal court to move the contest back to November, arguing that federal law requires the election to be held Nov. 3.
A federal judge agreed with Craig and Kistner appealed, saying numerous voters told his campaign they didn’t vote in the 2nd District because after Weeks’ death they were told their vote wouldn’t be counted in November.
Attorneys for Kistner, a Marine Corps veteran making his first run for office, have said the lower court’s order is “sure to disenfranchise thousands of voters” who believed there would be no election Nov. 3.
Those who skipped a vote in the 2nd District when they voted early or absentee had until Tuesday to go to their county elections office to have their ballot spoiled and receive a new one.
Republican Party of Minnesota Chairwoman Jennifer Carnahan released the following statement:
“The Republican Party of Minnesota stands behind Tyler Kistner as he appeals to the United States Supreme Court. After the death of third party candidate Adam Weeks, Democrat Secretary of State Steve Simon said that the law would be followed and the election would be delayed until February.
This is a rare case of triparistan agreement, as the Republican Party, the Legal Marijuana Now Party, and the Democrat Secretary of State all were on the same side against Angie Craig’s attempt to overturn state law to hold on to power and save her own political career.
Democrat Angie Craig has disrespected the life and efforts of Adam Weeks and the people who supported him and the voters will remember that. Ultimately the US Supreme Court will decide and in the meantime we encourage voters to participate in the election on November 3.”
(© Copyright 2020 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)
Source: CBS Minnesota