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Hotel owner Graves announces run for Congress

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Jim Graves news conference
Surrounded by his family and supporters, Democrat Jim Graves announces he will campaign against Republican Rep. Michele Bachmann for Minnesota's 6th Congressional District seat Tuesday, April 10, 2012 at Le St-Germain Suite Hotel in St. Cloud, Minn.
MPR Photo/Jennifer Simonson

A hotel company chief executive is running for Congress as a Democrat in Minnesota's 6th District, in hopes of facing incumbent Republican Michele Bachmann in the November election.

Jim Graves entered the race Tuesday in St. Cloud, making him the third Democrat to contend for the seat. Graves is chief executive of Graves World Hospitality, a company with holdings that include the Graves 601 Hotel in downtown Minneapolis. 

Graves told supporters that 6th District residents need more jobs and higher wages. 

"It's really about family values. What is family values? Giving people dignity. Giving people an opportunity to reach their goals and to be able to support their families with dignity and what have you. And that's why I'm here," he said.   

Grave's announcement comes just a few days before the district's DFL endorsing convention, which takes place Saturday. Two other DFLers are also in the race -- businessman Brian McGoldrick and attorney Anne Nolan.

McGoldrick urged Graves to abide by the party's endorsement process, but Graves said he has not yet decided whether to do so.  

"This is a very serious job and I think the 6th District deserves someone full time that can roll up their sleeves," said Graves. "I will stand toe to toe, face to face, bring out the facts and debate with Michele Bachmann what's best for the 6th District."

Graves lives in Minneapolis, but grew up in the St. Cloud area and says he'll establish residency there.